Reginald VelJohnson Reportedly Earned $100,000 for ‘Die Hard’

Many fans agree that Die Hard ranks as one of the top action movies of all time. The 1988 film was a box-office success, earning over $130 million. It also launched the successful careers of actors Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, and Reginald VelJohnson. Although VelJohnson had a supporting role, his character is an important part of the story. So how much did VelJohnson earn for his role as Sgt. Al Powell?

Actor Reginald VelJohnson at the 2021 premiere of the Disney+ series 'Turner & Hooch'
Reginald VelJohnson I Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Reginald VelJohnson reportedly earned $100,000 for ‘Die Hard’

Before landing his role as Powell in Die Hard, VelJohson appeared in a few TV shows and films, including the 1986 film Crocodile Dundee. Yet, it would be Die Hard that would provide him with his big break. With the success of the action flick, VelJohnson landed other big roles and a comfortable nest egg.

According to Celebrity Net Worth, VelJohnson’s net worth is estimated to be $5 million. For his role in Die Hard, VelJohnson was paid $100,000. Although it’s significantly less than co-star Willis’ $5 million salary, it’s still a nice amount for an upcoming actor.

‘Die Hard’ helped Reginal VelJohnson land his ‘Family Matters’ role

Aside from earning a nice paycheck, Die Hard also provided recognition for VelJohnson. According to, before the movie was released, TV producer Thomas L. Miller went to an advanced screening of Die Hard. Miller was impressed with VelJohnson’s performance; he thought the actor would be perfect for his upcoming show Family Matters.

RELATED: How Many Times Has ‘Family Matters’ and ‘Die Hard’ Star Reginald VelJohnson Played a Cop?

A year after Die Hard‘s release, VelJohnson went to the other role that would gain him more fame. For nine seasons, VelJohnson played beloved dad Carl Winslow on Family Matters. VelJohnson’s character was a Chicago cop, a profession that’s become synonymous with most actor’s roles. In a 2015 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, VelJohnson joked about always playing a cop. “I don’t know what it is about me and this cop thing, but I get a lot of cop offers,” he told the magazine.

Life after ‘Die Hard’ and ‘Family Matters’

Die Hard, and Family Matters will always be VelJohnson’s most famous roles. Since then, he’s continued to work steadily on other film and television projects. In recent years, he’s landed small parts in films such as Like Mike, and You Again.

As for TV shows, he’s had guest appearances on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and Mike & Molly. Currently, he can be seen on the Disney+ series Turner & Hooch, where he’s playing a former police officer turned mayor. As VelJohnson once said, “as long as they are paying me, I will play a cop until the day I die.”