East Coast transplant renowned on Hampton’s social scene for hosting wild, all-night “flapper” soirees fueled by caviar, champagne and the Charleston. Cagey about source of fortune; reportedly associates with known organized crime figures, rumored to have interests in the “import-export” business. Close friends claim a hopeless romantic lurks underneath jaunty exterior. Impressive fashion sense: twice-named Long Island’s Best Dressed Bachelor. Featured in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.
The eldest daughter of the Earl of Grantham is rich in her own right after inheriting a fortune following the death of her husband (and fourth cousin) Matthew Reginald Crawley —who had in turn inherited a huge sum from his deceased fiancée’s father. Crawley’s life began to look even more like a soap opera after her father the Earl bet his family’s fortune on a Canadian railroad company, and lost; Lady Mary Josephine’s newfound net worth is reportedly all that’s keeping the family afloat. Featured in the television series Downton Abbey.
Eccentric real estate owner took big hit after Hurricane Sandy; tore down hotels on Boardwalk, Ventor Ave. and Marvin Gardens, temporarily replacing them with windowless green houses. Said to be rolling the dice again, eyeing Atlantic City railroads, utilities. Vehement opponent of Sherman Antitrust Act and the luxury tax blames shadowy opponents (particularly Mrs. Dog) for repeated visits to county lockup; rumored to carry a “Get Out of Jail Free” card. Credits diet, exercise for recent second place finish in a beauty contest. Featured in the Hasbro board game Monopoly.
The Countess of Abbingdon inherited a fortune from her staid British ancestors, but gentle birth didn’t make her mild mannered: After earning a degree in archaeology, Croft made a name for herself discovering the long lost kingdom of Yamatai on an island off the coast of Japan. Dubbed “Tomb Raider” by the British tabloids, Croft has reportedly sold the film rights to her life story, and discourages snooping paparazzi with a pair of hip-holstered pistols. Featured in the Tomb Raider video games and films.
High tech hotshot flipped a startup into a billion-dollar check from Microsoft, nearly lost everything after a break-up with his high-school sweetheart turned wife, and then disappeared from the Silicon Valley scene. Now reportedly living in a Malibu mansion with persnickety best friend and his teenage son; attempting comeback with new business selling power-grid management software. Featured in the television series Two and a Half Men.
The owner and operator of Springfield Nuclear Power Plant is known for his no-holds-barred approach to driving revenues; attempted schemes include dumping waste in a local river, replacing employees with robots, blocking out the sun to increase electricity use. Burns’ tyrannical management style topped only by viciously evil personal habits, including stealing candy from babies and releasing trained attack hounds on houseguests. Personal heroes include Sun Tzu, Vlad the Impaler, and Judas Iscariot. Featured in the television series The Simpsons.
The Hand of the King is the real power in Westeros, according to Flea Bottom wags: Grandson Joffrey may sit on the Iron Throne, but Tywin set him there and pulls his strings. The Lord of Casterly Rock hopes to “establish a dynasty that would last a thousand years” following Joffrey’s ascension; recent developments in the war against rebel factions prove that Tywin’s on his way to doing just that —and that a Lannister always pays his debts. Featured in the television series Game of Thrones and The Song of Ice and Fire novels.
Enfant terrible of the business world attributes outsized success to hard-work, lack of personal distractions and extensive use of binding employment contracts, “I like to tie down my best employees.” Demanding task-master is known for buying underperforming companies and whipping them into shape. Insists on perfection in surroundings –and lawsuits allege– in cadre of young, blonde personal assistants. Extreme reticence has fueled salacious rumors over personal habits; former confidantes whisper of a “double life.” Recently bankrolled new pain management program at Washington State University Vancouver. Featured in the novel 50 Shades of Grey.
World’s youngest philanthropist latest to join Bill Gates’ and Warren Buffett’s Giving Pledge, promising to give away majority of his wealth; immediately backed up promise with series of splashy gestures, donating thousands of diamond-encrusted dog bowls to the ASPCA, endowing a finishing school for robotic maids. Along with Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Tumblr’s David Karp and Instagram’s Kevin Systrom charter member of technology’s newest Brat Pack. G-rated hijinks include food fights at the Mountain View, Calif. Baskin Robbins, thumb-wrestling marathons, throwing $100 bills at passing venture capitalists. Prolific tweeter @poorlittlerichboy. Featured in the Richie Rich comic books and films.
Rumors of Wayne’s death during terrorist occupation of Gotham proven false after Italian tabloids run a photo of the billionaire playboy sipping Fernet Branca in a busy Florence cafe. “He must have been batty to think we wouldn’t have recognized him,” says proud paparazzo. Maybe Wayne just needed a vacation: He watched parents gunned down at age 8, returned to Gotham at age 25, and nearly drove the family business into the ground developing an ill-fated fusion reactor. Wayne Enterprises CEO Lucius Fox now has the company back on solid footing, but Bruce remains dogged by rumors of a rubber suit fetish, association with underground fight clubs, and questionable activities with teenage wards. Featured in the Batman comics and films.
Last of old school media barons still loves print: Owns more than 50 newspapers worldwide, ranging from local weeklies and freebie shoppers to major-metro tabloids and national broadsheets; also radio, television, movie studios. Financial analysts scratching heads over recent purchase of toy factory from Chinese owners; entire line of Flexible Flyer sleds will now be sold under “Rosebud” brand. Said to be increasingly reclusive; close associates blame stress of divorce from much younger second wife. Passionate collector of Greco-Roman sculpture, exotic animals, snow globes. Featured in the film Citizen Kane.
An engineering genius who earned two master’s degrees by age 19, Stark’s remarkable inventions (repulsor rays, “Iron Man” combat armor) are often outshined by his ability to create controversy. His latest foible: publicly threatening the terrorist known as The Mandarin, who responded by destroying Stark’s Malibu mansion. Still, the billionaire playboy’s net worth is actually up year over year, thanks in large part to the stewardship of Stark Industries CEO (and subject of a recent Forbes cover story) Pepper Potts.
Slow and steady wins the race: Small-town doctor/immortal blood-sucking monster has amassed 11-figure fortune the old-fashion way, by banking a small sum in 1670 and witnessing the miracle of 343-years of compounding interest. Early backer of IBM, Apple, East India Company: Investment acuity greatly enhanced by daughter Alice’s ability to see into the future. Avoids sunlight, public displays of wealth, feeding on humans. Woods surrounding Pacific Northwest estate oddly devoid of deer. Featured in the Twilight novels and films.
Reclusive red-gold dragon who spent eons holed up in remote lair thrust into limelight after agreeing to appear in Peter Jackson’s trilogy of Hobbit films; now spends his days in Hollywood’s exclusive Chateau Marmont. Hotel staff perplexed by habit of speaking in complicated riddles, constant demands for ashtrays, room-service orders of “pony-on-a-stick” and “virgin-stuffed spring rolls.” Excessively paranoid about theft; doesn’t just stuff his money under his mattress —he makes his mattress out of money. Fortune takes major hit as price of gold tumbles 20%. Featured in the novel and film The Hobbit.
The world’s richest duck is back on top after recovering his fortune from arch-rival Flintheart Glomgold. McDuck started out in business when he was “just a wee nipper,” polishing boots on the streets of his native Glasgow; today he owns some of the world’s largest mining concerns. Famously penny-pinching, the Quacking Croesus still has the first dime he ever earned, and keeps most of his net worth in gold coins piled high inside a Duckburg “money bin.” Featured in the Uncle Scrooge comic books and cartoons.