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SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian actress Naomi Watts, who starred in "The Ring," King Kong," and "Eastern Promises," is the actress who provides the best return for a film studio, according to a list by Forbes.com.
With cash-strapped studios looking for return on their investments, Forbes.com compiled a list of the 10 actresses who provide the best bang for their buck.
They found actresses who commanded the highest prices, like Angelina Jolie who topped Forbes' list of the best paid actresses after banking $27 million in a year, were outranked by those earning around $5 million and under for a film.
Watts, 41, topped the list after the analysis found she helped the box office make an estimated $44 for every $1 she was paid for her last three major films.
Jennifer Connelly, star of ""Blood Diamond" and "He's Just Not That Into You," came second with her films earning about $41 for each dollar she was paid and Rachel McAdams, of "The Notebook" and this year's "The Time Traveler's Wife," came third with $30 for every $1 earned.
Fourth was Natalie Portman of the new "Star Wars" movies and "The Other Boleyn Girl" with her films making $28 for every $1 she was paid followed by Meryl Streep who made the top five due to the massive box office success of last year's "Mamma Mia," earning $27 for every $1 paid.
Rounding out the 10 were Jennifer Aniston ($26 per $1) while films by Halle Berry, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, and Hilary Swank all made $23 for every dollar they earned.
Forbes.com said it compiled its list by looking at the 100 biggest stars in Hollywood. To qualify each actress had to have starred in at least three movies in the past five years that opened in more than 500 theatres.
They looked at the star's estimated earnings, each movie's estimated budget, and box office, DVD and television earnings to figure out an operating income for each movie.
Writing by Belinda Goldsmith, Editing by Paul Casciato