North Stars

Russell Peters is now third-highest-earning comedian in the world

Soraya Roberts
North Stars

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This is not a joke: Russell Peters just landed the No. 3 spot on Forbes's annual list of the highest-earning comedians in the world. The 42-year-old Brampton, Ontario, native couldn't beat out Jerry Seinfeld (who was crowned No. 1), but he did make more than comedy heavy hitters like Louis C.K., Daniel Tosh, and Kevin Hart, who were also in the top 10.

Not to be funny, but how did that happen?

According to Forbes, the list was compiled based on each comedian's primary source of income being from concert ticket sales. And thanks to Peters's YouTube videos and global following, he is one of the most successful touring funnymen in the world, earning $21 million from June 2012 to June 2013.

Back in 2010, the Canadian comic told Allan Gregg that he became so famous because of his "Comedy Now!" special from 2003. It was uploaded to YouTube and went viral, with YouTube users reportedly snipping it up according to the cultural groups he addressed in his jokes. "Instead of getting offended," he said, "everybody was like, 'This is great!'"

Still, Peters can't beat Seinfeld, the sitcom star who has kept himself busy touring since "Seinfeld" the show ended 15 years ago. The 59-year-old comic, who is still reaping the benefits from his show's syndication, made $32 million in the past year after doing more than 70 tour dates. According to Forbes, Seinfeld takes home the biggest cut of cash from his shows out of all the comedians on the list.

In the No. 2 spot sits Terry Fator, the ventriloquist who was crowned the 2007 winner of "America's Got Talent." Forbes reports that Fator has performed more shows (200) than any other comedian on the list after having signed a reportedly $100 million five-year contract with Las Vegas's Mirage Hotel.

Rounding out the Top 5 are ventriloquist Jeff Dunham with $19 million, followed by "Louie" star Louis C.K. with $16 million.

Forbes's Top 10 Highest-Earning Comedians

1. Jerry Seinfeld, $32 million
2. Terry Fator, $24 million
3. Russell Peters, $21 million
4. Jeff Dunham, $19 million
5. Louis C.K., $16 million
6. Kevin Hart, $14 million
7. Larry the Cable Guy, $13 million
8. George Lopez, $12 million
9. Daniel Tosh, $11 million/Daniel Iglesias, $11 million (tie)

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