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Russell Brand’s media empire has taken a hit after YouTube removed monetisation on his lucrative £1million-a-year channel – but the star still has plenty of options to make money, MailOnline can reveal.
YouTube has stopped Brand from earning cash from his account after reportedly ‘violating’ the Google-owned video-sharing firm’s creator responsibility policy. The 48-year-old comic had produced around five videos a week for his 6.6million subscribers, earning him an estimated £1million a year.
Under the terms of his suspension he will still be allowed to post videos on the platform, but will not receive any of the advertising revenue – in what is expected to come as a significant blow to Brand’s bank balance.
While Brand would be ‘reeling’ from the financial hit, the comedian has been described as ‘financially uncancellable’ by PR and reputation guru Andy Barr.
For now that Brand has paused producing content on his Rumble podcast account – which has more than a 1.4million followers – his most popular videos have a potential of earning up to £80,000 each over the course of its lifetime, it is understood.
YouTube has demonetised his account, but Brand could still in theory make a deal with a third party company willing to sponsor his videos, meaning he could still be paid directly by advertisers.
And on his own website, he advertises a $60 (£50) a year subscription service to his self-produced podcast called ‘Stay Free with Russell Brand’, where fans can become one of his ‘awakened wonders’ by signing up to the platform.
For now that Brand has paused producing content on his Rumble podcast account – which has more than a 1.4million followers – his most popular videos have a potential of earning up to £80,000 each over the course of its lifetime, it is understood
Russell Brand has around 6million subscribers on YouTube, which earn him an estimated £1million a year
The clips regularly touch on conspiracy theories, including the idea that the pandemic, the Ukraine war and climate change distract from the activities of the global elite
Meanwhile, the comic has an army of millions of followers on social media – which opens the doors for companies or individuals to pay for sponsored content, which can be a lucrative cash spinner.
Top-earning celebrities like Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Justin Bieber and Beyonce Knowles – who all have hundreds of millions of fans each – can earn upwards of £1million a post.
Mr Barr said: ‘His earning power will be significantly dented in that the sponsorship deals and fees he could have commanded this time just one week ago will now be dramatically reduced.
‘What is interesting is that his follower numbers have gone up across several platforms despite the serious allegations and this will give him and his commercial team hope that he can still generate income, despite the crisis that he currently finds himself in.
‘The likes of Elon Musk appear to have come out in support of Brand and obviously there are revenue earning opportunities on Twitter/ X.com that Brand could also explore.
‘Will his audiences stay and remain engage though, especially with the story evolving seemingly every day. You can have the largest audience in the world, but if your engagement rate falls, this is when the majority of brands start to turn away and stop offering big money deals.’
The news comes after an explosive exposé reported allegations of abusive and predatory behaviour including rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse said to have been committed by former Hollywood star between 2006 and 2013.
Brand ‘absolutely denies’ the allegations and insists all his relationships have been ‘consensual’.
Russell Brand pictured on Saturday evening leaving the Troubabour Wembley Park theatre in north-west London after performing his Bipolarisation comedy set. Future dates for the show have since been suspended
This site shows how people can pay $60 to become part of Brand’s ‘Awakened Wonders Community’ and receive exclusive content
Russell Brand still has the potential to earn money on other platforms, a PR expert has said (Brand is pictured in 2014)
Following the claims, made in a joint investigation by The Times, Sunday Times and Channel 4 Dispatches, Brand’s remaining shows for his Bipolarisation tour were postponed as the Metropolitan Police said they had received a report of an alleged sexual assault in the wake of media allegations about the comedian and actor.
Despite the allegations and the move to halt his earnings on YouTube, Brand still sits on an estimated fortune of about £16million.
Since his meteoric rise to fame, he has starred in feature films such as Death on the Nile, Minions: The Rise of Gru, Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Get Him To The Greek.
The 48-year-old lives in a £3.3million seven-bedroom Oxfordshire mansion with his wife Laura and their two children.
The stunning thatched cottage is based in the affluent riverside town of Henley-on-Thames, which is a popular haunt with the rich and famous,
Near to his country pile, Brand owns the Crown Inn pub in Pishill. He and his wife bought the Grade II listed building for about £850,000 in December 2021. It’s thought to now be worth about £1million.
However, Brand’s village boozer – which has been closed since he bought it – went ‘into lockdown’ as it was sealed by security fencing in the wake of his rape and sexual assault allegations.
Brand owns the Crown Inn at Pishill, Oxfordshire, with wife Laura Gallacher
Locals claim the hessian-coated barriers were put up around the grade-II listed pub this morning, with three security guards outside and as many as six men inside
Planning permission is needed if you wish to erect a new fence if it is next to a highway used by vehicles and exceeds one metre in height or if part of the site is within the curtilage of a listed building
Locals claimed a series of hessian-coated barriers were put up around the pub on Sunday, with three security guards outside and as many as six men inside.
Brand has invested in a number of properties during his time in Hollywood, buying a $6.5million (£5.2million) Los Angeles mansion with his ex-wife Katy Perry in 2011. After the couple split, the 8,835-sq ft home was sold for more than $5.5million (£4.4million). The pair also bought a penthouse in $2.75million New York which was also later sold.
In 2020, Brand snapped up a palatial pad in the Hollywood Hills for a reported $3million (£2.4million). The sprawling 2,700sq ft Hacienda-style home was built in the 1950s and sits behind huge gates that lead to an open-air garage. The luxury pad even comes with its own music studio.
The maverick comedian also runs his own companies which helps to keep his bank balance healthy. Pablo Diablo’s Legitimate Business Firm Ltd, which he co-owns with his wife, for instance, saw its cash reserves balloon by £2million last year to £4.1million. He also runs film production firm 90 Ninety Films Limited.
Online, Brand has built up a loyal and lucrative fanbase on social media – he has 3.8million followers on Instagram, 6.6million subscribers on YouTube, 11.2million followers on Twitter and 5.9million on Facebook.
His YouTube account – which has since been suspended for ‘violating’ its responsibility policy – is also thought to have been a solid earner for the under-fire comic.
The channel, which features a number of vaccine-sceptic videos and conspiracy theory videos, has more than 1.1billion views. Individual videos tend to get between 500,000 and one million views.
Estimates on how much cash he rakes in from it vary. However, social media expert Sara McCorquodale claimed the comedian and self-styled wellness guru could easily be pocketing thousands of pound with each video – which is now in jeopardy following is suspension.
It comes after accusations published in The Sunday Times and on Channel 4 ‘s Dispatches saw multiple women accusing him of abusive and predatory behaviour, including rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse, between 2006 and 2013
Ms McCorquodale, who is the chief executive of social media analysis agency CORQ, told The Guardian: ‘He is most likely making £2,000 to £4,000 per video, not taking into account any affiliate deals and brand sponsorships that might be running in the background.’
Based on five videos a week, Brand could easily be earning the best part of £1million a year from his channel. But some estimates have claimed he could earn as much as £2.92million.
The actor has previously been demonitized by YouTube. It led to him joining alternative video-sharing platform Rumble, where he rose to become one of the site’s most popular podcasters.
His daily show – which has paused since allegations of rape and sexual abuse were levelled at Brand over the weekend – has a following of more than 1.4million people.
Videos on the platform earn cash in similar way as YouTube, with content makers getting a share of the profits made through advertising or by giving up rights to their clips to potentially earn up to $1,000 a video from the firm.
It’s not known how much Brand makes from his Rumble account, but sources say top earner can rake in anything from $3 to $20 per 1,000 views. It means his most-watched video, with more than five million views, could potentially have netted him anything from $15,000 to $100,000 (£12,000 to £80,000).
The Rumble channel description reads: ‘Everybody knows that the old ideas won’t help us. Religion is dead. Capitalism is dead. Communism is dead. Where will the answers of the next century lie? Particularly, when we’re facing a mental health epidemic and ecological meltdown.’
Russell Brand’s subscription and video views on YouTube have exploded since 2017
Brand has since been dropped by his PR team and book publishers following the allegations
Critics claim Brand has ‘set up a cult’ online to back him since the birth of the Me Too movement in 2017 by giving a platform to conspiracy theories including the idea that the pandemic, the Ukraine war and climate change distract from the activities of the global elite.
Sponsorship is also an area Brand is prominent in, with many of his videos featuring a product mention and link to it at the top of the video’s written description, from which earnings for prominent YouTubers can be significant.
As part of his media empire, Brand also advertises his own self-produced podcast called ‘Stay Free with Russell Brand’. Fans of the comedian can become one of his ‘awakened wonders’ by signing up for $60 (£48) to receive exclusive content, guided meditations and even go on virtual walks with Brand.
Luminary, the subscription podcast firm, also produces Brand’s interview show Under the Skin with Russell Brand. The company has not yet commented on whether it still has a business relationship with the 48-year-old.
His Instagram account includes a link to a merchandise store – although the webpage says the store is currently under review – and his website is currently selling tickets to a wellness festival scheduled for next summer and hosted by Brand and his wife, with several tiers of weekend tickets costing between £160 and £195 each having already sold out.
The link to the merchandise store on Instagram and a message on Brand’s website note that profits from both the store and festival will go to the Stay Free Foundation – an organisation Brand chairs which works with charities helping people with addiction and mental health issues.
In addition, Brand uses his social media presence to promote his other work, including tickets to his now-postponed live stand-up comedy tour and the range of podcasts he hosts.
Back in 2008, Brand signed a £1.8million deal with publishers Harper Collins for two books following the success of his Sunday Times best-seller, My Booky Wook.
He followed this up with Revolution in 2015 and a children’s book The Pied Piper of Hamelin the year before. In 2018, Brand published Recovery: Freedom from our Addictions with Pan Macmillan.
Back in 2008, Brand signed a £1.8million deal with publishers Harper Collins for two books following the success of his Sunday Times best-seller, My Booky Wook
Brand’s litany of book deals have seen him write autobiographies, political manifestos and wellness (pictured: 2017 book Recovery)
A new version was set for release in 2024, according to Variety. But this has now been paused after Pan Macmillian imprint Bluebird decided to cut ties and ‘pause all future publishing’ following the allegations against the comic.
In a statement, Bluebird said: ‘These are very serious allegations and in the light of them, Bluebird has taken the decision to pause all future publishing with Russell Brand.’
Literary agency Tavistock Wood dropped Brand as a client over the weekend and the Trevi Women & Children’s Charity, a domestic abuse organization, announced Sunday it had ended its association with Brand and his charity, the addiction-related Stay Free Foundation.
The damning allegations also led to Channel 4 removing all programmes linked to him on its website, including episodes of The Great British Bake Off and Big Brother’s Big Mouth in which he was featured.
Streaming giant Netflix has since been urged to remove his comedy special, Re:Birth, from its catalogue.
Meanwhile, promoters of Brand’s latest standup show, Bipolarisation, have pulled his next appearances as the investigation into what the actor said were ‘serious criminal’ allegations continues.
He was due to perform his Bipolarisation show at the Theatre Royal Windsor on Tuesday, Plymouth Pavilions on Friday and the Halls Wolverhampton next Thursday.
A statement from the promoters issued on Monday afternoon said: ‘We are postponing these few remaining addiction charity fundraiser shows, we don’t like doing it – but we know you’ll understand.’
The venues had been locked in talks most of the day over what to do about the Brand show after he was accused of rape and sexual assault.
Russell Brand, pictured at the Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre last night, could keep a large amount of his fanbase despite the allegations against him, a PR expert has said
Channel 4 has since removed shows from its site linked with Brand. Pictured: Brand on Celebrity Great British Bake Off
Brand hosting Big Brother’s Little Brother in May 2006 – which is another one of the show’s Channel 4 has removed from its website containing the comedian
Staff at Big Brother producer Endemol admitted last night that many feared Brand’s ‘predatory’ behaviour
In the wake of the scandal, it today emerged Brand had stood down as the director of two companies, performing arts firm One Arm Bandit Limited, and Mayfair Film Partnership Limited.
PR experts have now questioned whether the sex scandal facing the star could lead to his fans turning their backs on him.
PR guru Sean O’Meara says the allegations against Brand were hugely damaging – although potentially not career ending.
Mr O’Meara, managing director of communications and PR consultancy Essential Content, told MailOnline: ‘From a reputational point of view, mainstream platforms would be crazy to consider working with Brand again.
‘But that doesn’t mean he can’t have a career after this.
‘He now has no choice but to fully embrace his persona as a conspiracist crusader against the ‘establishment’, using social media and his own platforms, if he wants to continue being a public figure and performer.
‘That’s his only path to recovery. People will still pay to see him, but I doubt he’ll be getting the support of powerful booking agents and promoters.’
Despite the ‘horrendous’ allegations facing Brand, some claim Brand’s ‘cult following’ online may be willing to back him
PR expert Mark Borkowski says some of Brand’s fanbase will stay intact thanks to the ‘unfettered unregulated world of social media’.
But he also questioned whether Brand would have enough of a following to maintain his millionaire lifestyle – as he claimed he was uncertain about how much cash the comedian was raking in now.
‘I’ve no idea how he makes his money. I’m still bewildered about how he generates cash. It’s always been bewildering for me,’ he added.
Brand received support online from the likes of Andrew Tate and Elon Musk and his fans were out in force at a gig in Wembley on Saturday to show their support.
Russell Brand pictured with his wife Laura Gallacher recently before the allegations against him emerged
Mr Borkowski said that Brand has 11million followers on Twitter alone, 6.6million subscribers on YouTube and a hugely popular wellness podcast. These fans could choose to back him.
‘He [Brand] has an audience and lots and lots of people who are engaged in his content’.
He added the comedian’s denial of the accusations was reminiscent of how Donald Trump deals with accusations of improper behaviour.
Mr Borkowski said: ‘I think there will be a profound amount of people who will stand by him. Normally with allegations like this your career would be over, but not in this case, which is interesting.
‘He’s a great content generator. He didn’t get to the top of his profession because he’s mediocre. He has the power to bewitch his audience.’
Brand, 48, was accused of attacking four women between 2006 and 2013 when he was working as a presenter for BBC Radio 2 and Channel 4 and later as an actor in Hollywood. Other women have made a range of accusations about controlling, abusive and predatory behaviour.
Brand has since been dropped by a women’s charity he was working with, while TV production companies and channels have launched probes into his alleged behaviour.
In recent years Brand has found work as a stand-up comedian, podcaster and actor. Pictured: The 48-year-old in the 2022 film Death on the Nile
Alice (pictured) alleges that Russell Brand sexually assaulted her when she was 16 years old. She claims he would send a car to pick her up from her secondary school lessons, which she has since claimed was a ‘BBC car’
Bosses at Netflix have been urged to remove his comedy special, Re:Birth from its streaming catalogue
BBC chiefs scrambled to investigate Brand last night after the comedian was accused of rape.
Their probe was announced minutes before Scotland Yard piled on the pressure by announcing that detectives would like to speak to the comedian’s alleged victims.
Brand, a former star of the BBC and Channel 4, faces bombshell claims from women alleging sexual assaults, abuse and predatory behaviour – including one who was a 16-year-old schoolgirl.
But the claims from one businesswoman – who alleged Brand raped her when she refused a threesome – and another who said she was 16 when he choked her during a sexual act, prompted a firestorm yesterday.
Among the complaints raised in the investigation were allegations by a woman, referred to as Alice to protect her identity, who claims she was sexually assaulted by Brand as a 16-year-old.
She alleges he took her virginity, was ‘preoccupied’ with her being ‘innocent and pure’, and often referred to her as ‘The Child’.
Alice described his behaviour towards her as ‘grooming’ as Brand would allegedly provide her with scripts on how to deceive her parents into allowing her to visit him. She also claimed he would send his ‘BBC car’ to her secondary school to pick her up.
The comedian released a video last week refuting all the allegations against him. Pictured: Brand leaving the Troubabour Wembley Park theatre after a gig on Saturday night
Latest Russell Brand News
‘The first time I used it, he told me it was booked to take him to his radio show but he had a friend taking him instead so I should use that car,’ she told The Times.
She claimed the chauffeur once took her from Brand’s home to her grandmother’s house and that on a separate occasion the same car ‘picked me up from school’.
Alice added: ‘It was the same car…I knew that that was a BBC car.’
The BBC did not initially commit to an inquiry but amid the growing outcry, it shifted its position last night and a spokesman said it was ‘urgently looking into the issues’.
In a statement, a BBC spokesman said: ‘The documentary and associated reports contained serious allegations, spanning a number of years.
‘Russell Brand worked on BBC radio programmes between 2006 and 2008 and we are urgently looking into the issues raised.’
The broadcaster yesterday launched an internal investigation into what was known about Brand’s alleged behaviour following claims that at least one senior executive was aware of complaints against the comedian and seemingly dismissed them.
Banijay UK, which produced Big Brother’s EForum and Big Brother’s Big Mouth in the early 2000s, revealed it had also ‘launched an urgent investigation’ into the ‘very serious’ allegations from former staff who worked alongside Brand when he hosted the programmes between 2004 and 2006.
The ex-staffers have claimed that Brand got them to ‘act like pimps’ by getting the numbers of women in the audience and passing notes to them from the presenter.
Channel 4 has also said it is conducting its own internal investigation following allegations of predatory behaviour against Brand.
They said: ‘We have asked the production company who produced the programmes for Channel 4 to investigate these allegations and report their findings properly and satisfactorily to us.
‘Channel 4 is also conducting its own internal investigation, and we would encourage anyone who is aware of such behaviour to contact us directly.’
The statement added: ‘We will be writing to all our current suppliers reminding them of their responsibilities under our Code of Conduct, as we are committed to ensuring our industry has safe, inclusive and professional working environments.’
The network also confirmed to the Telegraph that it has ‘taken down all content featuring Russell Brand while we look into the matter’.
Among the most devoted fans are listeners to his podcast, on which he rails against ‘Big Pharma’ and the mainstream media, as well as promoting conspiracy theories.
The allegations of ‘sinister’ behaviour towards women made against him have the potential to end careers in showbusiness.
These include claims he made runners on Big Brother’s EFourum, which was later known as Big Brother’s Big Mouth, ‘act like pimps’ by demanding they get the numbers of women in the audience for him.
One staff member claimed she felt she was ‘groomed’ for sex by the presenter, while another said they had reported concerns about his behaviour to managers at production company Endemol. Banijay UK, which bought the firm in 2020, has launched an investigation into the claims.
In the investigations, one woman alleged Brand raped her against the wall in his Los Angeles home when she was in her 30s. Another – whom he allegedly referred to as ‘the child’ – told how the presenter targeted her when was 16 years old and still at school, and he was aged 30.
Russell Brand’s comments in full:
Hello there you awakening wonders. Now this is not the usual type of video we make on this channel where we critique, attack and undermine the news in all its corruption because in this story I am the news.
I have received two extremely disturbing letters – or a letter and an email – one from a mainstream media TV company, one from a newspaper listing a litany of extremely egregious and aggressive attacks, as well as some pretty stupid stuff, like my community festival should be stopped and I shouldn’t be able to attack mainstream media narratives on this channel.
But amidst this litany of astonishing rather baroque attacks are some very serious allegations that I absolutely refute. These allegations pertain to a time when I was in the mainstream, when I was in the newspapers all the time, when I was in the movies, and as I’ve written about extensively in my books I was very, very promiscuous.
During that time of promiscuity the relationships I had were absolutely always consensual. I was always transparent about that then, almost too transparent, and I am being transparent about it now as well.
And to see that transparency metastasized into something criminal that I absolutely deny makes me question is there another agenda at play.
Particularly when we have seen coordinated media attacks before, like Joe Rogan where he dared to take a medicine the mainstream media didn’t approve of and we saw a spate of headlines of media outlets around the world using the same language.
I am aware that you guys in the comments have been for a while saying ‘watch out Russell, they’re coming for you,’ ‘you are getting too close to the truth’, ‘Russell Brand did not kill himself’.’
I know a year ago there was a spate of articles: Russell Brand is a conspiracy theorists; Russell Brand is right wing.
I am aware of newspapers making phone calls, sending letters to people I know. For ages and ages, it’s been clear to me or at least feels to be there’s a serious and consorted agenda to control these kinds of spaces and these kind of voices.
I need my voice along with your voice. I don’t mind them using my books and my stand up to talk about my promiscuous sexual conduct in the past. What I seriously refute are these very, very serious, criminal allegations.
Also its worth mentioning that there are witnesses whose evidence directly contradicts the narratives that these two mainstream media outlets are trying to construct, apparently in what seems to be to me a coordinated attack.
Now, I don’t want to get into this any further because of the serious nature of the allegations but I feel like I’m being attacked and plainly they are working very closely together.
We are obviously going to look into this matter because it is very, very serious.
In the meantime, I want you to stay close, stay awake but more importantly than any of that, if you can stay free.