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Celebrities who are donating their staggering fortune to charity

Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis won't be setting up a trust fund for their children

Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis and Elton John split image© Getty Images
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
December 7, 2023
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A-list celebrity status is often paired with big paychecks, and there are many charitable stars out there who choose to give back by donating huge sums of money to charity. 

However, amongst those famous faces are celebrities and famous business moguls who are planning to give a massive chunk of their fortune to charity, rather than to their children. 

From Daniel Craig to Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis, here are ten celebrities who are planning on giving away most of their wealth. 

Simon Cowell with son Eric and partner Lauren Silverman on red carpet for America's Got Talen© Getty

Simon Cowell

Shortly after he welcomed baby Eric with his partner Lauren Silverman in 2014, Simon Cowell said that he wouldn't be passing down his fortune, estimated to be worth £496 million. Instead, the music mogul would prefer to give his money to charity. "I'm going to leave my money to somebody. A charity, probably – kids and dogs. I don't believe in passing on from one generation to another," he said.

Bill and Melinda Gates in the CBS Toyota Greenroom before their appearance on CBS THIS MORNING, Feb 12, 2019© Getty

Bill Gates

While Bill Gates boasts a hefty fortune, estimated at £88 billion, he's not planning on leaving all of it to his three children, Jennifer, Rory and Phoebe.

Instead, the Microsoft founder and his wife Melinda, who set up The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2000, will give away their fortune to charitable causes. Bill said he will donate "virtually all of my wealth" to the foundation. 

Since 1994, Bill and his wife have already given over $50 billion to the foundation, which is the second-largest charitable foundation in the world. 

Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher attend a basketball between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Brooklyn Nets© Getty

Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis

Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis are planning to donate their children's entire inheritance to charity. Ashton, whose combined net worth with Mila is estimated at £218 million, said in a 2018 interview: "I'm not setting up a trust for them. We'll end up giving our money away to charity and to various things."

The Two and a Half Men star explained that his children are "living a really privileged life, and they don't even know it. And they'll never know it, because this is the only one that they'll know."

daniel craig tuxedo© Getty Images

Daniel Craig

Back in 2020, James Bond star Daniel Craig revealed that he's not leaving a penny of his estimated £120 million fortune to his children. 

The actor has two children, one of whom he welcomed with his wife Rachel Weisz in 2018. His eldest child, a daughter named Ella, is from his previous marriage to Fiona Loudon. 

Chatting to Saga magazine, the Knives Out actor said: "My philosophy is to get rid of it or give it away before you go.

"I don't want to leave great sums to the next generation."

SEE: Daniel Craig looks unrecognizable as he debuts transformation worlds away from James Bond

warren buffett © Photo: Getty Images

Warren Buffett

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who is a part founder of The Giving Pledge, has said he will donate 99 per cent of his personal wealth to charity.

Luckily for his three children, 1 per cent of their dad's £98 billion is s £9.8 billion, so we have a feeling they'll be just fine. 

ackie Chan visits 'Extra' at Universal Studios Hollywood on October 5, 2017 in Universal City, California© Getty Images

Jackie Chan

Jackie Chan doesn't plan on leaving any of his £323 million fortune to his children, and will donate it all to charity instead. 

In 2011, the actor told Forbes: "When I was a child, I was very poor and wanted everything. So when I got money I began buying things. Now I want to give away everything. When I give somebody something and see their face, it just makes me so happy."

David Furnish and Sir Elton John on red carpet © Getty Images

Sir Elton John

Sir Elton John is known for his extensive charity work, and was even named the UK's most charitable celebrity in 2016!

The music icon created the Elton John AIDS Foundation in 1992, which has supported over 100 charities and raised over £449 million to support HIV/AIDS programmes over the world. 

While Elton has a reported net worth of £450 million, his two sons, Zachary and Elijah, whom he shares with his husband David Furnish, won't inherit all of it. 

"Of course, I want to leave my boys in a very sound financial state," he told The Mirror in 2016. "But it's terrible to give kids a silver spoon. It ruins their life."

He went on to say: "Warren Buffet, the third wealthiest man in America, has a really cool model in that he leaves his children enough money so that they have a house, a car and all their basic needs covered and cared for so they never need worry. But it's not crazy, silly, go-wild money so that they could be buying Picassos or private jets."

MORE: Everything you need to know about Elton John's jaw-dropping £450 million fortune

WATCH: Elton John addresses Parliament urging leaders to do more to end Aids epidemic
Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber during a ceremony as he is given the key to the city honoring "The Phantom of The Opera's" final performance on Broadway© Getty Images

Andrew Lloyd Webber

Composer Andrew Lloyd Webber is planning to donate his fortune to the theatre industry. He previously told The Mirror that he doesn't "believe in inherited money at all".

Speaking about what he and his wife Madeleine will do with their estimated £504 million wealth, he said: "I know that both of us would like to see it spread around. We could use the royalties to encourage everything from bursaries to young artists and composers. I feel I owe a debt and that is very largely due to the success not only in Britain but also the rest of the world."

Mark Zuckerberg © Aurelien Meunier

Mark Zuckerberg

Back in 2015, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced that he and his wife Priscilla Chan would be donating 99 per cent of their wealth to charity, meaning his three daughters won't see the majority of their parents' estimated £89.7 billion fortune. 

In a statement released on Facebook at the time, the couple wrote: "We want you to grow up in a world better than ours today.

"We will do our part to make this happen, not only because we love you, but also because we have a moral responsibility to all children in the next generation."

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