Revenue streams continue to flow for musicians and actors

Commerce and art closer than ever as entertainers find innovative ways to cash in on talent, writes Donal Lynch

Saoirse Ronan at last weekend’s Academy Awards

The story of entertainment-generated wealth over the last two decades is inextricably connected with the development of the internet. "It meant that everything that was creative suddenly was given away for free," the writer Jaron Lanier once said. Or if not "given", exactly, then stolen or digitally copied. This did not mean, of course, that there were no longer super-wealthy entertainers, but those who remained on the Rich List slowly changed the way they made the bulk of their money.