The 5 highest-paid CEOs of 2018, including $129 million for Discovery's David Zaslav

The highest-paid CEO of 2018 made nearly double that of the second-highest-paid CEO.

Discovery CEO David Zaslav earned $129 million in 2018, while Disney CEO Bob Iger earned $65 million, according to The Wall Street Journal. Other top earners of last year include AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson and Jefferies Group CEO Richard Handler.

Zaslav's earnings tripled from 2017 to 2018 due to an increase in stock options after he extended his contract through 2023, according to the Journal. His salary remained at $3 million. Iger extended his contract in 2017 through December 2021.

Iger and Stephenson recently guided their companies into industry-shaking mergers, and media continues to be a lucrative sector for CEOs. AT&T bought Time Warner last year for $85 billion. Disney bought Fox last year for $71 billion, and the deal officially closed last week. Both CEOs are now tasked with overseeing their respective mergers while also launching streaming services (both Disney+ and WarnerMedia's streaming service are expected to debut later this year).

Below are the highest-paid CEOs of 2018:

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The highest-paid CEOs of 2018
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The highest-paid CEOs of 2018

5. Randall Stephenson — AT&T

2018 salary: $29.12 million

4. Stephen MacMillan — Hologic

2018 salary: $42.04 million

3. Richard Handler — Jefferies Group

2018 salary: $44.67 million

2. Bob Iger — The Walt Disney Company

2018 salary: $65.65 million

1. David Zaslav — Discovery, Inc.

2018 salary: $129 million

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