I wonder how much the top animators like Imaishi, Yoh Yoshinari, Yusuke Yoshigaki, Sushio, Tadashi Hiramatsu etc. get paid. Just to pick on Gainax animators.
I did read somewhere that animators are paid by the cut, not by length or complexity. I guess the idea is it evens its self out overall. If that's the case, you've got to be pretty hardcore to do full animation anywhere.