movies, music and everything else

This blog is about pretty much what the title implies... movies, music and everything else.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

I like movies, music and everything esle... ; ) oh... and i can't spell, so, please, no comments

Monday, December 12, 2005

why do movies cost so much???

So I know that it has been a while since I have been writing. The truth is that I have not only been working, but I have not found anything that I feel I need to write about… until now.

All that I seem to read about is the ridiculous budget of movies now. Now there are movies that are costing 200 plus million dollars and no one is blinking an eye. All that they are talking about is the decline in box office. Is it because of DVDs? People talking in the theater? Bad movies? Really… who gives a damn… STOP SPENDING SO MUCH MONEY!!! Here are a couple things that really pisses me off about how movies waste money…

First and foremost… ACTORS GET PAID TOO MUCH. It has come to the point that if you are in one movie that is a hit, suddenly you can make 15 – 20 million dollars for your next movie. This is just absurd. In addition to that, actors are getting a percentage of the gross of a film as well. Twenty million is just not enough… they need a percentage of the gross? Take a movie like MEET THE FOCKERS… The budget of that movie was just over 100 million dollars. If you break that down… Ben Stiller ($20 million) Robert DeNiro ($20 million) Jay Roach ($20 million) Barbara Striesand ($10 million) Dustin Hoffman ($10 million)… what was left to actually make the movie? Only 20 million dollars.

What should they do? Put a salary cap on the actors. Let’s say that an actor can make no more than 5 million dollars for a movie. That is still a TON of money and it will not destroy a movies budget. If someone like a Mel Gibson or a Jim Carrey feels like them just being in a movie is going to guarantee the movie making lots of money… let them put their money where their mouth is… Take a risk with the studio. INSTEAD of a salary, take a percentage of the gross of the film. Let’s say with a cap of 5%. That way if Jim Carrey is in a movie that makes $485 million (BRUCE ALMIGHTY), he is going to make $24.25 million. If the movie bombs and only does $37 million (THE MAJESTIC)… he only gets $1.85 million. If the reason why actors get so much is because they bring in the people… they should take the risk if they want the reward.

If you implement this for MEET THE FOCKERS… if all of the people that made twenty million took a percentage and the others took 5 million, the budget would have been thirty million and since the movie was a hit ($515 million world wide), they would have made as follows… Stiller ($25.75 million), DeNiro ($25.75 million), Roach ($25.75 million). They would have shared in the risk with the studio and they would have made more money and deserved it. The studio would have made more of a profit as well. It just seems more logical to me. I know that this will never happen, but it should.

Another thing is the perks that come with actors/directors and movies in general. Money is just thrown away to make people happy on movies. If you really look at it, it can make you sick. Every “big” actor gets a huge trailer and most of the time gets an entourage. (this can include an assistant, driver, trainer, chef, AD, and many more) All of this is paid for by production. The other thing is the perk package. On top of all the money, actors can get a lump some for spending money to keep them happy. In one example, an actor (unnamed) made $20 million for a movie and got an additional $2 million just to spend and to keep him happy. Anything they would ever want (not need, but want) is provided for them buy the movie studio. If you limited or got rid of this way of spoiling the actors, I think that you couple save at least 5 – 10% of the money that is spent on movies.

The last thing that I will bitch about is this…
Pirates of the Caribbean 2 & 3 have a combined budget of $500 million… that is $250 million a piece. This was before shooting began and this was before the scripts were completed. The movies started shooting without finished screenplays! Is that a problem? Just throw more money at it. That seems to be the solution here in Hollywood.

It just really makes me mad to hear the importance of the box office being discussed when there is so much unnecessary waste going on every day. If things do not change in some way, movies as we know them are going to be gone. This is going to bankrupt studios. There is no doubt in my mind…

Enough ranting.


Blogger David said...

Why should we care how much studios spend for their movies? They rarely ever spend more than they bring in, so it likely isn't going to hurt movies for the fans. Your post seems mostly jealousy-driven, to me. Let Hollywood throw money around like they do. Who cares? If you want to complain about the way money is spent and have a legit argument, turn your attention towards our government...

3:46 PM  
Blogger Humby said...

i care because i work in the film industry. it does effect me and it effects everyone that goes and sees movies. the cost of making a movie dictates the price of tickets as well as the types of films that are made. i would rather a movie be good than big. i would rather a well written script than tons of special effects. as far as movies rarely spending more than they make... you should check your facts on that one. it is just plain wrong. also... government spending is not what i am writing about on this blog, so that is a discussion (that i do think is valid) for another venue.

4:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I work in the industry and something else that really annoys me are actors who feel privilaged enough to bring their pets (especially dogs) to roam around where they clearly do not belong. The pets usually disrupt other crew and get into all sorts of mischief, and nobody can do or say Boo because they don't want to upset the star and lose their job. It's funny how actors won't bring their children to the set, but don't think twice about burdening everyone with their rambunctious animals.

11:22 AM  
Anonymous Blackhaven said...

I am in the process of making an independent film. Right now my whole budget is out of pocket. That budget includes the purchases of all the equipment to make the film a all the little things that go with it. As it stands right now I am trying to finalize my script.(which is the accumulation of 14 years work.) I would more then likely fall over dead if I got even fifty thousand dollars to make my vision reality. So when you’re talking about two hundred and fifty million dollar budgets it’s almost making me sick. I went to see “the happening” and “The Hulk” the other day. I sat and watched a good fifteen minutes of credits. I was reading things like assistant to the assistant this or that… Anyway, it seems that they could streamline production and remove a few unneeded assistants. I know some of them may be needed it just seems to me that there are a lot of people sucking off the fat of the Hollywood cash cow. I can remember when I was young watching the credits at the start of a film…Imagine what would happen if they did that now. I guess part of my replying to this is in fact envy of these multimillion dollar budgets. I mean it would be nice if I could just show up and direct and have three assistants. However, something deep in me is screaming at me telling me to avoid the whole Hollywood scene. It seems to me that deep down I feel that I would loose the soul of my work for a quick cash fix and some comfort. I have invested too much of my life into my vision to have a corporate giant tell me what I meant when I wrote something and how I should film it. I know I have ranted myself and diverged from the topic. I agree with your premise. As for me I will stay in the trenches and plug away one nickel at a time. Who knows maybe someday we will work together and not even know it? *chuckles*

12:00 AM  
Anonymous The Truth said...

Your article speaks the truth! Why should I be a struggling professional and work my ass off to go to the movies for a night and drop $100 of my hard earned money, just so they can raise prices next month so they can pay another actor another $20,000,000? It pisses me off to no end!

8:15 PM  
Anonymous acoshady said...

if actors earned less money it will only mean that the studio owners or directors will make more. it would be reasonable to cut off all their big checks ( as if they wont be "big" with a couple of mills ) and lower the prices on tickets.

dont think thats gonna happen, so it doesnt matter if an actor gets 20mil or the director.

for example Michael Bay got 75mil for transformers and will get even more for the sequel.

5:57 PM  

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