16 janvier 2011

Cost Control Fail

What project can you produce with 3 million dollars?

Buried (2010/Rodrigo Cortés/ES/USA/FR)  estimated budget : $3 million
a 95 minutes long huis-clos, with a single actor (not even of B-list fame), 2 additional actors (for the 30 sec long cell-phone video), and a couple of voice actors (for the offscreen phone conversations), filmed entirely in a wooden box, little props (cellphone, lighter, knife, flash-light), one snake, and sand. That's all of it. You can film that in a couple of days.


Mistérios de Lisboa (2009/Raoul Ruiz/Portugal) estimated budget : €2 million (=$2.7 million)
a 6h long epic period drama TV mini-series (4h26 for the theatrical cut), with ensemble cast (over 60 actors), speaking in 4 different languages, shot in a couple of dozen locations (story spreading across 4 countries), plenty expensive costumes, XIXth century weapons, horses... Probably a couple of months of shooting.


Robin Hood (2010/Ridley Scott/USA) estimated budget = $210 million
it costs over 200 million dollar (70 times more!) to film another remake of Robin Hood, with a couple of A-list stars and lots of horses and extras. The price of 70 "three million dollar" films, such as the ones cited above. Does it worth it? It's not a CGI animation, nor a 3D movie. Hollywood really sucks at The Price Is Right.

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