Film budgeting
Film budgeting refers to the process by which a line producer, unit production manager or filmmaker prepares a budget
A budget is a financial plan and a list of all planned expenses and revenues. It is a plan for saving, borrowing and spending. A budget is an important concept in microeconomics, which uses a budget line to illustrate the trade-offs between two or more goods...

 for a film production. This document, which could be over 150 pages long, is used to secure financing for the film and lead to pre-production and production of the film. Multiple drafts of the budget may be required to whittle down costs. A budget is typically divided into four sections: above the line (filmmaking) (creative talent), below the line (filmmaking) (direct production costs), post-production
Post-production is part of filmmaking and the video production process. It occurs in the making of motion pictures, television programs, radio programs, advertising, audio recordings, photography, and digital art...

 (editing, visual effects, etc), and other (insurance
In law and economics, insurance is a form of risk management primarily used to hedge against the risk of a contingent, uncertain loss. Insurance is defined as the equitable transfer of the risk of a loss, from one entity to another, in exchange for payment. An insurer is a company selling the...

, completion bond, etc).


  • Story rights: The right to produce a film based on a play, novel, video game or as a remake or sequel can cost anything from a couple of thousand (Leaving Las Vegas
    Leaving Las Vegas
    Leaving Las Vegas is a 1995 romantic drama film directed and written by Mike Figgis, based on a semi-autobiographical novel of the same name by John O'Brien. Nicolas Cage stars as a suicidal alcoholic who has ended his personal and professional life to drink himself to death in Las Vegas...

    ) to over $10 million (the video game Halo
    Halo (video game series)
    Halo is a multi-million dollar science fiction video game franchise created by Bungie and now managed by 343 Industries and owned by Microsoft Studios. The series centers on an interstellar war between humanity and a theocratic alliance of aliens known as the Covenant...

    ). An original screenplay by a Writers Guild of America
    Writers Guild of America
    The Writers Guild of America is a generic term referring to the joint efforts of two different US labor unions:* The Writers Guild of America, East , representing TV and film writers East of the Mississippi....

     member costs from a minimum of around $50,000 (Quentin Tarantino's
    Quentin Tarantino
    Quentin Jerome Tarantino is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, cinematographer and actor. In the early 1990s, he began his career as an independent filmmaker with films employing nonlinear storylines and the aestheticization of violence...

     True Romance
    True Romance
    True Romance is a 1993 American romance crime film written by Quentin Tarantino and directed by Tony Scott. The film stars Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette with an ensemble cast consisting of Christopher Walken, Dennis Hopper, Gary Oldman, Chris Penn, Tom Sizemore, Samuel L. Jackson, Kevin...

    ) to $5 million (M. Night Shyamalan
    M. Night Shyamalan
    Manoj Nelliyattu Shyamalan,known professionally as M. Night Shyamalan, is an Indian-born American screenwriter, film director, and producer known for making movies with contemporary supernatural plots that climax with a twist ending. He is also known for filming his movies in and around...

    's Unbreakable).
  • Screenplay
    A screenplay or script is a written work that is made especially for a film or television program. Screenplays can be original works or adaptations from existing pieces of writing. In them, the movement, actions, expression, and dialogues of the characters are also narrated...

    : An A-list screenwriter
    Screenwriters or scriptwriters or scenario writers are people who write/create the short or feature-length screenplays from which mass media such as films, television programs, Comics or video games are based.-Profession:...

     can be paid $1 million to write the first three drafts of a script, with a further $1 to $2 million sole credit bonus. Once the story has been agreed upon and the script locked, script doctor
    Script doctor
    A script doctor, also called script consultant, is a highly-skilled screenwriter, hired by a film or television production, to rewrite or polish specific aspects of an existing screenplay, including structure, characterization, dialogue, pacing, theme, and other elements...

    s may be called upon to revise the final draft at $100,000 to $200,000 a week. Recently, Columbia Pictures
    Columbia Pictures
    Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film production and distribution company. Columbia Pictures now forms part of the Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate Sony. It is one of the leading film companies...

     has been offering the best screenwriters 2 percent of the gross profits (after the production and marketing budget has been deducted). Typically the development of a script consumes 5 percent of a film's budget.
  • Producers: Film producer
    Film producer
    A film producer oversees and delivers a film project to all relevant parties while preserving the integrity, voice and vision of the film. They will also often take on some financial risk by using their own money, especially during the pre-production period, before a film is fully financed.The...

    s and executive producer
    Executive producer
    An executive producer is a producer who is not involved in any technical aspects of the film making or music process, but who is still responsible for the overall production...

    s are often well-paid, with a top producer earning a seven-figure salary upfront as well as bonuses and a share of the profits. (Often a producer will be given 40 percent of the net profits). For Spider-Man
    Spider-Man (film)
    Spider-Man is a 2002 American superhero film, the first in the Spider-Man film series based on the fictional Marvel Comics character Spider-Man. It was directed by Sam Raimi and written by David Koepp...

    , producer Laura Ziskin
    Laura Ziskin
    Laura Ellen Ziskin was an American film producer. In 1990, Ziskin was the sole executive producer of the hit comedy Pretty Woman...

     is estimated to have been paid over $30 million.
  • Director: The DGA
    Directors Guild of America
    Directors Guild of America is an entertainment labor union which represents the interests of film and television directors in the United States motion picture industry...

     minimum is about $14,000 a week, for a minimum of ten weeks' work. An A-list film director
    Film director
    A film director is a person who directs the actors and film crew in filmmaking. They control a film's artistic and dramatic nathan roach, while guiding the technical crew and actors.-Responsibilities:...

     can command $5 to $10 million a film. Traditionally, a director's salary is about 7 percent of the final budget.
  • Cast: An A-list actor can ask for anything from $10 million to $30 million, plus $3 million in perks (trailer, entourage, etc.) and 10-20 percent of the gross profits. The rest of the cast, by comparison, can often come out much worse with many being paid the Screen Actors Guild
    Screen Actors Guild
    The Screen Actors Guild is an American labor union representing over 200,000 film and television principal performers and background performers worldwide...

     minimum (as low as $100/day on an Ultra-Low Budget film). Sometimes an actor will accept a minimal fee in exchange for a more lucrative share of the profits. Union extras are paid around $130 per day (plus extra for overtime or if they provide their own wardrobe) but on a low-budget film non-union extras are paid less, sometimes nothing at all.
  • Production costs: The cost of actually shooting the film including sets, wardrobe, location filming, hotels and transportation. The most prestigious productions will often employ the most successful, and therefore most expensive, crew, with the director of photography
    A cinematographer is one photographing with a motion picture camera . The title is generally equivalent to director of photography , used to designate a chief over the camera and lighting crews working on a film, responsible for achieving artistic and technical decisions related to the image...

     usually the highest paid at about $500,000 to $1 million. Shooting costs could easily amount to $500,000 a day for 100 days.
  • Visual effects: Employing a hundred employees of Industrial Light and Magic
    Industrial Light and Magic
    Industrial Light & Magic is an Academy Award-winning motion picture visual effects company that was founded in May 1975 by George Lucas and is owned by Lucasfilm. Lucas created the company when he discovered that the special effects department at 20th Century Fox was shut down after he was given...

     for over a year can turn a big-budget film into a mega-budget film. Computer-generated imagery
    Computer-generated imagery
    Computer-generated imagery is the application of the field of computer graphics or, more specifically, 3D computer graphics to special effects in art, video games, films, television programs, commercials, simulators and simulation generally, and printed media...

     (CGI) work in post-production
    Post-production is part of filmmaking and the video production process. It occurs in the making of motion pictures, television programs, radio programs, advertising, audio recordings, photography, and digital art...

     can be expensive; such work on The Hulk
    Hulk (film)
    Hulk is a 2003 American superhero film based on the fictional Marvel Comics character of the same name. Ang Lee directed the film, which stars Eric Bana as Dr. Bruce Banner, as well as Jennifer Connelly, Sam Elliott, Josh Lucas, and Nick Nolte...

     is estimated to have cost $100 million.
  • Music: The top film composers can ask for a seven-figure salary to compose an hour or so of original film score
    Film score
    A film score is original music written specifically to accompany a film, forming part of the film's soundtrack, which also usually includes dialogue and sound effects...

    . An original song by Christina Aguilera
    Christina Aguilera
    Christina María Aguilera is an American recording artist and actress. Aguilera first appeared on national television in 1990 as a contestant on the Star Search program, and went on to star in Disney Channel's television series The Mickey Mouse Club from 1993–1994...

     (Shark Tale
    Shark Tale
    Shark Tale is a 2004 American computer-animated comedy film produced by DreamWorks Animation. In the story, a young fish named Oscar falsely claims to have killed the son of a shark mob boss to win favour with the mob boss' enemies and advance his own community standing...

    ) or Kanye West
    Kanye West
    Kanye Omari West is an American rapper, singer, and record producer. West first rose to fame as a producer for Roc-A-Fella Records, where he eventually achieved recognition for his work on Jay-Z's album The Blueprint, as well as hit singles for musical artists including Alicia Keys, Ludacris, and...

     (Mission: Impossible III
    Mission: Impossible III
    Mission: Impossible III is a 2006 spy film, the third based on the spy-themed television series Mission: Impossible starring Tom Cruise who reprises his role of IMF agent Ethan Hunt....

    ) could cost $1 million, and the right to use a song by David Bowie
    David Bowie
    David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

     or The Beatles
    The Beatles
    The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

     could cost $300,000. (In addition, the artist may wish to see a screening of the film to see if it meets their approval; Bowie did so with the film Training Day
    Training Day
    Training Day is a 2001 crime drama film directed by Antoine Fuqua, written by David Ayer, starring Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke. The film follows two LAPD narcotics detectives over a 24-hour period in the gang neighborhoods of South and East Los Angeles.The film was a box office success and...

    , giving the film a good amount of pre-release publicity.). More recently, the rights to have Led Zeppelin's
    Led Zeppelin
    Led Zeppelin were an English rock band, active in the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s. Formed in 1968, they consisted of guitarist Jimmy Page, singer Robert Plant, bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham...

     "Whole Lotta Love
    Whole Lotta Love
    "Whole Lotta Love" is a song by English rock band Led Zeppelin. It is featured as the opening track on the band's second album, Led Zeppelin II, and was released in the United States and Japan as a single. The US release became their first hit single, it was certified Gold on 13 April 1970, when it...

    " on the film Lords of Dogtown
    Lords of Dogtown
    Lords of Dogtown is a 2005 biographical film directed by Catherine Hardwicke, written by Stacy Peralta. The film is based on the story of "The Z-Boys", an influential group of skateboarders who revolutionized the sport...

     cost producers $3 million. Sometimes a film will turn to unknown or little-known artists willing to licence the rights to their song for a small fee in exchange for the publicity. Typically, the music budget of a major motion picture is about 8 percent of the final total; Spider-Man
    Spider-Man (film)
    Spider-Man is a 2002 American superhero film, the first in the Spider-Man film series based on the fictional Marvel Comics character Spider-Man. It was directed by Sam Raimi and written by David Koepp...

    's music budget was $4.5 million, including a brand-new song by Chad Kroeger
    Chad Kroeger
    Chad Robert Kroeger is aCanadian songwriter, singer, and guitarist best known as the lead vocalist and guitarist for the Canadian rock band Nickelback...


Tactics for cutting costs

  • Eliminate night scenes. Shooting at night requires powerful/expensive lighting and the payment of nighttime rates to the crew. Broken Arrow
    Broken Arrow (1996 film)
    Broken Arrow is a 1996 American action film directed by John Woo, written by Graham Yost, and starring John Travolta and Christian Slater. The original music score was composed by Hans Zimmer, and features guitarist Duane Eddy. It deals with the theft of an American nuclear weapon.The film received...

     cut costs by millions of dollars by getting rid of the night scenes from the script. Many directors choose to use the 'day for night
    Day for night
    Day for night, also known as nuit américaine , is the name for cinematographic techniques used to simulate a night scene; such as using tungsten-balanced rather than daylight-balanced film stock or with special blue filters and also under-exposing the shot to create the illusion of darkness or...

    ' technique.
  • Avoid location filming in famous or commercial areas. Shooting a scene on, for example, the Golden Gate Bridge
    Golden Gate Bridge
    The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the Golden Gate, the opening of the San Francisco Bay into the Pacific Ocean. As part of both U.S. Route 101 and California State Route 1, the structure links the city of San Francisco, on the northern tip of the San Francisco Peninsula, to...

    , requires stopping traffic with a resultant drop in revenue to the city of San Francisco
    San Francisco, California
    San Francisco , officially the City and County of San Francisco, is the financial, cultural, and transportation center of the San Francisco Bay Area, a region of 7.15 million people which includes San Jose and Oakland...

    . Filming such a scene for Interview with the Vampire
    Interview with the Vampire
    Interview with the Vampire is a vampire novel by Anne Rice written in 1973 and published in 1976. It was the first novel to feature the enigmatic vampire Lestat, and was followed by several sequels, collectively known as The Vampire Chronicles...

     cost Warner Bros. $500,000. Shifting the location to the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge
    San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge
    The San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge is a pair of bridges spanning San Francisco Bay of California, in the United States. Forming part of Interstate 80 and of the direct road route between San Francisco and Oakland, it carries approximately 270,000 vehicles per day on its two decks...

     for close-up
    In filmmaking, television production, still photography and the comic strip medium a close-up tightly frames a person or an object. Close-ups are one of the standard shots used regularly with medium shots and long shots . Close-ups display the most detail, but they do not include the broader scene...

    s could save hundreds of thousands of dollars in location fees. Some locations are more willing to allow filming than others - commercial enterprises such as hotels and nightclubs. Some producers of low-budget features avoid paying location fees and seek to capture shots by subterfuge.
  • Film action scenes early on Sunday morning. Stopping traffic for a car chase
    Car chase
    A car chase is the vehicular pursuit of a suspect by law enforcement officers. Car chases are often captured on film and broadcast due to the availability of video footage recorded by police cars and police and media helicopters participating in the chase...

     scene is easier in the early hours of Sunday morning, when traffic is at its lightest.
  • Use unknown cast members rather than stars.
  • Ask above-the-line talent to defer their salaries. In exchange for dropping their large upfront salaries, actors, directors and producers can receive a large share of the film's gross profits. This has the disadvantage of cutting the financier's eventual takings. It has the further disadvantage of ambiguity. 'gross profits is customarily defined as the profits remaining after production and distribution expenses are subtracted from revenues. Disagreements over accounting methods can lead to audit
    The general definition of an audit is an evaluation of a person, organization, system, process, enterprise, project or product. The term most commonly refers to audits in accounting, but similar concepts also exist in project management, quality management, and energy conservation.- Accounting...

    s and even litigation, as happened between Peter Jackson
    Peter Jackson
    Sir Peter Robert Jackson, KNZM is a New Zealand film director, producer, actor, and screenwriter, known for his The Lord of the Rings film trilogy , adapted from the novel by J. R. R...

     and New Line Cinema
    New Line Cinema
    New Line Cinema, often simply referred to as New Line, is an American film studio. It was founded in 1967 by Robert Shaye and Michael Lynne as a film distributor, later becoming an independent film studio. It became a subsidiary of Time Warner in 1996 and was merged with larger sister studio Warner...

     over dividing up the profits from the hugely-successful Lord of the Rings film trilogy
    The Lord of the Rings film trilogy
    The Lord of the Rings is an epic film trilogy consisting of three fantasy adventure films based on the three-volume book of the same name by English author J. R. R. Tolkien. The films are The Fellowship of the Ring , The Two Towers and The Return of the King .The films were directed by Peter...

    , which grossed over 2 billion USD
    United States dollar
    The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

  • Use a non-union crew. Not an option for studios that have signed contracts with the unions—the Directors Guild of America
    Directors Guild of America
    Directors Guild of America is an entertainment labor union which represents the interests of film and television directors in the United States motion picture industry...

     (DGA), Writers Guild of America
    Writers Guild of America
    The Writers Guild of America is a generic term referring to the joint efforts of two different US labor unions:* The Writers Guild of America, East , representing TV and film writers East of the Mississippi....

     (WGA), and Screen Actors Guild
    Screen Actors Guild
    The Screen Actors Guild is an American labor union representing over 200,000 film and television principal performers and background performers worldwide...

     (SAG). Directors Robert Rodriguez and Peter Jackson have been known to use the skills of experienced non-union crews for their films.
  • Film in another region. For example, many Hollywood movies set in U.S. cities are shot in Canada
    Hollywood North
    Hollywood North, an allusion to Hollywood, Los Angeles, United States, a notable film centre in the world, is a colloquialism used to describe film production industries and or film locations north of its namesake...

     to take advantage of lower labour costs, subject to fluctuating exchange rate
    Exchange rate
    In finance, an exchange rate between two currencies is the rate at which one currency will be exchanged for another. It is also regarded as the value of one country’s currency in terms of another currency...

    s. As well, they take advantage of federal and provincial subsidies
    A subsidy is an assistance paid to a business or economic sector. Most subsidies are made by the government to producers or distributors in an industry to prevent the decline of that industry or an increase in the prices of its products or simply to encourage it to hire more labor A subsidy (also...

     designed to grow and sustain the film and television production industries in the area. Many U.S. state
    U.S. state
    A U.S. state is any one of the 50 federated states of the United States of America that share sovereignty with the federal government. Because of this shared sovereignty, an American is a citizen both of the federal entity and of his or her state of domicile. Four states use the official title of...

    s have responded with tax incentives of their own (Movie production incentives in the United States
    Movie production incentives in the United States
    Movie production incentives are offered on a state-by-state basis throughout the United States to encourage in-state film production. These incentives came about in the 1990s in response to the flight of movie productions to other countries such as Canada. Since then, states have offered...

    ). The Czech Republic
    Czech Republic
    The Czech Republic is a landlocked country in Central Europe. The country is bordered by Poland to the northeast, Slovakia to the east, Austria to the south, and Germany to the west and northwest....

    , Australia
    Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

    , and New Zealand
    New Zealand
    New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

     are other countries in which Hollywood movies are often filmed.

The budget as an advertising tool

For blockbuster movies, high budgets are advertised to imply that the film will be worth watching. On the other hand, El Mariachi
El Mariachi
El Mariachi is a 1992 Mexican-American action film that is the debut of writer/director Robert Rodriguez. The Spanish language film was shot in the northern Mexican bordertown of Ciudad Acuña with a mainly amateur cast...

 was advertised as having a shoestring budget of $7,000. El Mariachi's actual budget including the distribution costs far exceeded $7,000. The festival print of El Mariachi was in fact made for $7,000. The additional budget expenditures came when the movie was picked up for distribution by a studio.

Going over budget

In the US film production system, producers are not allowed to exceed the initial budget. Exceptions have of course been made, one of the most notable examples being Titanic
Titanic (1997 film)
Titanic is a 1997 American epic romance and disaster film directed, written, co-produced, and co-edited by James Cameron. A fictionalized account of the sinking of the RMS Titanic, it stars Leonardo DiCaprio as Jack Dawson, Kate Winslet as Rose DeWitt Bukater and Billy Zane as Rose's fiancé, Cal...

. Director James Cameron ran aground with the budget and offered his fee back to the studio. In other countries, producers who exceed their budget tend to eat the cost by receiving less of their producer's fees. While the US system is profitable and can afford to go over budget, other countries' film industries tend to be financed through government subsidies.


Though movie studios are reluctant to release the precise details of their movies' budgets, it has occasionally been possible to obtain (clandestinely) details of the cost of films breaks down. For an example of a budget for a $2 million independent feature, see Planning the Low-Budget Film
Planning the Low-Budget Film
Planning the Low-Budget Film is a book by Robert Latham Brown describing the processes involved in scheduling and budgeting motion pictures....

 by Robert Latham Brown
Robert Latham Brown
Robert Latham Brown is a film producer, line producer, production manager, author, and teacher. In his 30-year film career, he has worked with Mel Brooks, George Lucas, Paul Verhoeven, Steven Spielberg and many others. His expertise in budgeting and line producing inspired Mel Brooks to nickname...

 (ISBN 0-9768178-0-2).


  • Story rights and Screenplay: $5,000,000
  • Producers: $1,878,260
  • Director (M. Night Shyamalan
    M. Night Shyamalan
    Manoj Nelliyattu Shyamalan,known professionally as M. Night Shyamalan, is an Indian-born American screenwriter, film director, and producer known for making movies with contemporary supernatural plots that climax with a twist ending. He is also known for filming his movies in and around...

     & Assistant): $5,081,749
  • Cast: $ 31,903,987
    • Bruce Willis
      Bruce Willis
      Walter Bruce Willis , better known as Bruce Willis, is an American actor, producer, and musician. His career began in television in the 1980s and has continued both in television and film since, including comedic, dramatic, and action roles...

      : $20,000,000
    • Samuel L. Jackson
      Samuel L. Jackson
      Samuel Leroy Jackson is an American film and television actor and film producer. After becoming involved with the Civil Rights Movement, he moved on to acting in theater at Morehouse College, and then films. He had several small roles such as in the film Goodfellas before meeting his mentor,...

      : $7,000,000
    • Robin Wright Penn: $2,500,000
    • Rest of Cast, Casting, Stunts, & Travel: $5,568,388
  • Production costs: $26,214,709
    • Visual effects: $1,000,000
    • Music: $2,253,456

Total: $73,243,106

Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life
Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life
Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life is a 2003 action film directed by Jan de Bont, and starring Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft. It is a sequel to the 2001 film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider...

  • Story rights and screenplay: $4 million
  • Producers: $4 million
  • Director (Jan de Bont
    Jan de Bont
    Jan de Bont is a Dutch cinematographer, producer, and film director.-Early life and career:De Bont was born, one of 17 children, to a Roman Catholic family in Eindhoven, Netherlands. His earliest work after studying at the Amsterdam Film Academy was with the Dutch avant garde director Adriaan...

    ): $5 million
  • Cast: $17.25 million
    • Angelina Jolie: $12 million
    • Extras: $250,000
    • Other (inc. Angelina's perks): $5 million
  • Production costs: $67 million
    • Set design and construction: $17.8 million
  • Visual Effects: $13 million
  • Music: $3.3 million
  • Editing: $3 million
  • Post Production costs: $1.5 million

Total: $118 million

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, commonly abbreviated as T3, is a 2003 science fiction action film directed by Jonathan Mostow and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nick Stahl, Claire Danes and Kristanna Loken...

  • Story rights (Carolco
    Carolco Pictures
    Carolco Pictures, Inc., Carolco International N.V., or Anabasis Investments was an American independent film production company that, within a decade, went from producing such blockbuster successes as Terminator 2: Judgment Day and the first three movies of the Rambo series to being bankrupted by...

     and Gale Anne Hurd
    Gale Anne Hurd
    Gale Anne Hurd is an American film producer and screenwriter.-Early life:Hurd was born in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of Lolita and Frank E. Hurd, an investor. She grew up in Palm Springs, California and graduated from Stanford University with a B.A...

    ): $19.5 million
  • Screenplay: $5.2 million
    • John D. Brancato & Michael Ferris: $1 million
  • Director (Jonathan Mostow
    Jonathan Mostow
    Jonathan Mostow is an American film director, writer and producer.-Biography:A graduate of Hopkins School in New Haven, Connecticut and Harvard, Mostow also trained at the American Repertory Company and New York City's Lee Strasberg Institute...

    ): $5 million
  • Producers: $10 million
  • Cast: $35 million
    • Arnold Schwarzenegger
      Arnold Schwarzenegger
      Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger is an Austrian-American former professional bodybuilder, actor, businessman, investor, and politician. Schwarzenegger served as the 38th Governor of California from 2003 until 2011....

      : $29.25 million + 20% gross profits
    • Arnold's perks: $1.5 million
    • Rest of principal cast: $3.85 million
    • Extras: $450,000
  • Production costs: $58 million
  • Post-production costs: $4 million
  • Visual effects: $20 million
  • Music: $2 million
  • Other costs: $33.6 million

Total: $187.3 million

Spider-Man 2
Spider-Man 2
Spider-Man 2 is a 2004 American superhero film directed by Sam Raimi, written by Alvin Sargent and developed by Alfred Gough, Miles Millar, and Michael Chabon. It is the second film in the Spider-Man film franchise based on the fictional Marvel Comics character Spider-Man...

  • Story rights: $20 million
  • Screenplay: $10 million
  • Producers: $15 million
  • Director (Sam Raimi
    Sam Raimi
    Samuel Marshall "Sam" Raimi is an American film director, producer, actor and writer. He is best known for directing cult horror films like the Evil Dead series, Darkman and Drag Me to Hell, as well as the blockbuster Spider-Man films and the producer of the successful TV series Hercules: The...

    ): $10 million
  • Cast: $30 million
    • Tobey Maguire
      Tobey Maguire
      Tobias Vincent "Tobey" Maguire is an American actor and producer. He began his career in the 1980s, and has achieved his greatest fame for his role as Peter Parker/Spider-Man in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man films.-Early life:...

      : $17 million
    • Kirsten Dunst
      Kirsten Dunst
      Kirsten Caroline Dunst is an American actress, singer and model. She made her film debut in Oedipus Wrecks, a short film directed by Woody Allen for the anthology New York Stories...

      : $7 million
    • Alfred Molina
      Alfred Molina
      Alfred Molina is a British-born American actor. He first came to public attention in the UK for his supporting role in the 1987 film Prick Up Your Ears...

      : $3 million
    • Rest of cast: $3 million
  • Production costs: $45 million
  • Visual effects: $65 million
  • Music: $5 million
    • Composer (Danny Elfman
      Danny Elfman
      Daniel Robert "Danny" Elfman is an American composer, best known for scoring music for television and film. Up until 1995, he was the lead singer and songwriter in the rock band Oingo Boingo, a group he formed in 1976...

      ): $2 million.

Total: $200 million

Sahara (2005 film)
Sahara is a 2005 action-comedy adventure film directed by Breck Eisner and based on the best-selling book of the same name by Clive Cussler...

The Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times is a daily newspaper published in Los Angeles, California, since 1881. It was the second-largest metropolitan newspaper in circulation in the United States in 2008 and the fourth most widely distributed newspaper in the country....

 presented an extensive special report, dissecting the budget of the 2005 film Sahara. The documents had become public domain
Public domain
Works are in the public domain if the intellectual property rights have expired, if the intellectual property rights are forfeited, or if they are not covered by intellectual property rights at all...

 after a lawsuit involving the film.

See also

  • List of highest-grossing films
  • List of most expensive films
  • List of least expensive films
  • Box office bomb
    Box office bomb
    The phrase box office bomb refers to a film for which the production and marketing costs greatly exceeded the revenue regained by the movie studio. This should not be confused with Hollywood accounting when official figures show large losses, yet the movie is a financial success.A film's financial...

  • Hollywood accounting
    Hollywood accounting
    Hollywood accounting refers to the opaque accounting methods used by the film, video and television industry to budget and record profits for film projects...

  • Film finance
    Film finance
    Film finance is an aspect of film production that occurs during the development stage prior to pre-production, and is concerned with determining the potential value of a proposed film...

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