The True Cost of Making A Movie

The True Cost of Making A Movie

The cost of making a movie in this day and age will cost a fortune. Given all of the pieces required to make a film, it makes sense where all of the money goes. Not many people realize it from a two hour movie playing on the screen but paying actors, actresses, marketing the movie, getting equipment, purchasing permits and paying extras can all rack up a hefty bill.

A budget for a film can be easily broken down into the following average percentages. For example, the cost of production which includes the salaries of those working in the film (actors, producers, directors, stage hands, etc.), can easily take up 50% of the budget of the film. 30% of the film’s budget alone can be used to distribute and market the film. And the remaining 20% are used for remaining costs such as music composition, props, and permits. Depending on the movie, the budget can be allocated differently. A movie with big name stars can put most of its budget into paying off their actors and actresses. Or a sci-fi film might spend most of its money on getting the best CGI and computer graphics to make the film possible.

Not all movies are made the same. Big budget blockbusters have more money and resources to get what they need done for the film. These films often have a budget of upwards 100 million dollars. On the other hand, smaller independent films tend to have smaller budgets. Independent films are funded by sources other than large studios like MGM, Disney or Lionsgate. To be creative in cutting costs, these independent films often have smaller casts and limited productions.

Regardless of what kind of movie it is or what it costs, making a movie often pays off in the end. Summer blockbusters can cost hundreds of millions of dollars to make but can end up generating over a billion dollars in profits. This is easily the case with movies like the Star Wars franchise or any of the Marvel superhero movies which make hundreds of millions of dollars globally. And although independent films do not have as much money as the bigger movies, they tend to have stronger writing and are well received by those who watch them. The true cost of making a movie can be quite expensive but no matter what the budget is, it can be made possible.

Robert Gillings is an award winning writer, producer, actor architectural designer, philosopher and financial consultant.

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