Another Way To Make Movies Cheaper: Forget The Stars
from the who-needs-'em? dept
Back in April, at the Cato Institute conference on copyrights, someone in the audience from NBC Universal challenged both me and professor David Levine with the same question: How can the movie industry continue to make $200 million movies without stronger copyright protection? Of course, that's the wrong question. People watching a movie don't care how much it costs to make a movie -- they just want a good movie. Back in May, we noted that one way to make a movie cheaper is to rely on newer technologies that make special effects much, much cheaper, taking out one element of the high cost of making movies. Another point, which Levine stated on his panel, is that a huge part of the budget in $200 million movies is the high cost of paying certain movie stars who are supposed to make the movie a success. Thanks to John for calling our attention to an article highlighting that for all the money that goes to the big A-list movie stars, there's no evidence they help a movie do any better. So, again, it appears that the answer to the guy at NBC Universal is pretty straightforward: don't make $200 million movies any more. That doesn't mean worse movies, it just means learn how to be smarter about spending money.