Wednesday, December 20, 2006

How Much For "Spider-Man 3?"

An LATimes story about all the sequels scheduled for 2007 (like "Shrek The Third," "Spider-Man 3," the latest "Harry Potter" and "Pirates 3") covers the usual ground. (It's nice to know Daniel Radcliffe is getting $14 mil for the new movie since he's the linchpin of a multibillion dollar enterprise.) But at the end they include estimated budgets of some of the movies, with "Pirates of the Caribbean 3" at $280 million and "Spider-Man 3" at $260 million, to give two of the most striking examples. $260 million for one movie? I remember when having a $100 million budget seemed grotesque and embarrassing to Hollywood. It was last week, I think. Suddenly, "Titanic" looks like a bargain. Unless these movies gross $800 milllion worldwide, they're flops. But given the built-in appeal of these franchises (where the laws of diminishing returns don't apply anymore), they will. It seems like a big roll of the dice, but if you were a movie studio, wouldn't you gladly pick any of them up at those prices?

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