James Bond Is Costing The Studio $300 Million

By all expectations, the upcoming 24th installment of the James Bond franchise, SPECTRE, should build upon the critical and box office successes of Skyfall. The last Bond film was made on a seemingly huge budget of $200 million, but it was all worth it, because people loved it (especially compared to Quantum of Solace) and it earned more than $1.1 billion worldwide at the box office. So keep to that formula and SPECTRE should be another huge payday for everyone involved, right MGM, Columbia Pictures and Sony? Well, maybe not so much.

The recent leaks revealed, among what seems to be a billion emails and documents, that SPECTRE is on pace to become one of the most expensive films ever made, if not THE most expensive film. According to “internal memos” and emails written by MGM President Jonathan Glickman, the budget for SPECTRE is already at a whopping $300 million, and everyone involved in making this film needs to team up and work toward saving money on the actual filming process, which hasn’t even started. Maybe they could start with locking the garage in Germany.

(WARNING: Very mild spoiler in this leak, but it’s nothing important.)

He says the current budget “sits in the mid $300Ms,” but the studio has to drastically cut back to $250 million. And the shooting period already costs $50 million more than the previous film, “Skyfall.”

His suggestions show some Hollywood tricks:

Villa in Rome? It’s a nighttime scene, so try doing it in London instead.

There’s fighting on a train! Again! But use fewer carriages — three instead of four.

Forget the dramatic finale in the rain. It’ll lower the cost of visual/special effects.

Earn an extra $6 million by showing “the more modern aspects” of Mexico to maximize “the Mexican incentive.” (The makers of Spectre are getting paid to film there.)

“We recognize that this movie needs to build on the past few films – and there are expectations we must meet for the audience. Still, we must find further cuts,” Glickman says. “This is not about ‘nickel and diming’ the production.” (Via CNN)

Look, I clearly love the Bond movies as much as the next guy, but what the hell costs so much that Sam Mendes and Co. are spending almost 10-times the 2014 payroll of the Miami Marlins? Is Daniel Craig keeping the cars, weapons and clothes? Are they using real bullets and paying for medical treatment on all wounds? Are they blowing up castles in Scotland that are actually important and worth tens of millions of dollars? Has The Illegitimates come true and a real Bond is leaving babies all over the world that MGM is left to pay for?

Maybe instead of the Aston Martin DB10, Bond’s customized vehicle in SPECTRE can be a public bus.