The new A-List of stars was released this week and the up coming stars are more affordable than ever before. Jennifer Lawrence (Hunger Games, X-Men, Silver Lining Playbook) who I’ve met, and Anne Hathaway (Les Misérables, The Dark Knight Rises, Alice in wonderland) both bring in about $5MM for a picture – Causing my producer and me to have a serious discussion about raising our $6MM budget to a $40MM picture.
Unfortunately, comparable men to play across from these reasonably priced stars are 2X – 3X more costly. While the thought of discrimination might pop into one’s mind, studios can quickly support the fact that men pull in a far greater audience than women, both nationally and internationally. In fact, very few women can create box office draw overseas.
This comes down to the audience’s taste. Men and women enjoy watching men on screen, but few men will watch a woman on screen. Angelina Jolie is the exception to the rule, as enough men will watch her in the up coming Salt 2 to drive her pay to $20MM.
We decided that for Working Title, we would shift to the TV A-List and sign actors in the low to mid six-figure range – Not bad for eight weeks of work. The top three stars will be very well known and the next level of stars will be faces that you’re very familiar with. The remainder of the cast will include local and new talent.
There is one exception. We’ve decided to film the banquet fundraising scene last and invite all of our investors, friends and family to play donors in the film. We will serve real food and not only shoot the scenes needed, but we’ll turn the event into our wrap party. And, I’ve already chatted with a few actors who thought they’d like to stop in for a cameo during the fundraising scene, so get ready to be surprised.
What better way to thank those supporting our vision, than introducing them to the stars, cast and crew that will turn their hard work and investment dollars into a great cinematic achievement.