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View Full Version : What does CGI in a film cost?


AnthonyThompson
06-29-2009, 11:57 PM
My question is how much does it CGI cost in a movie/ TV.

For example I’ve herd that a lower budget CGI TV show like Veggie Tales is around $1500 per minute. And a more expensive CGI TV Show like Jimmy Neutron might cost upwards of $2500 per minute to make, is that correct?

However, what does a big CGI movie cost a minute? I know that the First Transformers movie had a 150 million dollar budget. And the new Transformers Movie had a 300 million dollar budget and upwards of 5 different companies work on it including the French Mafia; it also had a total of 100,000 man hours put into the film.

But where’s cost break down for CGI verses real special effects/ pie-row techniques, how much does each company make / charge to do that. For example: what was the CGI budget on Rythem and Hue's Prince Caspian, or Happy Feet? How much did the company charge you were working for, if they would even tell you =)

These are just example questions: if anyone could shed more light on anouther movie that would be helpful.

Also I was wondering if any new any good books for pricing and ethics/contracting and the break down of CGI cost of movies. I would really apreshate it.

Thank you for your time.

cooperunionstud
06-30-2009, 12:13 AM
1500 per min? how about 1500 per second? lol... maybe 1500 per min if it was produced in india or something but still. even 1500 per second is cheap

Ilive
06-30-2009, 12:24 AM
You can get descent quality CGI at around 5,000-20,000 per minute of full CGI.

IT reallly depends on how you work the system and where you go to get it done. I mean if you are going to use people like ILM expect the highest quality but expect the highest price tag.

For descent quality you can do around 30 minutes for around 350,000-400,000.

IF you really get down and indie you can still get good quality but have to do a teamup type scenario.

AnthonyThompson
06-30-2009, 12:41 AM
I talked to someone that works at a CG studio in Mexico. He does SFX for commercials he informed me. For TV show, mid to low budget is around 2,500 per minute. Keep in mind there reusing characters per episode and sets... model etc.... I'm not saying he's right. I'm just stating were I got my facts. lol



Thanks for the quick feed back =)

mister3d
06-30-2009, 01:04 AM
It will depend on a scene complexity, the amount of workers and the deadline. And the quality you are after. You can't claim "1,500 per minute". It's not measured in time. I don't know how the recession affected USA, but even Ukraine making a 20 second crappy compositing of stills over shot material (low-budget tv ad) was 1000$. And there was almost no 3d, maybe just some boxes animation. This is not a movie cg by a long shot.

Darren Garrison
06-30-2009, 04:05 AM
Meanwhile, I believe this cost approx. $3.15 per minute:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r2c1ptxw3uU

AnthonyThompson
06-30-2009, 04:13 AM
What does that have to do with this discussion?

Darren Garrison
06-30-2009, 04:27 AM
Sorry, just my sense of humor. I tried to delete it, but there does't seem to be a way to.

malducin
06-30-2009, 04:35 AM
I talked to someone that works at a CG studio in Mexico. He does SFX for commercials he informed me. For TV show, mid to low budget is around 2,500 per minute. Keep in mind there reusing characters per episode and sets... model etc.... I'm not saying he's right. I'm just stating were I got my facts. lol

Well you also have to consider that labor costs are lower in Mexico and the exchange rate (right now around 13 pesos for a dollar). You can't extrapolate from that to costs of big Hollywood films.

Big blockbuster films have VFX budgets in the tens of millions of dollars.

alex.dass
06-30-2009, 09:31 AM
Meanwhile, I believe this cost approx. $3.15 per minute:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r2c1ptxw3uU

hahahaha! now thats funny!

DigitalNeutrinos
06-30-2009, 11:42 AM
There was a very detail explanation of this a while back in another thread which I believe
the figure was like $100 a second, do the math and that's very low for full animated film.
But CGI could mean lots of things.

mister3d
06-30-2009, 01:06 PM
There was a very detail explanation of this a while back in another thread which I believe
the figure was like $100 a second, do the math and that's very low for full animated film.
But CGI could mean lots of things.

Then transformers 2 vfx would cost 600,000 $, which is a bit wrong, and even if you take it ten times more, it won't be closer.

paulrus
06-30-2009, 01:13 PM
You're WAY off on the Veggie Tales numbers (way low on your estimate). I've spoken to the creator of the show about it before.

PG

Lone Deranger
06-30-2009, 02:10 PM
How long is a piece of string?

danlefeb
06-30-2009, 02:13 PM
So for $100 a second, I can choose between the quality of an animated cube and Transformers 2? Awesome!

leigh
06-30-2009, 02:16 PM
How long is a piece of string?

QTF.

This thread is pointless because no-one has this information, nor are you going to find any consistent pricing between vendors and projects.

Closed.