Slate: Why Do Animated Films Cost So Much to Make?

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  06 June 2013
Slate: Why Do Animated Films Cost So Much to Make?

I think this article is good for a laugh...
Quote:
"A good animation movie can take $50 million or more to produce. Animation is a highly labor-centric work. During my undergrad, some of our classmates worked on a three minute animation film for a college event. That took about two months for a team of eight people. Multiply the quality by 1000X and the size by 100X and you get a Pixar movie.

"
http://www.slate.com/blogs/quora/20...st_so_much.html
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  06 June 2013
Pretty funny alright. Lots of comedy gold in there, like this one in particular :

Quote: For the Sully character in Monsters, Inc., there were 2,320,413 individually named hairs on his body.


So one called Kevin... one called Tom.. one called..

No wonder it takes so long to make those movies, just the names of those hairs must have taken months to come up with.

Cheers,
Brian
 
  06 June 2013
Animation is labour intensive, but with the recent concern over studios going bust because they are not getting paid enough, would the cost of a big-name voice cast have some impact on budgets?

Take Madagascar; John DiMaggio is known for his work as a voice actor and probably(at a guess) would make a couple of thousand, however Ben Stiller is also a live action Hollywood star. Wouldn't he command at least a few million?
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  06 June 2013
Originally Posted by Horganovski: Pretty funny alright. Lots of comedy gold in there, like this one in particular :



So one called Kevin... one called Tom.. one called..

No wonder it takes so long to make those movies, just the names of those hairs must have taken months to come up with.

Cheers,
Brian


No, no - imagine if you could use that against clients...

"...come, come...do you have ANY idea just HOW many individual hairs there are on a SINGLE character? And they all have to animated individually...sigh...I can tell you are new at this..."

"But...we can just do a setup in Maya and have it all automa - OUCH!"

"Don't you have any manners Jeff? I'm talking to the honest customer here! Its rude to interrupt!"
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  06 June 2013
This is almost as dumb as that show a few years back that had a character that said something like "We can't get a better picture until we get another shipment of pixels" or something like that. And this was from "the computer lab/hacker guy" on one of those crime procedurals like CSI: Bakersfield, or whatever the show is called.
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  06 June 2013
What colour is your Ram? Red works best.
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  06 June 2013
Originally Posted by Artbot: This is almost as dumb as that show a few years back that had a character that said something like "We can't get a better picture until we get another shipment of pixels" or something like that. And this was from "the computer lab/hacker guy" on one of those crime procedurals like CSI: Bakersfield, or whatever the show is called.


We actually had a client request we do something with our audio and referenced CSI as an example of how it works. Can't you just do it like that episode of CSI... it can't possibly be that hard, etc...

No...No, we can't.
 
  06 June 2013
For the most part, the budgets are used up by animators to build & decorate their wacky work spaces. If the public ever finds out that animated movies are made by simply typing a premise into a text program then letting the computer figure it all out, we'll be doomed!
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  06 June 2013
You must be referring to that amazon storyboard application. Create the story, just add premise.
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  06 June 2013
Personally, while I'm an outsider, I think that's because 'budget' is now considered as passing contest, a measure of 'quality', and advertising bullet point.

And of course, actors.

http://www.comicbookmovie.com/fansi...E/news/?a=79494

http://www.theatlanticwire.com/ente...2-salary/66457/

Still rumors, and example given was film, but you get my point.

As for animation personally, shouldn't there be a point of diminishing return? Where adding another USD 100 million would not increase the quality much?

I mean, if a character have 1,000,000 fur is good enough, do not, i repeat, do not try to 'pissing contest' by adding one billion fur and spent 80 million on the render farm just to brag on the next volume of 3D World "you want to know about our character? That one have one billion fur, you got that, one billion fur! Booooooyaaaaaaahhhh!" and goes into history as the first cg character with one billion fur, and flopped, and destroy a studio and get hundreds laid off.

When I watch 3d animation these day, sometimes I made a mini games of 'what can be removed' and doesn't hurt the animation much?

Remember star war and the updated version where a lot of 3d extra characters were added? nobody care for the first time around and nobody cares for the second.

That's what I think about today 3d animation. Too much 'unnecessary thing' just because they think gigantic budget is advertising point and they just want to spend it.
 
  06 June 2013
And I have to add, I think 50 million is a good number. Why?


65 million.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astro_Boy_(film)

My opinion : Made me sad better than The Legend of the Guardians.


30 million

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appleseed_EX_Machina

edit:

I would love to add Final Fantasy : Advent Children, but there is no budget released. Considering there is no cinema release and were limited in their release too, it could be not too much.

Last edited by fablefox : 06 June 2013 at 02:57 AM.
 
  06 June 2013
I think this stuff is about to implode.
10 years from now you cannot have a budget of 500 million, recoup costs by charging 50 a ticket, causing ticket sales to drop 75%

Oh and newest Captain Harlock is 30 million.
Despicable Me 70 Million and that was great by US standards of cost.

Brave 185 Million! Wow! I mean is the Pixar movie that much better looking?
 
  06 June 2013
Originally Posted by earthboyjacobus: I think this stuff is about to implode.
10 years from now you cannot have a budget of 500 million, recoup costs by charging 50 a ticket, causing ticket sales to drop 75%

Oh and newest Captain Harlock is 30 million.
Despicable Me 70 Million and that was great by US standards of cost.

Brave 185 Million! Wow! I mean is the Pixar movie that much better looking?


Ah yes, Despicable Me. I almost forgot I didn't realize that it was sub 100 million when I'm looking at the 3d film list at wikipedia.

From wikipedia

Budget $69 million[1]
Box office $543,113,985[1]

This is how a good 3d animation is made. I think 3d animation max should be around 100 million. If after all consideration they exceeded that budget, I think they need to re-look.
 
  06 June 2013
Emerging complexity.
 
  06 June 2013
Originally Posted by earthboyjacobus:
Brave 185 Million! Wow! I mean is the Pixar movie that much better looking?


Can only assume Disney is so financially strong they can throw that kind of money behind their films...
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