Friday, January 29, 2016

BUDGETS Mid-budget movies missing from multiplex?

Another theme I've flagged up before; the disappearance of what used to be the dominant production model, the mid-budget movie, defined here as $10-50m, though I'd consider it more $20m and up for US productions.

There is another reason the barricades between “serious” and “popcorn” are coming down – the “squeezed middle”. In short, Hollywood movies have become either very cheap or very expensive. The middle ground – traditional habitat of awards-friendly drama – has all but disappeared. As Jason Bailey wrote in Flavorwire in 2014, that mid-budget range (roughly between $10m and $50m) was once filled by the likes of John Waters, David Lynch, Francis Ford Coppola, Spike Lee, Steven Soderbergh and countless others. Now Lee has to fund his films through Kickstarter, and Lynch and Soderbergh have quit movies in favour of television. Even Bay has noticed it. “The movie industry has really changed. The middle-[budget] movie is basically gone. They just want these big movies,” he complained to Rolling Stone, with no apparent trace of irony.

Why so serious? The directors ditching the daft for the dramatic

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