This morning, I decided to see how much Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” cost to produce. Box Office Mojo didn’t list its production costs, but with a modicum of searching I learned that the budget was probably around $250 million (most of which you can see on screen).
Now, my whining comes in after I read a story from Business Insider, a site I normally like quite a bit, which implies that Jackson’s film isn’t tracking on par with his ‘Rings’ films. The article also implies that all is gloom and door as far as the two sequels are concerned (‘The Hobbit’ is the first in a trilogy).
This is beyond nonsense. If only because it has already earned, worldwide, over $622 million dollars, and will probably be going strong well into the new year. Now keep in mind, we’re talking a production budget of only (!) $250 million, so I fully expect that it will earn at least $700 million (and I am probably being conservative) before its theater run ends.
And that’s not including profits from DVD sales, streaming deals, and venues like iTunes.
Though admittedly an important part of this equation is that the each of the ‘Lord Of The Rings’ films squeaked in for under $200 million, which means that for the costs of almost the ENTIRE first three films you get–almost–one ‘Hobbit.”
Looking at the finished product, I think that it’s a bargain. This latest film seems better assembled, more accomplished and significantly more fun than any of the prior three films.
And that has to count for something.