Thursday, July 24, 2008

More Bang For Your Buck

Vince VaughnDid you know that Vince Vaughn gives the best return, dollar for dollar? That’s okay, neither did I.

According to a recent article by Forbes Magazine Vince Vaughn delivers the best bang for the movie studio’s buck, bringing in $14.73 of gross income for studios for every dollar he was paid. This has nothing to do with how great (or not) and actor he is. Rather, it’s due to his relatively low salary balanced by the surprise hits of modest budget movies like Wedding Crashers and The Breakup.

So who else is a good investment at the box office? Here are the top five:

  • Vince Vaughn - $14.73 (per dollar)
  • Toby Maguire - $13.44
  • Julia Roberts - $13.19
  • Brad Pitt - $12.73
  • Naomi Watts/Matt Damon (tied) - $12.16

    Kung Fu PandaThis got me thinking about how I choose to spend my money. When I decide to make the financial commitment of seeing a movie in the theater (I’m still amazed that the price of a matinee is $7.50) there are several factors that come into play, and one of them is trust. Can I depend on the actor, or studio, to deliver? For example, I have yet to be disappointed by Pixar, so I plan to see each of their new movies at the multi-plex. Their latest, WALL*E was wonderfully moving and entertaining. Money well spent. Another animated film that tickled me was Kung Fu Panda. When I first heard about it, I had my doubts. I mean, the title is pretty corny. But then I found out Jack Black voiced the titular panda. Okay, that got my attention. I enjoy Jack Black, but more importantly, I’ve come to trust that I know what to expect from a Jack Black performance. So off my son and I went to the theater where we laughed ourselves silly. Another great film.

    Of course there have been plenty times when my expectations were completely different than my movie-going experience. The most recent example of this is the film Wanted. This got my attention for a couple of reasons. First, I admire the acting chops of Morgan Freeman, James McAvoy and Angelina Jolie, all main characters. Second, the trailer was way cool. I thought here’s an action flick my hubby and I will both enjoy. Then we got to the theater. WAY different than either of us expected. In fact, we were about five minutes into the movie when my husband leaned over and said, “This is the longest trailer I’ve ever seen.” He didn’t even realize the movie had started! We did watch the whole thing, and there were some cool action sequences, but I felt let down by the whole experience. A few days later I found out it’s based on a comic book. That explained a lot.

    So how about you? Ever seen a movie or bought a book expecting one thing and getting something completely different? Are there certain actors who constantly deliver for you? Certain authors who you buy as soon as they have a new book out? Who gives you the most bang for your buck?


    windycindy said...

    I hardly ever go to the movies. We do rent them. I tend to enjoy Nicholas Cage in movies. I know a lot more about certain television shows than movies. I like so many authors, that I can't pinpoint on them. Thanks, Cindi

    Kelly said...

    I get nailed by books all the time - expecting a level of quality and then being happily/unhappily surprised. I'm a much better predictor of movies in that sense. Matt Damon has always delivered for me, even when the movie was purely awful (e.g. Dogma.)

    p.s. Happy Birthday Billy!