KCRW’s Kim Masters interviewed Battleship director Peter Berg on why his $200+ million film isn’t doing so well. During his explanation he mentions how expensive tentpole films are.
And the reason for this expense? Visual Effects! Check out the audio around 14:00:
Berg: $200 million dollars is the going rate for these films. That’s what they cost.
Masters: if not 3 ($300 million).
Berg: Yeah I mean thats a reasonable number.
Masters: Shocking though it is, yes.
Berg: But the money is all going to… the business to be in is ILM. That’s whose making all the money..
Masters: The effects houses.
Berg: Yeah in particualr ILM. I mean and they do great work but its what these films cost because you’ve got these giant visual effects components and they dictate the prices on them.
So all you VFX facilities take note!