After Vanity Fair Claimed ‘The Marvels’ Clocked In With A $130 Million Budget, Forbes Now Shares The Movie’s Budget Is An Enormous $274 Million
The narrative about The Marvels’ production budget quickly changed as soon as it began.
Vanity Fair originally reported that the film’s production budget clocked in at $130 million in their most recent expose about the film’s director, Nia DaCosta. However, Vanity Fair has since updated their article and removed any mentioned of the movie’s production budget.
Nevertheless, an archive exists showing that it indeed reported, “DaCosta is still grappling DaCosta is also still grappling with the breakthroughs she’s made, including the fact that, at $130 million, The Marvels is the highest-budgeted film ever helmed by a Black woman.”
Given this reported budget, the success of the original Captain Marvel was called into question. Matt McGloin of Cosmic Book News wrote on X, “so a sequel to a billion dollar movie gets the lowest budget? doesn’t add up.”
Over at We Got This Covered Danny Peterson speculated the lower budget meant the movie is “on a smaller scale and thus doesn’t need as large of a budget.” He also claimed that the small budget could have been because Jude Law and Annette Bening were not returning for this film.
Finally, he offered that the film is set in the present so “there’s no need to use expensive CGI to digitally de-age Samuel L. Jackson.”
Financial analyst Valliant Renegade even called the $130 million budget into question believing it was based off an earlier report from Forbes in April that claimed the budget was $130 million after just two months of filming.
He stated, “The reality is that Disney spent for pre-production and the first roughly 60 days of principal photography for The Marvels $130 million according to the financial returns reported by Caroline Reed, who we frequently cite here on Valliant Renegade.”
“That means that this $130 million is probably less than half of the final spend on the film. And, of course, that’s if they actually shot the film all the way through one time and were happy with it. But as is the case with Marvel Cinematic Universe films there were tons and tons of massive reshoots for this film. I promise you the final spend for The Marvels is going to be at or very near $300 million if not more,” he said.
This is something that Vanity Fair should have caught given Reid made it abundantly clear in her report from April that “Disney also expects that the budgeted production costs ‘will increase significantly due to ongoing obligations and costs required to implement safety measures and social distancing in line with government guidance.'”
Valliant Renegade would also be quickly vindicated as Forbes’ Caroline Reid dropped a new report claiming the budget is actually upwards of $274 million.
This latest report from Forbes states, “The blockbuster budget is disclosed in company filings released yesterday by the Disney subsidiary which made the movie. They show that over the two-year period from the incorporation of the company to September 30, 2022, it spent $274.8 million (£221.8 million) and banked a $55 million (£44.4 million) subsidy from the government of the United Kingdom where the movie was made. This brought its net spending down to $219.8 million.”
However, it’s likely this is not even the final production budget as the production company incorporated in the United Kingdom will likely continue to report its financial dealings for a number of years to come as we’ve seen with Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, Avengers: Endgame, and other Disney productions filmed in the United Kingdom.
Nevertheless, Reid claims The Marvels will need to gross at least $439.6 million just to break even. However, this is an extremely conservative prediction using a 2x factor based on the net budget. Usually conservative predictions use a 2.5x factor which would mean the film needs to hit $549.5 million if you use the net budget that factors in the tax subsidy.
Some analysts even use a 3x factor. If you go with that standard the film would need to gross around $659.4 million to break even.
Even on Reid’s extremely conservative prediction that would mean the film has to gross around Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, a film that was marketed as featuring the next big bad of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Kang the Conqueror.
The film petered out at $463.6 million at the global box office.
What do you make of this new report that claims The Marvels‘ production budget is upwards of $270 million?