Once upon a time, if you used the term "big budget" to describe a movie, chances are the film cost around $100 million to make. But in recent years, the escalating cost of technology like CGI and 3-D has driven budgets through the moon, with films like "Avatar" and "Spider-Man 3" reportedly costing well over $250 million dollars. Big budget indeed.
So what do you call a movie with a $700 billion budget?
That's the question about to be answered by George Clooney, as Variety is reporting that the world's sexiest man is putting his producer hat back for a film about the federal bailout based on the Washington Post story "The $700 Billion Man." Eat your heart out, James Cameron.
So what is "The $700 Billion Man" about, exactly? Well, a couple years ago the economy collapsed due to massive shenanigans up on Wall Street, which in turn led to the U.S. government issuing a $700 billion bailout to the affected parties in an attempt to keep the entire world from falling into stone age chaos. Maybe you heard about it, it was kind of a big deal.
But you might not have heard about a dude named Neel Kashkari. Turns out that Kashkari, an employee in the Treasury Department, is the guy who actually came up with the whole bailout plan. And since the plan went into effect, Kashnari quit Washington entirely to live the life of a hermit in a tiny woodland cabin.
If that seems to be just the right combination of personal drama and political content that the guy behind "Good Night, and Good Luck" and "Syriana" would go for, then it turns out you're right, as Clooney is considering directing the story himself. And funding is being provided in part by Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban of all people, which seems a bit odd until you consider the alternative.
After all, just think what kind of movie Clooney could have made with $700 billion of your tax dollars.