The 10 Most Expensive Movie Sets Ever Created


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Production of movement footage just isn’t for the faint of heart or the impoverished. After all, breaking box workplace information does not come low cost. Usually, individuals concentrate on the million-dollar special effects and A-list stars, but one of the expensive and crucial parts of putting a movie in the cinema is the set. While some of them may be as simple as a primary room, a number of have gone utterly off the rails. Here are the top 10 costliest movie units ever created.


10 The General (1926) – $0.5 Million

Buster Keaton, famous for his silent film mugging, doesn’t appear to be the kind of one that could be responsible for what is likely some of the expensive film sets ever made. The set, which included an ancient prepare exploding on a real bridge, value $42,000 in 1926, which is equal to virtually $500,000 in current foreign money.

9 The Matrix Reloaded (2003) – $4 Million

For a movie collection that pushed the boundaries of what audiences had come to anticipate from digital effects, the Wachowski twins’ finances for their blockbuster Matrix trilogy was surprisingly modest. Matrix Reloaded’s pursuit scene was filmed on a motorway constructed with $1.5 million of the film’s multimillion-dollar finances. A mile-and-a-half-long road was constructed over an outdated runway at a former navy submit, full with an exit ramp and 19-foot concrete partitions.


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8 Stalingrad (2013) – $4 Million

To recreate the horrors of Stalingrad throughout World War II, while others would have used a green screen and visible results, the Russian director Fedor Bondarchuk determined to construct his set from scratch. The outcome was a meticulously correct copy of the war-ravaged metropolis. It cost $4 million and required 400 laborers over six months to construct. The movie’s breathtaking sights have been like catnip for critics, who devoured the rich settings.

7 It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) – $5.5 Million

You are acquainted with the tale of angels, bells, and Zuzu’s petals. But did you realize that this cherished vacation movie also boasts some of the costly movie sets in history? This huge four-acre set featured a replica of Bedford Falls, full with a three-block main road, 75 shops, and buildings — including a functioning bank — and more than 20 fully grown oak timber. They definitely would have been better off with an actual city, however they wanted the power to govern the snow. And this implies synthetic snow, because the temperature on these filming days in Encino, California exceeded 90 levels.

6 Intolerance (1916) – $7 Million

Griffith is well remembered for the racial caricatures in his 1915 movie Birth of a Nation, but he additionally pioneered costly sets. For his 1916 epic Intolerance, he constructed a 300-foot-tall duplicate of the Great Wall of Babylon, a mammoth construction that occupied more than 4 city blocks. The complete film is out there free of charge on YouTube.

5 Ben-Hur (1959) – $14 Million

Ben Hur is undeniably a masterwork due to its superb performances, superb script, and progressive cinematography. However, perhaps extra astonishing than these options was its immense size. More than 400 pounds of human hair have been utilized to create artificial beards, along with 10,000 extras and 100 wardrobe technicians. All of these, however, pale compared to the movie’s 300 sets, which spanned 148 acres and nine sound levels. They had been the most costly and largest sets ever constructed, requiring a million kilos of plaster, 40,000 cubic feet of wood, and an army of carpenters and artists.


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4 Titanic (1997) – $30 Million

James Cameron is no stranger to big-budget movies, but even by his own exaggerated requirements, the sheer dimension of the sets erected for his 1997 blockbuster is astounding. Inflation-adjusted, the Titanic set price a surprising $30 million, most of which went in direction of the fabrication of a 90% scale model of the doomed ship, which was contained in a 17-million gallon tank that price $40 million. In the end, the movie’s finances of $200 million was larger than the cost of the actual ship.

3 Cleopatra (1963) – $44 Million

Cleopatra stays one of the costly movies ever made, after adjusting for inflation. In fact, the film’s $44 million gross — roughly equivalent to $340 million in present currency — nearly bankrupted Fox, the company that held the production’s purse strings. The lavish sets had been one of the largest money traps; actually, full backdrops had been constructed however never used as a result of the challenge was relocated from London to Rome in the midst of filming. For this picture, 79 units had been developed in all. They have been profitable.

2 Waterworld (1995) – $75 Million

Waterworld, arguably one of the most notorious flops in cinematic historical past, almost wrecked Kevin Costner’s career along with director Kevin Reynolds’ reputation. Prior to the invention of the inexperienced screen, the movie’s aquatic sets had been a logistical nightmare, inflicting the crew to expend a multimillion-dollar budget in a matter of months. Off the coast of Hawaii, a massive 1,000-ton floating atoll caused essentially the most damage. This specially constructed island had a quarter-mile radius and consumed all of the available metal on the Hawaiian islands, prompting producers to import extra from California! Approximately $75 million above finances, primarily because of set expenses. If one adds this to whatever was within the preliminary budget, it will likely exceed $100 million.

1 The Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001 – 2003) – $281 Million

It’s wonderful that the Lord of the Rings films still sets the bar so so high for fantasy all these years on, and has solely aged higher. Not a single fantasy/sci-fi movie or sequence has been higher than that trilogy since. Can’t wait to rewatch it subsequent week.

— Milo (@Milo_AFC) May 3, 2021

The sets for Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy, arguably probably the most bold movie series ever filmed, had been as dear as one may anticipate. The cost of recreating places corresponding to Hobbiton and Helm’s Deep was $281 million. However, the New Zealand Army volunteered for $20 per day. Even though filming has long since concluded, the sets remain vacationer sights.


READ NEXT: The 8 Highest-Grossing Russo Brothers’ Movies, Ranked


Sources: Looper, Hello Travel, Thrillist


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