February 13, 2013
Using resources the box office data site The Numbers and inflation adjustments courtesy of Business Insider, we will present the most expensive movie budgets of all time. It should be noted that big Hollywood budgets can take on an air of mythic proportions, because the studios have responsibilities to their shareholders and need to present numbers that reflect wise usage of the hundreds of millions of dollars invested in a blockbuster. With that said, these production numbers are industry estimates, and it's not far-fetched to believe some may be grossly understated.
One such controversial budget number is that of James Cameron's groundbreaking 2009 smash, 'Avatar,' which officially clocks in at #10 with an estimated original budget of $237 million ($255.5 million with inflation). Cameron's epic could be anywhere from the #10 to #1 on the most expensive movies list. 'The New York Times' reported 'Avatar' to have cost as much as $500 million, while the general industry consensus is closer to $280 million before marketing expenditures. We'll give the film the benefit of the doubt with the $237 million Fox executives disclosed.