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$78 Million worth of Red Tape
April 16, 2007 5:38 PM   Subscribe

$78 Million worth of Red Tape. An amazing (and lengthy) LA Times article that provides an extremely rare glimpse into the finances of a major motion picture, with a line item dissection of the $160 Million disaster Sahara. The items include $230,000+ for bribes to local officials, $2 Million for a 45 second plane crash sequence cut from the final film, and 3.8 Million to a total of 10 different screenwriters for a movie that eventually went on to be one of the largest (in pure dollar terms - not adjusted for inflation) financial disasters in film making history.
posted by jonson (74 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
Awesome. Thanks.
posted by dobbs at 6:01 PM on April 16, 2007


Unfortunately, the article only appears lengthy (19 pages!) because many of the pages are badly flowed lists of figures. Either the L.A. Times needs a new CMS or a new web team.

What's especially interesting are two of the "gratuities" to Moroccan officials; one is listed as "Political/mayoral support" and another was paid to delay a sewage infrastructure project that would've interfered with shooting. Apparently both might be illegal under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Also fun to read are the product placement deals.
posted by chrominance at 6:02 PM on April 16, 2007


Interesting stuff. Fun movie too!
posted by brundlefly at 6:08 PM on April 16, 2007


Interesting. According to Rotten Tomatoes it took $68,642,452 at the box office, but then went on to take $53,200,000 in VHS Rentals (!?!).

Now, I've heard that foreign markets and rentals are where the moneys at, and that 'flops' like this and serenty actual make some money, ans people have spent almost as much renting it on VHS as they have watching it at the movies kind of hints at that, though presumably that isn't money going back to the studio and "VHS rentals" is a bit of a weird measure of post Box Office success. Is there anywhere we can see useful figures, like say DVD sales?
posted by Artw at 6:08 PM on April 16, 2007


Clint Mansell, who did the score, was paid more than the director. Fascinating.
posted by dobbs at 6:12 PM on April 16, 2007


I watched Doomsimply because I saw Clint Mansell did the soundtrack. That's money and time I won't be getting back.
posted by Artw at 6:17 PM on April 16, 2007


61$ million for advertising and I don't remember this movie in the slightest.

38% at rottentomatoes.com. Ouch. I wish rottentomatoes would give a bit of context to ratings. Is this Gigli bad or just Pauly Shore bad? Worse than Catwoman? How does it compare to the Clooney Batman or the one with Jim Carrey?
posted by stavrogin at 6:17 PM on April 16, 2007


Clint Mansell, who did the score, was paid more than the director. Fascinating.

As a Pop Will Eat Itself fan, I am fine with this.
posted by Sticherbeast at 6:18 PM on April 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


Its a pleasant enough diversion.
It's not offensively bad a la The Mummy or Underworld.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 6:19 PM on April 16, 2007


It's sort of campy James Bond fare with good action sequences. I was thoroughly entertained.
posted by fshgrl at 6:21 PM on April 16, 2007


I love Clint Mansell's work--my comment is more to my shock that they'd let an unknown director helm a $80M movie. The mind boggles.
posted by dobbs at 6:22 PM on April 16, 2007


dobbs writes "I love Clint Mansell's work--my comment is more to my shock that they'd let an unknown director helm a $80M movie. The mind boggles."

That would be because the director is Michael Eisner's son.
posted by brundlefly at 6:24 PM on April 16, 2007


He'll never assuredly work in this town again!
posted by Artw at 6:28 PM on April 16, 2007


Bbbbu... bu bu bu but that's nepotism.

!
posted by dobbs at 6:30 PM on April 16, 2007


Eisner also suggested eliminating a bar scene featuring tequila because "it doesn't really work anymore." Baldwin again balked: "Need the tequila and beer scenes at some point as it means a lot of dollars (2 million from Souza and 3 from Heineken)."

Oh dear me.
posted by Sticherbeast at 6:34 PM on April 16, 2007


I LOVE the stuff about the paid placements & how they alter the film's content, like Sticherbeast's Souza & Heineken reference, or the thing about how the Jeep "couldn't get stuck in the mud" during a chase because Jeep was paying good money for the promotion!
posted by jonson at 6:38 PM on April 16, 2007


"that 'flops' like this and serenty"

Serenity was a flop? What self respecting geek doesn't own a copy of Serenity and the Firefly box set? :D
posted by drstein at 6:39 PM on April 16, 2007


I don't know why reading this kind of thing so often stings my sensibilities. I am a firm believer in capitalism, for instance; if the demand is enough that people will pay a ridiculous price, I can't fault the system. Extract what you can. But when I read about $2mil for scenes that are scrapped, I can't help but think of people, people I even know, who could use that money to pay for things like medical bills. Not to mention all the billions of other needy people I don't know.

But like I say, I don't know why this affects me. If a studio can do it, I support their doing it. I loves me some movies.
posted by iguanapolitico at 6:41 PM on April 16, 2007


drstein: there just aren't enough self respecting geeks. Even with all of us owning the DVDs, they were still flops. :)
posted by iguanapolitico at 6:42 PM on April 16, 2007


drstein - accepted wisdom seemed to be that Serenity underperformed.

I'm hearting similar things about Gerindhouse (hence threats of splitting it for the European release), which seems inconceivable to me. Still, they must have blown a shitload of money on advertising.
posted by Artw at 6:45 PM on April 16, 2007


Sahara isn't going to make its money back. The budget already accounts for rentals and home video sales.

As for Serenity, I think the last numbers I read suggested that even if DVD sales and rentals equalled the domestic box office take, the movie could still be short of breaking even. A lot of foreign launches were cancelled in the wake of Serenity's less than stellar North American performance as well, which obviously cuts into foreign box office.

And yes, Serenity was a flop. I liked the movie too, but y'all need to step out of your echo chambers and face facts.
posted by chrominance at 6:47 PM on April 16, 2007


Oh, and on post-post: Grindhouse was always going to be split for foreign audiences. The new development is that the movie may end up being split and re-released in North America as well, if you believe this LA Weekly "exclusive." At a two-week take of (wait for it) $19.7 million, it wouldn't surprise me one bit.
posted by chrominance at 6:50 PM on April 16, 2007


I LOVE the stuff about the paid placements & how they alter the film's content, like Sticherbeast's Souza & Heineken reference, or the thing about how the Jeep "couldn't get stuck in the mud" during a chase because Jeep was paying good money for the promotion!

I had a professor in film school talk about some of this. It's amazing how many contracts and forms you have to sign for the use of, for example, a can of Coke in a movie versus the contract for the actual production staff and cast.

I was an animation major and one of my favorite stories was the contract sessions Disney had with Warner Bros. to use the Looney Tunes in Who Framed Roger Rabbit. After intense negotiations, WB allowed the use of their properties under the guidelines that Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny would share the exact same amount of screen time. Sure enough, not only do Bugs and Mickey share almost the exact same number of frames of animation in the movie (aided by appearing in a scene together for the most part), they say the exact same number of words of dialogue.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:59 PM on April 16, 2007


chrominance - youch. And this is just down to length? Because there are many, many movies that are way too long these days.
posted by Artw at 7:07 PM on April 16, 2007


You know, they filmed it in Morocco, so I'm not surprised at the bribery tax. The two that chrominence brought up are pretty normal, and then you have to add all the little things...like when police will stop a car with movie stickers in the window and make up some bogus charge. The Moroccan drivers know that they could go to court and fight the ticket, but they also know that the cop will take all all their papers in the interim (license, tourist permit, car registration), effectively nullifying their ability to work. They just slip the cop 100 dh in a newspaper (about $8), and off they go.
posted by Liosliath at 7:45 PM on April 16, 2007


But when I read about $2mil for scenes that are scrapped, I can't help but think of people, people I even know, who could use that money to pay for things like medical bills. Not to mention all the billions of other needy people I don't know.

But see, if any of those people happened to be in the business of staging fake plane crash sequences for movies, they would have earned a piece of that $2 mil. The producers didn't just set all that money on fire -- they paid a bunch of people to do the work. Carpenters, painters, electricians, engineers, designers, make-up artists, and so on. Those people were probably pretty happy to get a check, and some of them might have even used the money to pay things like medical bills. It isn't like the producers would have suddenly dropped $2 mil into the nearest Salvation Army kettle had they elected to not film the scene. The money just wouldn't have been spent, and then all those people wouldn't have had the work and wouldn't have been paid.
posted by spilon at 7:50 PM on April 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


People, people... If the movie doesn't lose money on paper, the producers can't stiff everyone out of their percentage points of the profit.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:21 PM on April 16, 2007


God, that article's been formatted by morons. And I can't help wonder about the appropriateness (or legality) of publishing "confidential" exhibits from a jury trial. Isn't there supposed to be some compelling public interest for that?

As for Serenity, I think the last numbers I read suggested that even if DVD sales and rentals equalled the domestic box office take, the movie could still be short of breaking even.

If the DVD revenue ever reaches $39 million, I'm sure it'll have broken even. Most of what I read over a year ago implied it was close to breaking even back then, with around $9M in DVD sales, and assuming a $10M marketing budget on top of production and a 55% cut of the box office take for the studio. I'll bet it's more than paid for itself by now, even if it clearly didn't match what Whedon hoped it would do, by a long shot.
posted by mediareport at 8:26 PM on April 16, 2007


Well, paint me silly. I thought that I read Serenity made its budget back and then some.

Probably some other "S" movie that I was thinking of.

Whoops!
posted by drstein at 8:28 PM on April 16, 2007


I wasn't as shocked by the product placement as I was by the casting of Cruz for under $2M, which gained the production $20M in EU incentives. A bargain.
posted by dhartung at 8:41 PM on April 16, 2007


That would be because the director is Michael Eisner's son.

And I was his waiter at his prom dinner. And I refused to serve him alcohol. Good times.

True story.

I was working at Disneyland's Club 33 in 1988 when Breck Eisner and his prom date showed up with three other couples. The punk sits down and starts ordering thousand-dollar bottles of champagne.

"Excellent choice, sir." I leaned in close so I wouldn't embarrass him too much. "I'm going to need to see some I.D."

Despite it being an exclusive, private club ... and despite this being the CEO's son ... with the CEO coming in monthly for high-level functions ... it's still a restaurant. What if this kid plows over a family of nine before wrapping Dad's Ferrari around a tree on the way home?

"Do you know who I am?" Little Eisner says.

"Actually, I do."

"Can you help me out here?"

"Nope, sorry."

I think he had Sprite. I garnished it with a cherry.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:42 PM on April 16, 2007 [29 favorites]


Wow, I had no idea Sahara was such a flop. I rented it on a whim and thought it was a pretty entertaining Indiana Jones type of adventure.
posted by lubujackson at 8:42 PM on April 16, 2007


And yes, Serenity was a flop. I liked the movie too, but y'all need to step out of your echo chambers and face facts.

Hmm?

I'd heard that it had a budget of about $40 million, and took in about $38 or $39 million (if you combine foreign and domestic, domestic making up the lion's share).

My understanding's been that it underperformed, but not so badly as to fall into the "flop" category, where there's no hope of the studio making its money back.
posted by sparkletone at 9:23 PM on April 16, 2007


Wow, I had no idea Sahara was such a flop. I rented it on a whim and thought it was a pretty entertaining Indiana Jones type of adventure.

Same. And it had that one guy from That Thing You Do! - "you're talking gibberish!". I think that about made up for any floppy-ness.
posted by niles at 9:41 PM on April 16, 2007


"Anschutz said in a deposition that he never set a limit on production costs but became "concerned" as they climbed to $160 million."

Never set a limit on production costs? And they were suprised when it went over budget?

I wonder if they add up all the 'bribes' and travel costs whether it was still worth filming in Morocco, instead of just driving out to Death Valley.

I laughed about not allowing a Jeep to be shown being stuck in the mud. I remember always seeing cell phone product placements on X-Files (I think they were Nokia). But the phones often wouldn't work! I guess Nokia doesn't mind if aliens transmissions are blocking their phones. Or the director just didn't care.
posted by eye of newt at 10:25 PM on April 16, 2007


I remember always seeing cell phone product placements on X-Files (I think they were Nokia). But the phones often wouldn't work!

That's funny... I always remember the cellphones on X-Files as being notoriously miraculous, in that they'd work anywhere in the country, and the only time they everwouldn't is when they needed to separate the characters for suspense reasons (and that didn't happen that often).

The show I remember giving the characters cellphones and then specifically mocking how useless they were is Buffy and Angel, where the titular characters got them, and then the only time anyone tried to call them, they were underground and reception was bad and the call got dropped.
posted by sparkletone at 11:33 PM on April 16, 2007


If the DVD revenue ever reaches $39 million, I'm sure it'll have broken even. Most of what I read over a year ago implied it was close to breaking even back then, with around $9M in DVD sales, and assuming a $10M marketing budget on top of production and a 55% cut of the box office take for the studio. I'll bet it's more than paid for itself by now, even if it clearly didn't match what Whedon hoped it would do, by a long shot.

Serenity @ Boxofficemojo, where I remember the Whedonesque crew were keeping tabs on the weekend box office. The only DVD sales figures I can find say roughly $10 million in sales after a month in release.

Assume 55% for the studio; that's just over $20 million. Assume the DVD has made a total of $20 million in revenue, twice that of the first month. (This is either low or high, depending on how rabidly you think fans will try to convert other people. Let's note that the idea of fans having to "convert" people is a good sign that marketing didn't do its job earlier.)

Even if the percentage is much higher than box office (and it probably is, since most of the fixed costs have probably been paid already and DVD promotion has been next to nil), it's still unclear whether the movie's made enough net revenue to clear the $40 million budget. It's only once you add in the domestic rentals and tack on the projected 60% extra for lifetime revenue that you can say with some confidence that yes, Serenity paid for itself!

At this point, a concession: yes, okay, maybe Serenity wasn't a flop. Anything that manages to pay for itself probably doesn't deserve the title of "complete failure." But at this point it's all quibbling over semantics; Firefly is a dead franchise, unless someone pulls a Battlestar Galactica twenty years from now.

Anyways, to pull this slightly back towards the original topic, I'd love to see this sort of line item accounting for a bunch of movies. First up: Cutthroat Island.
posted by chrominance at 12:17 AM on April 17, 2007


yes, okay, maybe Serenity wasn't a flop. Anything that manages to pay for itself probably doesn't deserve the title of "complete failure."

That's all 'm saying.

And I agree with the stuff after what I've quoted. I'm not one of the fans who still hopes for more, or has a burning desire for more.

Like Whedon seems to, and I feel pretty satisified by what I've got. Joss has said several times in interviews that after the show's cancellation he had an unbelievable drive to 'get some closure' or some such by doing a movie, and after accomplishing the task of actually getting a pretty damn awesome Firefly movie made, he just doesn't have that drive anymore. I totally understand.

Not that I'd, you know, be unhappy if some incredible miracle fell from the sky and resulted in more TV episodes, or movies.
posted by sparkletone at 12:56 AM on April 17, 2007


And, yeah. There's a bunch of movies I'd like to see this sort of thing for.

I'd like to see it for some of the big, old historical epics. Ben-hur and Ten Commandments and shit. I can think of a bunch of more recent films I'd love to see it on too.
posted by sparkletone at 12:59 AM on April 17, 2007


In the book version of Jurassic Park the cars were Toyota Land cruisers, but in the film they were Ford Explorers. Perhaps Toyota didn't want people thinking that their cars were dinosaur-crushable?
posted by Poagao at 1:33 AM on April 17, 2007


Holy crap, Rainn Wilson needs a better agent. Maybe he should hire whoever represents Key Grip Gary Hutchings?
posted by robocop is bleeding at 6:22 AM on April 17, 2007


38% at rottentomatoes.com. Ouch. I wish rottentomatoes would give a bit of context to ratings. Is this Gigli bad or just Pauly Shore bad? Worse than Catwoman? How does it compare to the Clooney Batman or the one with Jim Carrey?

I don't know why everybody always refers to Rotten Tomatoes for a snapshot of critical consensus. The numbers at Metacritic are far more useful. RT simply gives you the percentage who give a movie "thumbs up", but there's no sense of whether any given critic thought it was just passable or Oscar-worthy. Metacritic assigns a score out of 100 points to each review, then averages. Of course, for the purposes of my argument, I wish Sahara had ended up with something more dramatically different than a 41, but I think that's a pretty accurate gauge of the reaction to the movie.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:36 AM on April 17, 2007


I read a book, whose exact title escapes me, called something like The Greatest Ten Sci-Fi Movies Never Made. Reading it really opened my eyes to how weird Hollywood accounting is. Just the backstory on the last Superman flick ... The obligatory Travis McGee quote:

"Darling! This is the Industry! The really creative people are the accountants. A big studio got over half the profit, after setting breakeven at about three times the cost, taking twenty-five percent of income as an overhead charge, and taking thirty percent of income as a distribution charge, plus rental fees, and prime interest on what they advanced."

Yeah, I'd love to know the figures on Serenity, myself.
posted by adipocere at 6:58 AM on April 17, 2007


Check the link I posted above, adipocere; those are the best numbers I've found. It's not easy to find cumulative DVD sales numbers for a particular flick, particularly long after it's come out.
posted by mediareport at 7:42 AM on April 17, 2007


I think Serenity flopped because Serenity was the kind of shit only nerds can get into. Like Buffy and the entire Whendon output, I tried to give it a chance but couldn't stand the "hip self-awareness" and poorly executed, unconvincing sequences of tiny women "kicking ass."
posted by autodidact at 7:44 AM on April 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


How do you spend $102,884 on walkie-talkies? Do the suppliers simply triple their prices when selling to movie productions?
posted by Lord Kinbote at 7:57 AM on April 17, 2007


Serenity was made far too much for Firefly fans. I plugged it in and watched 15 minutes of characters I didn't know giving meaningful, poignant looks to other characters I didn't know. Then I unplugged it again.
posted by Trochanter at 8:14 AM on April 17, 2007


Great post! I liked this quote regarding their not receiving a "no animals were harmed" note at the end of the movie:
"...producers of the $160-million movie opted not to pay a $30 hourly rate plus travel and other expenses."
posted by ObscureReferenceMan at 9:03 AM on April 17, 2007


I garnished it with a cherry.
...and that's how Papa Bell became Cool Papa Bell.
posted by Floydd at 9:29 AM on April 17, 2007


Floydd, yeah seriously....

Did I ever tell you guys about the time I punched God in the face? I'm so awesome.
posted by nathancaswell at 9:36 AM on April 17, 2007


I'd always supposed that the reasons studios continue to back flops is because they make money on the production. It's the investors in the picture that lose their shirts. Sure, they'd rather have a hit, but they'll take a turkey if they have to and show every sign of pain as the production company buys everything from them at a markup that would make your eyes bleed. Correct me if I'm wrong.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:43 AM on April 17, 2007


Despite efforts to contain expenses by filming abroad, "Sahara's" production costs quickly soared from an initial budget of $80 million to more than $100 million largely because of myriad problems locking in a script.

Aaaaaaaaand there's the problem. If you have a good script writer, you don't have a problem locking in a script. Unless, of course, you let the fucking producers and marketers start calling shots on the script left and right and enter development hell. No one can be so consistently counted on to come up with a bad idea for a script or editing decision as a producer. No one can be so consistently counted on to never come up with a good idea for a script or editing decision as a producer. Except maybe a marketer.

Let's not forget, either, that they are now being sued for denying cussler his contractually obligated final say on a script.
posted by shmegegge at 9:52 AM on April 17, 2007


shmegegge writes "If you have a good script writer, you don't have a problem locking in a script. Unless, of course, you let the fucking producers and marketers start calling shots on the script left and right and enter development hell."

Bingo. SEE ALSO: Waterworld. That was continually being rewritten during production.
posted by brundlefly at 9:58 AM on April 17, 2007


also, Dirk Pitt is the worst name for anybody ever.
posted by shmegegge at 10:00 AM on April 17, 2007


shmegegge: from the absolute failure of the movie, you'd almost have to reason that nobody read the books and saw them as the dismal failures of literature that they are. I mean, Clive Cussler, people?
posted by avriette at 10:50 AM on April 17, 2007


And by worst, you mean BEST, right shmegegge? I love those books. They're so utterly ridiculous that they approach brilliance.

In one of them, Inca Gold I think, one of the female characters is described as having "an hourglass figure, with an extra twenty minutes added for good measure."

I've always wondered how those 20 mins are distributed.
posted by brundlefly at 11:13 AM on April 17, 2007


I saw Serenity in the theater and I really enjoyed it.
I had no experience with the show or any of the other baggage.
Really creative, interesting ideas.
It did seem a bit "TV" but I think it overcame those limitations pretty handily.

My only complaint is that I think Nathan Fillion is a complete mis-cast for the lead. Kept sucking me right back out of the story.
He doesn't seem to be inside his character all that much and you get the feeling that hes playing out of his depth. Not a bad actor really, just not right for the character I think.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 11:23 AM on April 17, 2007


My only complaint is that I think Nathan Fillion is a complete mis-cast for the lead.

Senor Cardgage, if I knew how to swear in Chinese, I would be doing so now.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 11:36 AM on April 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


robocop is bleeding: Holy crap, Rainn Wilson needs a better agent. Maybe he should hire whoever represents Key Grip Gary Hutchings?
Heh- yeah no doubt (although methinks Rainn made quite a bit more than $45k for his "Last Mimzy" appearance, and is probably banking millions for "The Office"), one of the actors making half of the pay of the key grip? Key grip's an important job, but still...

I can't help but be reminded of those maudlin in-theater commercials from the RIAA to discourage piracy by having some behind- the- scenes blue collar type talk about how they depend on movies to support themselves, and they aren't some big money star making millions so please don't steal movies! Clearly, they didn't want us to think of key grip Gary Hutchings, costume designer Anna Sheppard, or makeup artist Aileen Seaton!

I'm actually more inspired to go steal movies now, so that these pampered divas aren't making more than I am for holding a dang microphone up. Boom operator Paul Monroe can work two movies a year, banking $130K, and still have 14 weeks of vacation to sit around and count his money. That bastard!!!
posted by hincandenza at 11:36 AM on April 17, 2007


rights to purchase wardrobe items at 50% off.

That's interesting on multiple levels. One, I'd never thought about the ability to get the wardrobe you wear in a film. Two, it's pretty cool that you can get it. Especially if you're in some period piece. Three, I'm surprised they charge for it.
posted by Bugbread at 11:36 AM on April 17, 2007


Senor Cardgage, if I knew how to swear in Chinese, I would be doing so now.

Well, I dont know Chinese, so feel free to just make some shit up. I wont be able to tell.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 11:45 AM on April 17, 2007


JEN SHOO DOH!!
posted by jonson at 11:55 AM on April 17, 2007


大象爆炸式的拉肚子・大象爆炸式的拉肚子
posted by brundlefly at 1:06 PM on April 17, 2007


Big elephant explosion ripapart style kidnapping stomach child!!

(Yeah, Japanese is real useful in understanding Chinese)
posted by Bugbread at 1:17 PM on April 17, 2007


Look dammit. I liked the flick and will probably check out the boxeed set.

Fillion isnt a dealbreaker, obviously, but man a different actor could have made that part sing

Oh and while Im all for the pretend-curse-slang-of-the-future, it often came out of the actors sounding stitled and false.

But its a great concept and story, pehaps overstuffed with ideas even. And Summer Glau is like the hottest thing ever.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 1:37 PM on April 17, 2007


Don't be mad at ME, Cardgage, I was just sneezing.
posted by jonson at 2:11 PM on April 17, 2007


Ching chong ching chong ching!

(c) R. O'Donnel
posted by Artw at 4:43 PM on April 17, 2007


Does anyone else now want to see Sahara out of morbid curiosity?
"So that's what 3.4 million dollars of expert script writing gets you."
posted by clockworkjoe at 11:13 PM on April 17, 2007


"Exploding-elephant-style diarrhea"? That's the best Chinese swearing you can do?

What I remember from Firefly is just bad swearing and lots of goushi (狗屎).
posted by Poagao at 1:20 AM on April 18, 2007


Not the best, but the coolest.
posted by brundlefly at 1:59 AM on April 18, 2007


Ah, well, if I could go back in time, I'd definitely go for the position of Chinese pronunciation coach for Firefly. From the sound of it, they could have used some help.
posted by Poagao at 2:16 AM on April 18, 2007


Well, I wouldn't expect the characters to speak "the Queen's" Chinese. They were speaking a patois of Chinese and English, hundreds of years in the future, with much much more emphasis on English of course. I'm not saying it was an intentional corruption of Chinese pronunciation for effect, but I wouldn't worry too much about accuracy in this case.
posted by brundlefly at 11:29 AM on April 18, 2007


On the technical compensation: Don't forget those costs probably included living out and travel expenses.
posted by Mitheral at 12:09 PM on April 18, 2007


Wow. Looking back, I really over-thought that last comment. No beans as an excuse.
posted by brundlefly at 11:21 PM on May 1, 2007


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