Four Incredible Shows With Jaw-Dropping Production Budgets!
Some shows go above and beyond to make sure that they’re providing value to their viewers, and we’re extremely grateful to the producers who go the extra mile for fans of their shows. While movies tend to have higher budgets, that’s not to say that television shows come in cheap, especially when they get to their final seasons. Some of them have had enormous budgets in the past, although it’s much safer to have a larger budget for a show than a movie since the viewership is already guaranteed, unlike for the big screen which might be a big flop at the box office without warning.
What’s more – when shows incorporate more CGI into every succeeding episode, they tend to become increasingly expensive. We’re not complaining, of course, because we’re willing to pay for the subscription to watch these phenomenal shows. For your curiosity, we have gathered in this list five beloved shows which have astounding per-episode production budgets that will leave you surprised!
Game of Thrones — $15 Million
Game of Thrones is arguably one of the most expensive shows ever created. It also happens to be one of the more recent ones, with the final episode released on May 19, 2019, so it’s still fresh in everyone’s minds. Every episode of the final season cost $15 million which is absolutely mind-blowing. However, given the amount of high-quality CGI that was used to make each episode (Dany’s dragons alone were impressive!), we’re not too surprised. HBO and the show’s producers did everything they could to make the show perfect, and while the ending seems to have left loyal fans divided, it’s undeniable that the show will be regarded as one of the best in history for many years to come.
Friends — $10 Million
At first glance, it might seem like Friends is less expensive than Game of Thrones, and while that might be true, you need to consider that Friends had a much smaller cast which mainly consisted of six main characters. Most of the shooting was done in an ordinary Manhattan apartment, while Game of Thrones had to be filmed over multiple locations around the world which included multiple castles, not to mention that they had a huge number of main characters that all needed special costumes. Finally, while Game of Thrones had only six episodes in the final season, Friends had a whopping 18 episodes which gives us perspective as to how much Friends cost to produce. Each member of the main cast was making $1 million an episode throughout the final season.
Rome — $9 Million
This show was so expensive that it became unsustainable and had to be canceled after two seasons. However, the discontinuation of this masterpiece wasn’t a complete failure as the lessons that HBO and the producers learned from it were what made popular shows like Game of Thrones possible. In fact, it’s arguable that Netflix launched the popular show Marco Polo due to Rome as well. Despite its cancellation, the show’s two seasons are a pleasure to watch, and knowing how much each episode cost to make will make you appreciate it even more.
Sense8 — $9 Million
Like Rome, Sense8 was another masterpiece that ended too soon due to budgetary issues. A whopping $9 million per episode was far too much for a show that not many people knew about. To fans of the show, Sense8 could have gone down in history as one of the greatest shows ever produced, but its sudden cancellation after two seasons (like Rome) prevented that from ever happening. A good portion of the costs for this show came from the producers’ insistence that every location they had in the show was used on site which meant incurring huge bills in terms of permits for the process. Since they needed a total of nine permits, the costs became more than what was profitable, and thus, the show could not continue.
We’re hoping that expensive shows will continue to be a thing in the future as they generally bring the wow factor to the small screen. While good writing and excellent directing can’t be replaced with a huge budget, shows that have more money poured into them are usually expected to be much better. Of course, it’s always upsetting when a show has to end prematurely due to budget constraints, but what more can we, the audience, do except enjoy the one or two seasons that were aired before the cancellation.
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