Cannes: How Much Does It Cost to Do Business at the Festival?
THR's dollar-by-dollar breakdown, from hotel rooms with nightly rates as high as $30,378 to a $40,000 tab racked up entertaining clients at a strip club.
This story first appeared in the May 16 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
How Much Cannes Costs a Movie Company
The rule of thumb is $500,000 to $1 million in Cannes expenses for any movie -- studio or indie. Take DreamWorks Animation's How to Train a Dragon 2. With the cost for talent estimated at $100,000 a person for travel and lodging, and if DWA brings the top four or five stars to the fest -- Kit Harington, Kristen Wiig, Jonah Hill, Gerard Butler, Cate Blanchett -- the bill begins at $500,000. Factor the obligatory party into the total cost and the bill gets even bigger. The average cost of a party at a beach venue is $150,000, which includes champagne, canapes, laser lights, an official photographer and music. (One way studios and film companies have learned to trim expenses in recent years is to host a filmmaker dinner limited to 25 people for $20,000.) Throw in a billboard for as much as $100,000, and DWA is looking at close to $1 million in expenses for bringing the animated sequel to the Croisette.
Most expensive wine
That's the price for the 1990 Chateau Petrus at the Carlton hotel. Regardless of how pricey the wine, however, the high volume of meals consumed during the festival is impressive: The Majestic Barriere, for example, does 1,200 servings a night in its restaurant during the festival.
Notable strip-club expense
The amount of the bar bill at a strip club paid by a French sales company taking buyers out for a night on the town, a source tells THR.
Cost of a Palme d'Or
The amount it costs to make one 18-centimeter-tall trophy, which Chopard supplies free to the festival. It's formed from a single 1 kilogram block of crystal covered in 118 grams of 24-karat gold. This year, the awards were made with sustainable gold from Eco-Age's "green carpet" initiative, founded by Livia Firth, wife of Colin.
Most expensive billboard
The garden at the Carlton, which costs $108,852 (€78,475) for the 12 days of the festival.
Most expensive hotel room
The 650-square-meter penthouse suite 349 at the Majestic, which costs $30,378 (€22,000) a night. Runner-up: the Carlton's 380-square-meter Sean Connery suite, at $27,620 (€20,000) a night. In total, there are more than 80,000 overnight stays in Cannes. This figure includes the city's 8,000 hotel rooms, plus 2,000 apartment spaces (200 of them on the Croisette). To rent an apartment space for the entire festival costs anywhere from $7,000 (€5,000) for one bed to a newly renovated apartment with a terrace overlooking the water for $100,000 (€72,000). High-end Cannes hotels realize 15 percent of their annual revenue during Cannes.