Before heading towards talking about the cheapest movie ever made, let’s understand the system of money flow in filmmaking. Because of the volatility of demand, the money flow in filmmaking is a one-of-a-kind mechanism. The film’s creators have no idea how well the film will be accepted when it is released. They may forecast that a film will sell well and recoup the cost of production, but they will only receive a part of the money. Alternatively, the inverse may occur, with a project that few believe will succeed bringing in more profit than expected.
The usage of stars is a significant gaming component that is also involved. Stars are frequently recruited on to a project in order to increase the film’s visibility and fame. This method can be beneficial, but it is not a fail-safe method of obtaining financing. A well-known actor may agree to appear in a low-budget film in exchange for a cut of the profits.
Now, lets take a look at,
The cheapest movie ever made is –
The Blair Witch Project (1999)
Known as one the most successful cheapest movie ever made, ‘The Blair Witch Project’ was released in the year 1999. It was made on a shoestring budget of approximately $60,000 and generated a humongous amount of almost $249 million dollars worldwide.
Talking about the film, Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez wrote, directed, and edited the supernatural horror film in 1999. The fictional story is about, Heather Donahue, Michael C. Williams, and Joshua Leonard who are the three student filmmakers who walk into the Black Hills in Burkittsville, Maryland in 1994 to produce a documentary on a local legend known as the Blair Witch. The three vanish, but a year later, their equipment and film are recovered. The film that the spectator sees is said to be “recovered footage.” In 1993, Myrick and Sánchez created a fake Blair Witch tale.
They wrote a 35-page script with spontaneous dialogue. The filmmakers placed a casting call ad in Backstage magazine and cast Donahue, Williams, and Leonard. The film began filming in October 1997, with eight days of primary photography in Maryland. The film was shot over the course of 20 hours and cut down to 82 minutes.
When The Blair Witch Project opened at the Sundance Film Festival on January 23, 1999, at midnight, the performers were labelled as “missing” or “dead” in the promotional marketing campaign.