by Seija Rankin | Thu., Nov. 16, 2017 6:00 AM
All the Money in the World is up against all the problems in the world.
The film, which is about the 1973 kidnapping of John Paul Getty III, was gearing up for a Christmas release and a hopeful awards contention when the news of Kevin Spacey's alleged assaults broke. The actor, who plays J. Paul Getty, was set to be front and center of Sony's planned award season campaign. Once the stories began to surface, the studio quickly cancelled its planned AFI Film Festival closing night showcase. There was speculation over whether the release date (originally planned for December 22) would need to be pushed back to allow for an investigation and a cooling-off period.
But, once the extent of Spacey's alleged transgressions became clearer (and after Netflix pulled the plug on House of Cards), the plan became much more drastic.
Director Ridley Scott quickly announced that he was going to replace Spacey's character with actor Christopher Plummer (who most people will remember as the very attractive Captain Von Trapp in The Sound of Music). That means completing an entire re-shoot (and re-editing) with barely four weeks left to go.
There are all sorts of logistics to consider and issues that could become very complicated and very expensive, like whether the other talent is available for the reshoot, booking the same shoot locations at the last minute and what the actors look like right now in comparison to when the original film was being made (we all remember Kate Mara's infamous Fantastic Four reshoots wig).
As for All the Money in the World, the shoots are currently scheduled to begin on November 20 and to take place in Rome and London—if anyone's keeping track, that's two very expensive locations and it just so happens to be the week of Thanksgiving. And, unfortunately for the team in charge of the reshoots, both Michelle Williams and Mark Wahlberg were in scenes with Spacey. On top of the fact that they both have children (which can complicate schedules during the holidays), according to their IMDb pages Williams is shooting a film and Wahlberg has several in pre-production.
Once the reshoots are all set, the studio will have to remake the trailer and all promotional material, re-edit the actual movie, and also huddle together to create an entirely new marketing campaign. Building notoriety won't be hard because of all the buzz that has circled the recasting, but they will want to reshape what people think of the movie and try to steer the public away from the shadow that Spacey's absence will inevitably cause.
Which leads to the big question: How much is this going to cost? The short answer is a crap ton.
The more complicated answer is that, according to Variety, it could total several million. Insiders believe that Wahlberg and Williams likely have a few weeks' worth of reshoots written into their original contracts for the film, but if the new filming period goes over then the studio would have to pay them extra. Plummer will have to be paid for his time, which is estimated to be about $250,000. It's also important to point out that all of these charges aren't likely to be covered by insurance, which means that someone is physically footing the (very high) bill.
Finally, the biggest question will be whether all of this will work. Will it be worth the millions of dollars and all the work? For All the Money in the World's award season chances to stay high they'll need to finish the project in time for critics to screen it by the end of the year. For its box office success to be feasible they'll have to hope that they can either convince audiences that they've done a solid job on the reshoots or at least elicit enough curiosity for everyone to want to find out for themselves.
For now, though, we wait.
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