What does it take these days to make a tense courtroom drama without special effects, high action, or other costly elements? According to internal studio documents acquired by Entertainment Weekly, if the film is Columbia’s A Few Good Men and the stars are Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson, it’s about $40 million — excluding the tab for marketing and distribution.
Along with Cruise’s $12 million fee for starring as a military lawyer who defends two Marines accused of murder, Nicholson — whose role as commanding officer of the base puts him in only about a half-dozen scenes — will be paid a substantial $5 million. Demi Moore will collect just under $2 million to play a member of the defense team. Add in $650,000 for Kevin Bacon and $250,000 for Kiefer Sutherland, and the central-cast budget rounds out to roughly $20 million.
A Few other tidbits:
*Director Rob Reiner: $4 million
*Screenwriting: $1 million-plus, including $375,000 to William Goldman for his script-doctoring
*Makeup and hair: nearly $300,000, including Cruise’s personal hairdresser
*Two drivers for Cruise: $85,000 (at $2,500 apiece per week for 17 weeks of shooting)
*Cruise’s private plane and personal security: $55,000
*Moore’s personal trainer: $22,000