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(click on highlighted terms to reveal glossary)

As a film producer, your first task is to put together a budget for your next movie.

This activity allows you to work out the budget for your film given the choice of different treatments; screenwriters; directors; actors; soundtracks and marketing strategies.

Be careful, though. If you go over budget, you’ll have to go back to square one and start all over again.

Can you create a box-office winner that won't cost too much?

Read through the different options that you have, then click on the one that you think would make a box-office hit. When you have finished, see if you are under budget. If you have gone over budget, click on ‘Clear All’ to start again.

Launch the budgeting activity


Imagine that you have managed to raise the money to make your film.

  • You have hired the best possible team to make it
  • You and your film cast and crew have worked hard for a long time (years, probably) to create and make the best film that you can
  • Your film is released - first in cinemas - and advertised to the public
  • You hope that the people who leant you the money to make the film in the first place can be reimbursed for their investment

Now assume that the film does well at the cinema box-office, but not quite as well as you'd hoped. You then learn that, while the film was out at the cinema and shortly before it was released in other forms, a copy of it was taken and made available on the Internet. This was of course done without your permission.

If 1 in 15 people who saw the film during its cinema run actually watched it on a counterfeit DVD or online rather than in a cinema, then those people may decide not to go to the cinema to see the film at all.

If those 1 in 15 people had all bought a cinema ticket, what could this have added to the film's box-office - as a percentage?

Check your answer

Working area

To find the percentage of the money that was lost to film theft:

  • Divide 100 by 15
  • Then multiply by 1
    (100 divided by 15 multiplied by 1 = 6.66% box office loss)

So, if you made £1 million at the box office, you have potentially lost £66,600. This could be the wages of two or three members of the film crew.

It’s not fair, is it?

Sadly, this happens too much in the real world. That's why it's important to help spread the word that watching dodgy copies of a film (on DVD or downloaded) is against the law and unfair to all the people who worked on the film.

It's simple: if people don't go to see as many films at the cinema, or if they watch them on counterfeit copies instead, then fewer films can be made.



The total number of tickets sold at the cinema.

Box-office winner:

The film that sells the most tickets at the cinema.


The money needed to pay for the film.

Counterfeit DVD / counterfeit

A fake copy of a film, they are usually bad quality


The person with the 'vision' of the finished film in their head. He or she is in charge of telling the cameras, crew and actors where to go and what to do on a film set.


Taking a copy of something stored on a computer

Film cast and crew:

The people behind and in front of the camera on a film set.

Film set:

The place where you are making the film.


Against the law.

Marketing Strategies:

The posters, trailers, television adverts and other campaigns used to make people interested in seeing the movie.

Over budget:

Spending too much.


Part of 100


Like the head teacher, the person on a film set who oversees everything – from raising the money to make the film, to its release at the cinema.



Reimbursed :

Paid back.


When a film is shown at the cinema for the first time.

Released in other forms:

When a film is made available to download or made into a DVD.


The people who write the film script.


Types of film.

Under budget:

Not spending too much.