TV Shows That Cost a Ton of Money to Make Per Episode

How expensive a show is usually has to do with several factors. They have to worry about the venue, the actors, the extras, the settings, and many other factors that go into making a show that runs for just thirty to sixty minutes. When you factor in that most shows only run 22 to 45 minutes thanks to commercials you’re getting even less time for the same amount of money. Most fans would state that movies cost far more and they’re right, but that’s for five to ten times the effects and difficulty. Sitcoms aren’t entirely easy to make sometimes but they are far less intense than most films.

Here’s what some shows cost to make per episode.

True blue fans of the franchise wouldn’t blink an eye at this, perhaps thinking that it’s just as it should be since the show was such a hit during its run. But a good portion of this went to the actors, more to some than others, and this left only so much in the budget for sets and other needed extras.

The effects and extras needed on a show such as this could easily explain the cost, though one would easily believe that it might top Friends and many other shows for cost. It’s really a matter of what you do with the money you have in some cases.

Venues can cost a big bundle and obtaining the permits to shoot in certain areas can’t be cheap since being on location with some shows has to cost an arm and a leg. Those sites that are being used are usually owned by those that would like some compensation for the trouble.

Most shows cost a bundle for the actors, some for the sets and equipment that need to be used. It’s kind of surprising that any show such as this would be lower than a regular sitcom simply because a lot of them are filmed in various locations where the permits must be extremely expensive.

I’m actually kind of floored that it’s cheaper to make an episode of Game of Thrones than it is for Friends. Maybe the actors drew more money in Friends than was possible in GoT, but considering their levels of popularity it makes just a bit of sense. Friends had a lot more staying power after all and catered to a more diverse fan base.

This still seems high even for a show such as Frasier. Sure he was popular and his sitcom was a hit for a while, but he only had so many sets.

I would have thought the actors in this show would have pulled down a lot more to drive the price of each episode up. Maybe the venues were fairly cheap.

The shows that deal with less reality and more fantasy seem to pull down the least amount per episode which is funny in a way. I would have thought making stuff up would cost more.

Understandably there weren’t a lot of different sets to use and at the time it was filming a lot of the cast weren’t that well known.

Some shows that were hot when they started kind of lost their verve after a while and the producers just stopped trying as hard.

This is actually very surprising. The make-up for all those extras alone should have driven this price way up. Maybe they found someone to give them a discount or two.

Has Bryan Cranston ever made a huge paycheck? He’s definitely the right caliber of actor for a big payday at this point.

For such a popular show you would have thought that it would be more involved and cost a lot more. But maybe it was doing more with less that made this show so hot.

I can see Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright taking a good chunk out of the budget for each episode.

How much of this was tied up in insurance and safety measures to insure the well-being of the cast and the extras?

It’s mind-boggling how much some of these shows cost per episode.


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