Packer declines to confirm ‘The Audition’ film cost

Melco Crown co-chairman James Packer sidestepped confirming the price tag of the 15-minute film/advertisement directed by Martin Scorsese that was screened at the opening of Studio City this week.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Packer declined to say whether the film cost $70 million – which is the figure that has been circulating in the media prior to the release – saying “if that was the case, and you thought about it the way I just described it, all of a sudden it’s not so much.”

The film features Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio playing themselves and competing for a role in a new Scorsese film. Brad Pitt also makes an appearance.

“The way I think about it is — our company, Australia Crown, is paying for half of it, and Lawrence’s company is paying for the other half of it. And so if the numbers that are quoted are right, and it’s over three years, and you divide that by two, it’s 11 bucks a year,” he said. “For the best marketing campaign in the history of the world. So it depends on how you allocate and look at it,” he told the Times.

Though “The Audition,” which only took a week to film, is set partly in the Studio City resort, as well as in the Philippines and Japan, the entire production was actually filmed in New York and appears to involve CGI.