Michelle Williams reportedly made less than 1 percent of what her co-star Mark Wahlberg did for reshoots for director Ridley Scott’s kidnapping drama All the Money in the World. Without question, All the Money in the World is one of the most remarkable films of 2017, not in terms of its box office, but because of how Scott pulled off the seemingly impossible by slicing apart his completed film weeks before its release, reshooting key scenes and releasing the film before year’s end, just in time for awards season consideration.
A story inspired by the incredible true-life tale surrounding the kidnapping of the 16-year-old grandson of billionaire oil magnate John Paul Getty in 1973, All the Money in the World originally starred disgraced actor Kevin Spacey as the elder Getty, but the completed film was put into jeopardy when several allegations of sexual misconduct against him surfaced in the fall.
Facing a quick box office death if not a cancellation of the film’s release altogether, Scott made the unprecedented move of cutting Spacey’s scenes from All the Money in the World and recasting the role with Christopher Plummer, who reportedly shot his scenes in a nine-day span in late November. The move immediately paid dividends, as an 11th hour screening for members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association yielded three Golden Globe nominations: one for Williams for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Drama, Best Supporting Actor for Plummer and Best Director for Scott. As for the film’s box office, it’s earned $20.4 million domestically since its Christmas Day release.
As far as reshoots were concerned, money appeared to be no issue for All the Money in the World, as millions of dollars were spent to get the film back into shape. But on the surface, it appears there was a huge disparity in the areas where the money was dispersed, particularly between the two of the film’s three stars. USA Today reports that Wahlberg, who played Getty’s negotiator in the film, was paid $1.5 million to reshoot the scenes that replaced Spacey with Plummer, while Williams, who played the mother of Getty’s kidnapped grandson, was paid a $80 per diem per day, which came to less than $1,000 to do the reshoots. Doing the math, that meant that Williams was effectively paid less than one percent of the amount Wahlberg was paid to reshoot the scenes for the film.
According to USA Today, the idea to shoot for free (apart from the per diem) was a conscious decision. The information came from an interview USA Today did with Scott, who said he nor any of his actors were paid to do the reshoots, which he says totaled $10 million dollars. Plummer was paid, naturally, because this was his first go-round on the film.
Certainly there’s some sort of explanation that will come out over why Wahlberg required a salary while the other principals opted to forego any fees, but for the time being USA Today’s request for comment from Scott, Wahlberg, Williams, WME (which represents each of the actors), Sony Pictures and production company Imperative Entertainment have yielded no responses. USA Today reports Wahlberg’s team negotiated the reshoot fee, and Williams wasn’t told about it.
The timing of the report certainly isn’t good news for All the Money in the World. Coming two days after the Time’s Up initiative targeting sexual harassment and gender inequality in Hollywood, a story about the massive pay gap between a male and female star on a high-profile film is not the sort of publicity All the Money in the World needs. Granted, the circumstances behind the pay disparity are extremely unusual, so if Wahlberg’s people are looking for any silver lining, perhaps they will come up with an explanation of why their client demanded a fee while others did not.
KEY RELEASE DATES
All the Money in the World release date: Dec 25, 2017