The Most Expensive Movie Scene Ever Filmed

Hollywood is a money-making machine, capable of drawing huge audiences and generating massive profits. Of course, such alluring entertainment isn’t cheap to make. With huge competition, each movie needs a unique attraction, which requires lots of money and lavish budgets. The most expensive movie scene filmed to date was that of the Times Square scene in the 2001 film Vanilla Sky. In the scene, perfectly-groomed playboy millionaire David Aames — played by Tom Cruise — wakes up, gets into his vintage Ferrari, and drives through the streets of New York to Times Square. “The Crossroads of the World” has approximately 330,000 daily passersby, but not on that day. It’s completely empty; not even the faintest hint of the usual hustle and bustle. At only 30 seconds of screen time, the scene provides a fundamental function in the narrative — questioning the nature of reality and our relationship to dreams. In the scene, no CGI was used. Instead, director Cameron Crowe struck a deal with the NYPD to close off the area between 5AM and 8AM on a Sunday in November 2000. The result was a spectacular sequence with a spectacular price tag: over $1 million for 30 seconds of footage.