Jim Carrey was paid nothing for his role in Yes Man and made a fortune from its release
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Jim Carrey was paid absolutely nothing for his role in Yes Man but reportedly still managed to pocket a huge sum of money from the release of the film. Here’s the trailer, so you can get a feel for what the movie was like.
Obviously, Jim Carrey probably isn’t short of a couple of quid – the guy has been starring in huge movies for decades, taking significant roles in everything from gross-out comedies like Dumb & Dumber through to blockbusters like Batman Forever and critically-acclaimed flicks like The Truman Show and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
However, whilst you’ll no doubt remember some of those performances, you might not remember the film Yes Man quite as well.
It was a romantic comedy released in 2008 that was based (very loosely) on a non-fiction book by British comedian Danny Wallace, and tells the story of a man who simply decides that he says ‘no’ a little too often.
After a meeting with a guru, he resolves to say ‘yes’ to just about everything, leading to a set of hilarious, unfortunate, and serendipitous events.
That’s the basic premise, anyway.
You’ll have to watch it to get any more than that.
Anyway, when it was released back in the 2000s, the film was pretty divisive, with critics affording the production mixed reviews.
However, it was a box office success, taking $223 million against a budget of $70 million.
One thing that they didn’t have to pay for out of that budget was Carrey’s salary, because he apparently decided to do something a little bit different instead of taking a straight pay cheque.
Given that he knew himself to be one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood, Carrey is said to have hedged his bets and instead taken a 36.2 percent stake in the whole profit of the movie.
It’s a huge gamble to take but it paid off in the end, as Carrey bet on himself to bring the viewers to the cinema.
In the end, it has been reported that the actor made anywhere between $35 million and $50 million.
And if you work out the profit of the film as $153 million - $223 million takings minus a $70 million budget - the numbers come out at around $55 million, though we obviously don’t know the specifics of the deal.
Honestly, it varies quite a bit depending on which report you read, but either way it’s a significant increase on the $20 million that he reportedly charges when he takes on a role.
More actors might consider doing this in future, providing that they can count on the film to be a success.
Matt Damon once revealed that he turned down a role in James Cameron’s Avatar for which he was offered 10 percent of the total film.
Given that it became the biggest film ever at the box office at the time, that would have seen him receive easily the biggest fee that anyone ever made as an actor.
Oh well, Matt Damon isn’t struggling for a few quid either, is he?