When is a 231% profit a loss? Apparently when MGM says it is. At least that is the implication one could draw from this recent report in the Los Angeles Times:
Returns of $231 million in worldwide box office wasn’t enough to turn a profit on “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.” Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer disclosed in financial results released this week that it is booking what Co-Chief Executive Gary Barber called a “modest loss” on the film. On a conference call with shareholders, he said the independent studio, which covered 20% of the approximately $100-million production budget for the movie co-financed and distributed by Sony Pictures, needed “Dragon Tattoo” to collect about 10% more revenue in order to break even.
As a result, he said that while talks with Sony are ongoing for a potential sequel based on the second book in the “Millennium” trilogy by author Stieg Larsson, MGM would participate only “assuming we can achieve better economics” — Hollywood-speak for a lower budget.