The Bold Business Move that Made Steven Spielberg a Multi-Millionaire
Steven Spielberg is hailed as one of the best directors of all time, and the mastery of his craft is evident in his box-office pictures ‘Saving Private Ryan,’ ‘Jurassic Park,’ and ‘Jaws,’ among others. These masterpieces enable the filmmaker to have a $3.7 billion net worth – but this figure isn’t solely because of these movies, but also because of two bets.
The 73-year-old is no doubt one of the most successful in the industry, and if you check other directors of arguably the same caliber, you would know that Steven certainly knows how to make serious money. Observe: Martin Scorsese has $100 million tied to his name; Christopher Nolan, $200 million; Robert Zemeckis, $60 million, and Quentin Tarantino, $120 million.
These estimations pale in comparison to Steven’s net worth, and a part of it is because of a deal he had with George Lucas. They are both exceptional directors, who have been good friends, and in fact, they are so close, that not even a bet could come in between them.
During the ‘70s, George was allegedly nervous about how his film ‘Star Wars’ would fare in the box-office and feared it wouldn’t be a success. Coincidentally, Steven was in the middle of production for ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind.’
When George visited his pal’s set, he was reportedly in awe and couldn’t help but think that Steven’s film was going to be better than his – during the time, the latter director was already an established filmmaker.
As anxious as he was, the Indiana Jones director said he would trade 2.5 percent of ‘Star Wars’ if it became a hit, and Steven would also do the same if his sci-fi picture would become a bigger success. Both films were critically received, but George’s creation out-earned his friend’s.
George ended up giving 2.5 percent to Steven, and that’s not all, according to some reports, the loser had to donate a building to the other person’s alma mater – hence, the School of Cinematic Arts in the University of Southern California.
Another deal that made him a multibillionaire happened way back in the ‘80s. MCA/Universal wasn’t as popular as it is now, but it had Steven by its side, so Warner Bros.’ Steve Ross wanted the director to work for his studio. With the resource to do it, the exec lured the filmmaker with a significant sum.
Universal didn’t have enough money to match Warner Bros.’ offer, Fearing that Steven might jump ships, it offered him a theme park clause, making him a consultant to all the parks. In return, his creations would exclusively stay with them.
Steven did stay with Universal, and his payout kept growing and growing until his payout. In 2017, he reached a deal with Comcast that it will take over his interest, which means he will get $1 billion out of it.
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