So far, I’ve seen one news outlet after another talk about the disappointing opening weekend for Evan Almighty: $32.1 million. That return might not be so bad for a comedy, except this one cost anywhere between $175 million and $220 million to make, according to the same outlets.

Now, personally, I have almost as little interest in seeing Evan Almighty as I did Bruce Almighty. The only difference? I’ll see most things with Steve Carell in them, but I avoid movies with Jim Carrey in them. So, for me, spending that much money on the movie doesn’t seem like a good decision. However, maybe that’s just me?

Oh, wait…Hollywood has this great little tool they can use for decision-making. It’s called revenue, and it comes in numeric form. You know what Bruce Almighty made in the U.S. in box office receipts? $242 million. Worldwide it made $484 million. It was made for $80 million.

Did the studios — the project was dropped by one and picked up by another — really think spending over twice as much money would get them a similar increase in return? Or are they just satisfied pulling profit from foreign markets and DVDs, so the budget for any sequel can be equal to the estimated domestic revenue? (And if that’s the case, why the emphasis on first-weekend returns?)

Oh, by the way, the Wikipedia link just recounts the entire plot of Evan Almighty, so you might want to avoid it if you’re planning to see the movie. Or, like me, you can read it and realize you apparently aren’t missing anything exciting. 😐