Turnaround (filmmaking)

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A turnaround or turnaround deal is an arrangement in the film industry, whereby the production costs to a project which one studio has developed are declared a loss on the company's tax return, thereby preventing the studio from exploiting the property any further. The rights can then be sold to another studio in exchange for the cost of development plus interest.[1]


Michael Cieply defined the term in The New York Times as "arrangements under which producers can move a project from one studio to another under certain conditions".[2]


  • The 1993 film My Life's in Turnaround, starring Martha Plimpton and Phoebe Cates, tells the story of two friends who attempt to sell the story of their lives to a variety of studios.
  • The 2012 film Argo uses several references to the film that was faked for the 1980 CIA Iranian hostage extraction operation also entitled Argo as being "in turnaround." [3]

References and notes[edit]

  1. ^ Michael Cieply (2008-08-23). "The Murky Side of Movie Rights". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ Michael Cieply (2008-08-29). "Studio War Involving ‘Watchmen’ Heats Up". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-09-01. 
  3. ^ David Edelstein interviewed by Terri Gross on review of Argo: (2012-10-12) http://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=162785168