If you rewind back to a few months ago, Ridley Scott's All the Money in the World was just one of many awards-friendly films in the fall movie season. Despite the talented cast, the celebrated director and the true crime story, it was one movie among many that could have earned awards nods. Fast forward to now and All the Money in the World has become one of the most interesting production stories in recent memory. In light of sexual misconduct allegations against Kevin Spacey, director Ridley Scott decided to do reshoots replacing the actor with Christopher Plummer in the role of J. Paul Getty. Even with the rushed nature of the unplanned reshoots, the actors wound up doing them for free. As director Ridley Scott tells it:
Everyone did it for nothing. They all came in for free.
This is pretty remarkable and is no doubt a huge help considering the 22 scenes that needed to be reshot cost over $10 million. The director notes to USA Today that of course Christopher Plummer and the crew were paid for their work on the reshoots. The fact that Michelle Williams and Mark Wahlberg, actors who are household names in high demand, gave up their time over the Thanksgiving holiday to see this movie completed definitely speaks to their belief in the film. The reshoots were done in a very compressed timeline with the movie's release date set for less than two months away. It is just fortunate that the actors were available and willing, because now the film will still make its release window and be up for awards consideration.
It would be easy for the stars of All the Money in the World to chalk this up as a loss and move on. Coming back and doing the reshoots for free speaks to their character and faith in Ridley Scott. It's no easy thing to have a film that you worked on and put your time and your energy into overshadowed by something completely beyond your control. There is also the consideration that this film is based on a true story where real people's lives were affected. As an artist you would likely want to do justice to that and not allow external factors to do a disservice to the story. Had this film been released with Kevin Spacey still in a pivotal role, it would never be judged entirely on its own merits.
While All the Money in the World will never entirely be divorced from the nature of its production and its former star, it seems that this move has paid off. Christopher Plummer has received a surprising Golden Globe nomination for his work in the film in addition to the nominations received by Michelle Williams and director Ridley Scott. You can see how the final product turned out when All the Money in the World hits theaters on Christmas.