There is a nice little Ratio Oscars exercise in the Metro newspaper today. The article looks at research comparing the cost of making films starring British actors, and the revenue they earn from American audiences. So, for example, for every dollar spent on films starring Daniel Day-Lewis, $4.50 is generated from audiences - while at the other end of the scale, Daniel Craig would only bring in $0.94.
The article names the top ten earners amongst British actors, and also the bottom ten. You could give students the names of the actors and see if they can rank them according to how much they think each might generate as income for the film makers, and then give them the amount that each does actually generate per $ spent by the audience.
Then suppose they were planning a new film which cost $150million to make; how much of a bonus, over and above that cost, would they be prepared to pay each of the actors to appear in that film? And instead of paying a flat rate fee, what would be the best form of financial incentive to give the actor?
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