'Moonlight' Is the Lowest Budget Film to Ever Win Best Picture at the Oscars

'Moonlight' Is the Lowest Budget Film to Ever Win Best Picture at the Oscars
Courtesy of TIFF
Barry Jenkins' stunning Moonlight cleaned up at this year's Academy Awards, and it was unprecedented for a number of reasons. Mahershala Ali was the first Muslim to ever win an Oscar after taking home Best Supporting Actor, and the film's Best Picture win has dominated the news cycle after the award was mistakenly handed to La La Land. Better yet, data suggests Moonlight is the lowest-budget film to ever take home Best Picture.

Indiewire has crunched the numbers and determined that Moonlight is the most frugal Best Picture of all time. To do so, they looked at previous winners and adjusted their respective budgets for inflation. 

Since it only cost $1.5 million USD to make, Moonlight is the cheapest film by a landslide. In fact, as Indiewire observes, the film cost less than a 30-second commercial slot during the actual Oscars broadcast.

See the 10 cheapest films to ever win Best Picture below, and be sure to read our interview with Barry Jenkins here.

10. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) – $13.5 million
9. Platoon (1986) – $13.3 million
8. The French Connection (1971) – $10.8 million
7. Crash (2004) – $8.4 million
6. On the Waterfront (1954) – $8.2 million
5. Tom Jones (1963) – $8 million
4. It Happened One Night (1934) – $5.9 million
3. Rocky (1976) – $4.6 million
2. Marty (1955) – $3.2 million
1. Moonlight (2016) – $1.5 million