Risky Reels

Insuring the Dream Factory

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    The $500-million U.S. film insurance market is riskier than others, but the entertainment business is lucrative and steadily growing.

  • Facts


    • Disney reportedly insured its Star Wars series against the death of star Carrie Fisher for $50 million, a new record.
    • The largest sum ever paid in the German film insurance business was $1.7 million.
    • Allianz, through subsidiary Fireman’s Funds, wants a larger chunk of the U.S. market, but is also venturing to other continents.
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Celebrity Sightings in New York City – September 27, 2016
Shooting movies comes with a lot of risk. Sometimes, insurers refuse to cover films if the screenplay appears too bold or risky. Source: Getty Images

When Carrie Fisher, the actress best known for her immortal role as Princess Leia in the Star Wars film series, passed away just after Christmas, it was a farewell that stunned millions around the globe.

But it wasn’t just movie fans and the global film business that were rattled– another industry sighed at the sad news. Besides the human tragedy of Ms. Fisher’s passing, her death also results in an expensive insurance claim.

Disney, producer of the Star Wars movies, did not leave anything to chance when it came to the cult classic cash cow. The firm had taken out insurance in case Ms. Fisher wouldn’t be able to fulfill her contract that included “Episode VIII,” which is currently being filmed and she had already shot scenes for, as well as “Episode IX” for which shooting hasn’t even begun yet. According to U.S. media reports, Disney is now demanding that insurance in a claim worth $50 million – the largest sum ever to be paid for the untimely death of a Hollywood star.


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