It's a joke that's been doing the rounds ever since the release of The Martian back in October. How much money has been spent on bringing Matt Damon home from far away and dangerous places?
Well someone with far too much time on their hands has done some calculations and come up with an estimate. And it's a lot.
Quora user Kynan Eng decided to break the question down in terms of both actual, real-life movie budgets and the estimated costs of bringing the fictional characters played by Damon home and here it is:
Courage under Fire: $46m
Saving Private Ryan: $70m
Titan AE: $75m
Green Zone: $100m
The Martian: $108m
My estimates, costs are in 2015 currency
Courage Under Fire (Gulf War 1 helicopter rescue): $300k
Saving Private Ryan (WW2 Europe search party): $100k
Titan AE (Earth evacuation spaceship): $200B
Syriana (Middle East private security return flight): $50k
Green Zone (US Army transport from Middle East): $50k
Elysium (Space station security deployment and damages): $100m
Interstellar (Interstellar spaceship): $500B
The Martian (Mars mission): $200B
TOTAL: $900B plus change
So a trillion US dollars if you round up. Now some could argue that Interstellar figure shouldn't be included because that mission wasn't trying to bring Damon's character home but if you allow yourself to get into that debate aren't you as bad as Kynan Eng?