After paying $2 million for the script on spec, Walt Disney Pictures quickly cooled their interest in The Sixth Sense and sold off the rights to Spyglass Entertainment. A psychological horror movie from the 28 year-old writer of Stuart Little (who would also be making his directorial debut) seemed like a hard sell, but Bruce Willis had enough confidence in the project to lower his usual salary in return for a percentage of the gross. It was a wise move from the balding action star, and resulted in the biggest payday of an already lucrative career. When all was said and done, The Sixth Sense ended up with six Academy Award nominations and a worldwide gross of $672.8 million. Lowering his usual $20-25 million salary to an on-the-breadline $14 million, I don't think even the erstwhile John McClane could have imagined how much the movie would end up swelling his coffers. As well as the salary and gross participation, Willis also negotiated a deal that would seem bag a percentage of the home video profits. Smart move, as The Sixth Sense went on to become the most-rented movie of 2000, finding its way into 80 million homes over the year. All told, the movie is estimated to have earned Willis a cool $100 million.
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