Recreating the blank-check hedonism of ''Pretty Woman'' -- What Richard Gere actually spent on Julia Roberts in the film

The movie may be the surprise sleeper of all time, and it features an all-expenses-paid shopping spree that might make even Imelda Marcos’ head spin. In Pretty Woman, Richard Gere, as businessman Edward Lewis, picks up Julia Roberts, as $3,000-a-week Hollywood ”hooker on retainer” Vivian Ward, while tooling around in a white Lotus. Then, passing the stylish streetwalker off as his new love, Gere proceeds to treat Roberts to the finer things in life as seen through the eyes of a take-charge guy in the takeover game. If art really imitates life, however, it can get pretty expensive, especially when the art was made in Hollywood. Here are the true-life price tags that were paid when Richard met Julia.

Deals on Wheels:
You can’t cruise a boulevard looking for the call girl of your dreams without a classy chassis, and the movie’s mistreated Lotus will set you back $85,000. That’s for starters. Unfortunately, if you’d rather rent, a Lotus is not available in the L.A. area, but a Ferrari 328 stunt double should do. One may be obtained from Budget Rent-A-Car of Beverly Hills for only $600 per day and 50 cents per mile.

From No-Tell Motel to Big Frills Hotel:
The Presidential Suite at the Regent Beverly Wilshire is where Richard Gere and Julia Roberts stayed. For $3,000 a day, you’ll get all the wet-bar items, along with strawberries, champagne, and a Continental breakfast. Gere’s everything-on-the-menu breakfast with Roberts, however, would cost a minimum of $80, and real-world portions, the hotel informs us, are noticeably smaller than on the big screen. Tips for valet, concierge, and doorman add $50 per day, plus 20 percent for room service, but not to worry. They too will leave the light on for you.

Rodeo Drive-Buy Looting:
Julia’s shopping trip garnered her a black lace evening dress custom-made by the movie’s costume designer and worth some $1,500; eight Valentinos, namely three $2,500 suits, a $4,000 red gown, the nice polo-match dress for $1,800, and three other $1,500 dresses; a Maud Frizon handbag ($600), three pairs of Frizon shoes ($1,200); eight teddies and one negligee for $1,600; and a loud tie for Richard for $85. The large-with-everything pizza they ordered in from Jacopo’s is $19.48 plus tip. Total for her instant wardrobe: $26,804.48.

Expense Account Entertaining:
The business dinner for four at Rex is $565, plus 20 percent for the waiters and $20 to $100 for the maître d’.

Horsing Around in Style:
Gere’s sponsorship of the polo matches at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center comes to $60,000 per day, with food, parking, and security included.

A Night At The Opera:
Jetting to San Francisco for an evening and slightly more than one aria would set you back about $9,000, with $8,424 of that for the Gulfstream Jet.

Modern Cinderella Send-off: Gere’s final white-limo rescue was a real bargain: $45 an hour plus tip for the stretch steed and $75 for a dozen Regent Beverly Wilshire roses.

Total tab for a celluloid love affair to remember: $203,669.48.
And Walt Disney Studios, whose Touchstone Pictures produced Pretty Woman, should offer to pick up your check, since it wouldn’t make even a dent in the $165 million-plus taken in by Woman so far at the box office. Ghost willing, the movie figures to be the top-grossing film of 1990. So ain’t love grand, or at least worth many thousands of grands?

Pretty Woman
  • Movie
  • 119 minutes