I found this little nugget of info buried within an essay that Roger Ebert wrote from Cannes.
Here is Bob Shaye, president of New Line Pictures. He has invested $170 million (270 million I think -Xo) in “Lord of the Rings,” which will come out at Christmas. “Everyone thinks we’ve bet the company,” he says, “but after selling the international rights, the video and the after-markets, we’re 85 percent covered. What kills me is the cost of sequels. `Rush Hour’ cost us $32 million. It’s a hit, so we make a sequel. The sequel costs $92 million.”