"It is pretty tacky to be overspending," he said. "It is not a good message for the world. When 40 percent of the homes in Brazil have no sanitation, you can't really be spending a billion reals for a show."
Rio delivers a simple, but spirited, Olympic welcome →
Creative director Fernando Meirelles said their budget was slashed by half as Brazil's economic recession bit ever harder.
Rio welcomes world with sultry music, plea for conservation →