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Press Release
Strasbourg, 5 May 2003


EUROPEAN CINEMA ATTENDANCE STAGNATES AS LOCAL FILMS FAIL TO TRAVEL
Growth in cinema attendance in the European Union in 2002 slowed to just 1%, with Great Britain among the most dynamic markets


Overall market share for films produced in Europe reached an estimated 27% in 2002, a drop in relation to 2001 (31%) but still an improvement on the score achieved in 2000 (23%)


The overall volume of feature film production remained stable in 2002, as British, French and German producers turned increasingly to co-production

Table 1 - Admissions in the EU
Table 2 - Admissions in European non-EU countries
Table 3 - Market shares of films distributed in the EU
Table 4 - Admissions to films distributed in the EU 2002

Table 5 - Admissions to European films in distribution in the EU

Production volume holds stable in 2002...

On the basis of available data, the European Audiovisual Observatory estimates that 625 films were produced in the European Union in 2002, a result very similar to that posted in 2001 (628 films). Countries that showed an increase in production levels were Austria (an estimated 26 films as opposed to 12 in 2001), Spain (80 entirely national films as opposed to 67 in 2001) and Italy (96 national films as opposed to 68 in 2001). Production levels dipped slightly in France (from 172 films of French initiative in 2001 to 163 in 2002), the United Kingdom (64 national or majority co-produced films in 2001, 60 in 2002), whereas the decline was more pronounced in Portugal (14 films in 2001, 6 in 2002). British, French, and German producers showed renewed interest in co-productions, whereas in Italy and Spain the principal increase in volume came from entirely nationally financed films.

British films remain those with the highest budgets, reaching an average of GBP 5.99 million (EUR 9.98 million) in 2002, while French average production costs also rose to reach EUR 4.44 million (an increase of just 1%). The year 2001 had also seen a sharp drop in the number of US productions shooting in Great Britain, with only 3 films shot there in 2001 as opposed to 11 in the preceding year. Figures for 2002 show an improved situation, with 6 Hollywood productions availing of British production facilities.

...while growth in admissions slows

Total admissions in the European Union had grown by an exceptional 10% in 2001. Growth slowed in 2002, with a 0.5% increase bringing total admissions to an estimated 933 million. Results were stable or positive in the majority of countries with Finland showing the strongest growth (18.5%) chiefly due to recovery from the very disappointing result obtained in 2001. It was the United Kingdom market that registered the strongest performance, reaching a total of 176 million tickets sold (a 13% increase on 2001), thus becoming the second largest market in terms of admissions in the European Union after France. The most important declines were registered in Germany (-7.9%) and in Spain (-4%) and estimated figures for Belgium indicate an expected 3% drop.

Table 1: Admissions in the European Union (1997-2002)
In Millions- Figures in italics are estimated or provisional
 
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2002/2001
AT - Austria
13,7
15,2
15,0
16,3
18,8
19,3
2,6%
BE - Belgium
22,1
25,4
21,9
23,5
23,5
22,8
-3,0%
DE - Germany
143,1
148,9
149,0
152,5
177,9
163,9
-7,9%
DK - Denmark
10,8
11,0
10,9
10,7
11,9
12,9
8,3%
ES - Spain
107,1
119,9
131,3
135,4
146,8
140,7
-4,1%
FI - Finland
5,9
6,4
7,0
7,1
6,5
7,7
18,5%
FR - France
148,9
170,1
153,6
165,5
185,8
185,1
-0,4%
GB - United Kingdom
139,3
135,4
139,5
142,5
155,9
176,0
12,9%
GR - Greece (est.)
11,6
12,4
13,0
13,5
13,5
_
_
IE - Ireland
11,5
12,4
12,4
14,9
15,9
17,3
8,8%
IT - Italy
102,8
118,4
103,5
103,4
110,0
112,0
1,8%
LU - Luxemburg
1,2
1,4
1,3
1,4
1,4
1,4
1,6%
NL - The Netherlands
18,9
20,1
18,6
21,6
23,9
24,0
0,4%
PT - Portugal (est.)
13,5
14,5
15,2
19.00
_
_
_
SE - Sweden
15,2
15,8
16,0
17,0
18,1
18,3
1,1%
EUR15 (est.)
766
827
808
844
929
933
0,5%
Source: European Audiovisual Observatory

Among non-European Union countries Estonia, the Russian Federation, Slovenia and Switzerland all registered positive results, with Estonia (19.5%) and Slovenia (12.9%) in particular showing strong growth. Attendances fell back slightly in Norway (-3.5%) and in Poland (-1.1%) and more significantly in Romania (-7.2%), Latvia (-7%) and Lithuania (-19%). A sharp drop was also registered in Turkey, where estimations for 2002 indicate a fall of around 16% in cinema admissions, a decline that would appear to be principally due to the lack of strong local films released during the year.

Table 2: Admissions in European countries non-Members of the European Union (1997-2002)
In Millions - Figures in italics are estimated or provisional
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002 (prov.)
2002/2001
BG - Bulgaria
2,69
2,33
1,92
2,19
2,01
n.c.
-
CH - Switzerland
15,50
15,89
15,43
15,59
17,11
18,8
9,9%
CZ - Czech Republic
9,82
9,25
8,37
8,72
10,36
10,70
3,3%
CY - Cyprus
0,93
1,01
0,84
0,93
0,86
0,91
5,8%
EE - Estonia
0,96
1,06
0,87
1,08
1,30
1,56
19,5%
HR - Croatia
3,23
2,74
2,30
2,74
2,94
2,77
-5,8%
HU - Hungary
16,57
14,58
13,39
12,41
14,11
n.c.
-
LT - Lithuania
0,57
1,59
1,78
2,10
2,37
1,92
-19,0%
LV - Latvia
1,27
1,42
1,38
1,46
1,15
1,07
-7,0%
MK - "The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia"
0,46
0,57
0,48
0,63
0,43
n.c.
-
MT - Malta
n.c.
n.c.
1,01
0,97
1,04
1,07
2,4%
NO - Norway
10,93
11,53
11,35
11,59
12,48
12,04
-3,5%
PL - Poland
23,70
19,90
26,62
18,70
26,20
25,90
-1,1%
RO - Romania
9,46
6,80
4,19
5,11
5,73
5,32
-7,2%
RU - Russian Federation
36,01
36,22
37,63
42,77
60,00
65,00
8,3%
SI - Slovenia
2,50
2,56
1,97
2,22
2,46
2,78
12,9%
SK - Slovak Republic
4,04
4,08
3,03
2,64
2,84
2,85
0,3%
TR - Turkey
17,77
22,64
24,84
25,26
28,16
23,60
-16,2%
Source: European Audiovisual Observatory

European films continue to perform well on their own markets, but results outside national markets are less encouraging

According to provisional estimates from the European Audiovisual Observatory, market share for European films in the European Union reached around 27% in 2002, a decline in relation to the exceptional 2001 figure (31%) but still a significant gain on the figures achieved in 2000 (23%). The market share of national films on their own market remained relatively stable, at 19.5% (a 3% drop in relation to 2001) but the performance of European films outside national markets was less encouraging, falling back by an estimated 27% in relation to last year's excellent results. Consequently American films recovered ground lost in the European Union in 2001, obtaining in 2002 a market share of 71% (65% in 2001)..

Table 3: Market shares of films distributed in the European Union (1996-2002)
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002 (prov.)
US Films
71,6%
67,0%
77,5%
69,2%
73,3%
65,4%
71,2%
National films on their own market
17,1%
21,3%
14,4%
17,5%
15,7%
20,1%
19,5%
European films outside their own market
8,8%
10,7%
7,1%
11,3%
7,2%
11,0%
7,9%
Others
2,6%
1,1%
1,1%
2,0%
3,8%
3,5%
1,3%
Source: European Audiovisual Observatory - LUMIERE database http://lumiere.obs.coe.int/
 
Graph 1: Breakdown of admissions in the European Union according to the origin of films (2002)

Source: European Audiovisual Observatory - LUMIERE database http://lumiere.obs.coe.int/

Table 4: Admissions to films in distribution in the European Union in 2002

Provisional ranking on the basis of available data from 12 European Union countries (around 79 % of admissions analysed)

 
Original title
Nationality
Year
Director
Admissions
1
US
2002
Chris Columbus
39 651 450
2
US
2002
Sam Raimi
29 839 465
3
US / NZ
2001
Peter Jackson
28 715 509
4
US
2002
George Lucas
27 771 038
5
US / NZ
2002
Peter Jackson
23 727 624
6
US
2001
Steven Soderbergh
22 446 379
7
US
2001
P. Docter & D. Silverman
22 235 989
8
US
2002
Barry Sonnenfeld
20 321 708
9
FR / DE
2002
Alain Chabat
19 679 380
10
GB / US
2002
Lee Tamahori
18 616 042
11
US
2002
C. Wedge & C.Saldanha
18 491 750
12
US
2002
Steven Spielberg
16 282 652
13
US
2002
M. Night Shyamalan
13 613 469
14
US
2001
Ron Howard
11 589 454
15
US / DE / GB
2002
Brett Ratner
9 670 347
16
US / AU
2002
Raja Gosnell
9 567 873
17
US
2002
Rob Cohen
9 434 712
18
GB/US/FR/DE
2002
Chris & Paul Weitz
8 744 433
19
US
2002
Guillermo del Toro
8 179 053
20
US
2001
Chris Columbus
8 074 317

(1)  21 609 078 admissions in the European Union in 2001
(2)  01 201 828 admissions in the European Union in 2001
(3)  43 579 135
admissions in the European Union in 2001

Source: European Audiovisual Observatory - LUMIERE database http://lumiere.obs.coe.int/

Franco-German co-production, Astérix & Obélix: Mission Cléopâtre was the European film to obtain most admissions in 2002, and only two other European films (both British - US co-productions) appeared in the overall Top 20 list for the year. Astérix & Obélix circulated relatively successfully in Europe in 2002, yet just 26% of the total of 19.7 million admissions to the film were registered outside its home market. Though the final total for the film should be slightly higher, it is interesting to compare this result with the final result for its predecessor, Astérix & Obélix contre César. This film, first released in 1999, registered 55% of a total of 19.1 million admissions in markets outside of France. Bridget Jones' Diary, the most successful European film of 2001, sold 63% of its total of 26.5 million tickets outside of the British home market.

Table 5: Admissions to European films in distribution in the European Union (2002)

Provisional ranking on the basis of available data from 12 European Union countries (around 79% of admissions analysed)

 
Original Title
Nationality
Year
Director
Admissions
1
Astérix & Obélix : Mission Cléopâtre FR / DE
2002
Alain Chabat
19 679 380
2
Die Another Day GB / US
2002
Lee Tamahori
18 616 042
3
About a Boy GB / US / FR / DE
2002
Chris & Paul Weitz
8 744 433
4
8 Femmes FR
2002
François Ozon
5 792 990
5
Hable con Ella ES
2002
Pedro Almodóvar
5 368 790
6
Gosford Park GB / US / DE / IT
2001
Robert Altman
4 938 785
7
Pinocchio IT / FR / DE
2002
Roberto Benigni
4 545 841
8
Resident Evil DE / GB / FR
2002
Paul Anderson
3 469 703
9
Le boulet FR / GB
2002
A. Berberian & F. Forestier
3 372 782
10
L'auberge espagnole FR / ES
2001
Cédric Klapisch
3 347 579
11
Bend It Like Beckham GB / DE
2002
Gurinder Chadha
3 333 867
12
La leggenda di Al, John e Jack IT
2002
Aldo Baglio & Giovanni Storti
3 306 124
13
Ali G Inda House GB
2002
Mark Mylod
3 105 662
14
Natale sul Nilo IT / ES / GB
2002
Neri Parenti
3 088 387
15
The Pianist FR / DE / GB / PL
2002
Roman Polanski
2 986 410
16
El otro lado de la cama ES
2001
Emilio Martinez Lázaro
2 697 314
17
Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain1 FR / DE
2001
Jean-Pierre Jeunet
2 504 636
18
Los otros2 ES / FR / US
2001
Alejandro Amenábar
2 298 268
19
Le peuple migrateur3 FR / DE / IT
2001
Jacques Perrin
2 209 503
20
Bibi Blocksberg DE
2002
Hermine Huntgeburth
2 050 214

(1)  14 094 971 admissions in the European Union in 2001
(2)  11 121 175 admissions in the European Union in 2001
(3)  01 512 175
admissions in the European Union in 2001
Source: European Audiovisual Observatory - LUMIERE database http://lumiere.obs.coe.int/
 

EUROPEAN AUDIOVISUAL OBSERVATORY, Strasbourg, France

Established in Strasbourg in December 1992, the European Audiovisual Observatory is dedicated to gathering, processing and publishing information on the European audiovisual sector. A European public service organisation, it currently comprises 35 Member States and the European Community which is represented by the European Commission. It operates within the legal framework of the Council of Europe and works with various partners, relevant professional organisations and a network of correspondents. Its main activities are producing publications, databases and a comprehensive Internet site.

www.obs.coe.int

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