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Country Focus: Italy

Italy 2003 - Distribution and exhibition

by 

- 2002 was a good year for cinema in Italy and especially for Italian films.

DISTRIBUTION
Fewer big films were produced and perhaps that is why Italian cinema managed to increase its share of the domestic market to 22.2 per cent from 2001’s 19.4 per cent. According to Cinetel 216 Italian films were programmed in 2002, 114 of which were new releases (coproductions included): an increase of 8 and 28 films respectively. 16 Italian films broke the Euros1m barrier at the box office and 3 entered the top ten titles of the year.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

The postive performance was not the exclusive domain of Italian cinema. American films in Italy saw a 5.99 per cent hike in attendance, and although this is distant from the Italian results. There was an 8.33 per cent increase in US films while Italian films (coproductions included) increased by 22.16 per cent.
As far as Europe is concerned, French films lead the field with a significant 6.04 per cent share of the Italian market while British films dropped to 3.77 per cent after the 10.4 per cent of 2001.
The sour note is the concentration of box office takings by a handful of titles. That is also the clearest sign of the weakness of the Italian film industry. 63.4 per cent of the gross box office take was generated by just five Italian films, and 87 per cent by the first 16.

EXHIBITION
There are around 6000 cinemas in Italy and the sector is dominated by multiplexes with at least 8 screens. There are 51 operating at present in Italy. This year 15 new multiplexes were opened, bringing an additional 154 screens.
25 million tickets were sold for films screened at multiplexes, that is around 30 per cent of the potential filmgoing population. The forecasts for 2004 are that multiplexes will absorb 50 per cent of the Italian filmgoing population.

STATE INVERVENTION
The Direzione Generale per il Cinema (Italian Film Board) supports the theatrical distribution of Italian films by covering the costs of prints and advertising campaigns both at home and abroad.
The Film Board also supports the promotion of Italian cinema both in Italy and abroad as well as all other activities of a cultural nature that regard Italy’s film heritage. That includes festivals and reviews, national film associations, film libraries, university institutes, conferences and publishing, awards and various other promotional activities. The Ministry for Culture also control Cinecittà Holding, the National Film School and the Venice Biennale, part of the promotional activities of Italian cinema at home and abroad.
The State also manages cinemas in a variety of ways that include investing in technological innovation, modernisation of existing theatres and the transformation of some single-screen theatres into multi- screens.

TABLE OF DISTRIBUTION - BOX OFFICE - EXHIBITION


Market share - in percentage points 2002 Difference 2002/2001
Italian films + coprods. 22.22 +2.80
Films France 6.04 +2.24
Films United Kingdom 3.77 -6.63
Films USA 60.18 +0.48
Total EU (not Italy) 12.4 -4.7
Total extra-EU (not USA) 5.2 +1.4
Source: Anica


Italian Imports in 2002 Difference 2002/2001
Total Film Imports 285 -19
European Film Imports 83 -6
US Film Imports 169 -12
Source: Anica


Box Office 2002 (Euro) Difference 2002/2001
In percentage points
Total Box Office 525.010.326 +7.84
Total Box Office
Italian Films + coprods.
116.548.464 +24.18
Total Box Office
US Films
315.951.324 +8.33
Souce: Anica & Anem with Cinetel data


Spectators 2002 Difference 2002/2001
In percentage points
Totale 89.175.917 +5.99
For Italian films
& coprods.
19.885.224 +22.16
For US films 53.272.275 +6.28
Source: Anica & Anem with Cinetel data

The Season's Top Ten (From 01-08-2002 to 26-01-2003)

Pos. Film Nat. Distribution Box Office (Euros) Attendance
1
Christmas on the Nile
Ita
Filmauro 28.723.197 4.607.264
2
Pinocchio [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
Ita
Medusa Film 26.170.391 4.563.525
3

The Legend of Al, John & Jack [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]

Ita
Medusa Film 22.247.978 3.585.636
4
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Usa
Warner Bros. 20.757.406 3.496.990
5
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Nz
Medusa Film 13.865.510 2.242.857
6
My Big Fat Greek Wedding
Usa
Nexo 13.067.223 2.091.269
7
Signs
Usa
Buena Vista 11.144.227 1.828.890
8
Minority Report
USA
20th Century Fox 10.283.449 1.702.902
9
Road to Perdition
USA
20th Century Fox 9.697.429 1.554.928
10
Unfaithful
USa
Medusa Film 9.300.410 1.475.750

(Cinetel)


The Top Ten of 2002

Pos. Film Nat. Distribution Box Office (Euros) Attendance
1
Pinocchio [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
Ita
Medusa Film 26.170.391 4.563.525
2
The Lord of the Rings
NZ
Medusa 21.582.503 3.615.193
3

Spider-Man

USA
Columbia/
Tristar
19.274.833 3.306.124
4

The Legend of [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]

Al, John & Jack [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]

Ita
Medusa Film 19.191.396 3.092.388
5
Christmas on the Nile
Ita
Filmauro 18.930.747 1.088.387
6
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Usa
Warner Bros. 17.237.488 2.912.885
7
A Beautiful Mind
USA
UIP 14.681.008 2.242.857
8
Signs
USA
Buena Vista 11.141.794 1.827.727
9
Ocean's Eleven
USA
Warner 10.297.097 1.716.554
10
Minority Report
USA
20th Century Fox 10.281.170 1.702.404

(Source: Anica with Cinetel data)

 

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