Country Focus: Germany
High market share for national films in Germany
by Birgit Heidsiek
- With a total of 129.7 million cinemagoers, the exhibitors in Germany generated a box-office revenue of more than one billion euros in 2013. While cinema attendance dropped by 4% and the box office declined by 1%, the German national film industry did very well for itself, with 33.6 million viewers. More than one in four cinema tickets sold was for a German film.
The most successful title of 2013 was the school comedy Suck Me Shakespeer [+see also:
interview: Jella Haase
film profile] by Bora Dagtekin, with 5.6 million cinemagoers. Altogether, seven German productions such as The Physician [+see also:
film profile], the children’s adventure Famous Five 2 [+see also:
film profile] and the horror film Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters [+see also:
film profile] attracted more than one million visitors. “We hope that German cinema will become similarly successful as it was in 2013,” said Peter Dinges, chairman of the Federal Film Board (FFA).
While German films proved to attract a growing audience, the box-office results of foreign movies were not as strong as they used to be. For the second time, all of the international films showing in Germany received fewer than 100 million cinemagoers. However, in 2013, 3D titles remained quite strong, with 31.3 million tickets sold.
The FFA has also set up a huge programme to support the digital transition within cinemas. In less than three years, more than 1,800 screens have received a cash injection from the FFA as well as some regional film funds to finance their conversion to digital. According to the most recent FFA study, the number of theatres in Germany has continued to shrink, decreasing from 1,054 to 890 cinemas. Dinges is afraid that even more screens will close because they cannot afford the digitisation process. “We have already developed some measures in order to save them,” said the chairman. “We hope that the government will green-light these support measures before it is too late and the cinemas have to close down.”