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Country Focus: Germany

Positive 2008 results show rise in admissions


- On the eve of the Berlin International Film Festival, the FFA (regulatory body for German film) unveiled positive results for 2008. There was an increase in admissions, thanks in particular to the success of local productions.

The total number of viewers for 2008 stands at 129.4m, representing an increase of 4m (+3.2%), compared to the disappointing 2007 results. Box office takings amounted to €794.7m – €36.8m more than in 2007 (+4.9%).

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FFA director Peter Dinges said that the best news was the 26.6% market share achieved by German titles, a level that hadn’t been reached since 1991. Domestic films attracted a total of 33.9m viewers and 11 productions surpassed the 1m admissions mark, a record since reunification.

The biggest hit was released at the start of the year: Til Schweiger’s Rabbit Without Ears [+see also:
film profile
(4.9m admissions). The film outperformed Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (4.8m) and Quantum of Solace [+see also:
making of
film profile

For the first time, a documentary – German/UK co-production Earth – appears in the Top 10, with 3.8m admissions. Dinges also drew attention to the international popularity enjoyed by German film in recent years, notably at the Oscars.

In German theatres in 2008, there were 13 fewer releases than in 2007. A total of 471 films were launched, including 185 German (co-)productions, 154 US productions, 93 European films and 39 titles from other countries.

Overall, the mood is thus optimistic for both German film and exhibitors. In 2008, 95 theatres opened or re-opened and 117 closed down, generally for economic reasons. However, in 2007 there were 134 closures (136 in 2006), so the trend points to a decrease in the number of cinemas closing down.


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