UNIC presents its 2015 Annual Report
by Birgit Heidsiek
- The document highlights the fundamental role of European cinema
European films are more popular than ever. According to the Annual Report by the International Union of Cinemas (UNIC), the market share of European films in the EU rose to 33.4% in 2014. While admissions in the 36 member territories went up by 1.7%, the box office increased by 0.6%. This positive development mainly stems from the trend in Eastern European countries that has seen cinema attendance become more attractive. Turkey’s box office increased by 29.5%, Romania’s by 15.4% and Slovakia’s by 10.4%. Meanwhile, in several Western European countries, exhibitors generated less revenue last year. In Germany, the box office dropped by 4.2%, in the UK it fell by 2.4%, in Denmark by 6.6% and in Italy by 7.1%.
Although major studio films from the US such as The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part I and How to Train Your Dragon 2 performed strongly all over Europe, the market share for national films across UNIC territories remained stable. Turkey led the way with a local share of 58.4%, followed by France, with a 44% market share of national movies.
French cinema was also very successful when it came to releases abroad. Titles such as Serial (Bad) Weddings [+see also:
film profile] achieved impressive results in several European countries, including Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Luxembourg. Furthermore, Luc Besson's action thriller Lucy [+see also:
film profile] even became one of the most successful films worldwide in 2014.
In its Annual Report, UNIC also points out the cultural, economic and social impact of cinema exhibition. As one of the leading sectors, movie theatres employ seven million people and generate 4.2% of the EU’s GDP. “Partners at the European Commission and Parliament consistently called for more evidence concerning the many economic, social and cultural benefits that cinemas contribute to society, as well as to the well-being of the entire film eco-system,” says UNIC president Phil Clapp in view of the review of the copyright framework that is currently taking place. “It is essential that they understand the fundamental role that our sector plays.”
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