Flemish and French "boost" figures (Part I)
by Anne Feuillère
31/01/2007 - 2006 was the year of Flemish productions.
The box office Top 25 of 2006 was dominated by US titles and featured only one French production (Les Bronzés 3 in fourth position), two US/UK co-productions (Casino Royale [trailer] and Nanny McPhee [trailer], in at number 7 and 15, respectively), and Tom Tykwer’s box office hit Perfume: The Story of a Murderer [trailer] (24th). The most successful Belgian film of 2006, as of December 31 – as the film was still being released – was Hans Herbots’ Storm Force 10.
In fact, it was the only Belgian film in the Top 25 in 2006. In 21st place, it garnered 226,422 admissions and grossed over €1.3m in its 12 weeks on screens. Released on 43 screens through Kinepolis Film Distribution, the film opened in the Netherlands on January 18 through RCV on 30 screens, making it one of the biggest releases ever for a Belgian film.
This adaptation of a highly popular Flemish television series (see news), starring the 2006 Belgian Shooting Star Kevin Janssens in a powerful role, even surpassed the performance of the last local box office hit, Frank Van Mechelen’s Hell in Tangier [trailer].
Released in March, Hell… closed with 185,228 admissions and over €1.18m grossed after 15 weeks in cinemas (see news). In contrast, the biggest box office hit of 2005 – Van Mechelen’s previous title, The Intruder – drew 181,440 filmgoers, pipping the Dardennes’ The Child [trailer, film focus] at the post (163,269 admissions).
There is cause for celebration, therefore, and not only because admissions are up - 23.8m admissions were recorded in 2006, 8.7% more than 2005 (21.9m) – but also because these figures should be seen in context. In Belgium, US productions made up 63% of admissions, compared to 24% for European films, 4.7% of which were Belgian productions.
There were 27 majority-produced Belgian films released in 2006 (compared to 26 in 2005). Although 19 of these were French-speaking productions, almost half of the top 15 Belgian films were Flemish.
Family films held the third and fourth spots: K3 en het ijsprinsesje (see news) and Piet Piraat en het vliegende schip, both distributed by KFD.
(Translated from French)