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BOX OFFICE Switzerland

Record admissions in 2005

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With a domestic market share of 5.9%, Swiss films achieved their best results since 2000. Compared to 2004 (2.6%), admissions almost doubled, but are only up 0.2% with respect to 2003 (5.7%).

The success of My Name is Eugen [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, which attracted 513,000 spectators in 2005, obviously tipped the balance to reverse the trend, as did Ready, Steady, Charlie! in 2003 with its 560,000 admissions.

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Swiss production has been oscillating between 2% and 3% for a number of years, and this slight improvement should also continue in 2006 since, in early March, three Swiss titles topped the box office in the German-speaking part of Switzerland: Handyman, Vitus [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Christian Davi
interview: Fredi M. Murer
film profile
]
and Grounding: The Last Days of Swissair [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
.

Even in French Switzerland, Grounding made American productions squirm (as well as successful French film Bronzés [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
), something that has not has happened in years and was long overdue. The 2005 data, recently p published by ProCinema, the association of exhibitors and distributors, shows that 91% of local admissions were in German Switzerland (71% of the population, 5.2m inhabitants) against 8% in French Switzerland (22%, 1.6m) and less than 1% in Italian Switzerland (7%, 0.5m).

They also published the 2005 results on documentaries. Considered by some as the flagship of Swiss film production (they accounted for 52% of feature-length production in 2004), documentaries, however, are not living up to their reputation. Their audiences fell by 50%, representing only 18% of admissions in 2005, and only three titles broke through the 10,000 admissions barrier. Nicolas Bideau, head of the cinema Section of the Federal Office for Culture since October, wants to see a rebalancing of the proportions unique to Europe, to the great discontent of the Swiss "documentary lobby".

Unfortunately, admissions are down slightly throughout most of the country. With 15.4m admissions, they fell by 12.8 % and only seven films were seen by more than 300,000 filmgoers. And although Madagascar was the biggest film at the box office with 686,000 tickets, US films disappointed the public, with their market share dropping by 10%, from 69.1% in 2004 to 58.7% in 2005. Nevertheless, European films rode out the crest of a wave in the Swiss market. Thanks to strong UK, German and French productions, audiences for European films rose to 28% in 2005 against 22% in 2004. And that is very good news!

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(Translated from French)

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