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Box Office - Europa

Rapporto industria: Distribuzione, esercenti e streaming

Secondo l'UNIC, nel 2023 le presenze nelle sale europee sono cresciute del 21%

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La "Barbenheimer combo" e altri blockbuster stranieri hanno trainato gli incassi dello scorso anno, ma anche molti successi locali hanno ottenuto risultati impressionanti

Secondo l'UNIC, nel 2023 le presenze nelle sale europee sono cresciute del 21%
Asterix & Obelix - Il regno di mezzo, che ha venduto 4,6 milioni di biglietti e ha permesso alla Francia di raggiungere una buona quota di film nazionali al botteghino del 2023

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Earlier this month, the International Union of Cinemas (UNIC), the body representing European theatrical players and trade associations, released its 2023 box-office figures, covering 39 territories. These include the 27 EU member states as well as the UK, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Georgia, Israel, Serbia and Montenegro (counted as one territory), North Macedonia, Norway, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey and Ukraine.

The figures constitute an initial assessment of European cinemas’ performance last year, based on preliminary estimates, with detailed final data set to be released in the spring.

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Hot docs EFP inside

Overall, 2023 proved to be a successful year for European cinemas owing to international hits such as Barbie, Oppenheimer [+leggi anche:
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, The Super Mario Bros Movie, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One and Wonka, along with “a wide range of highly popular national releases”.

For the time being, UNIC estimates that European admissions grew by 21%, with total box-office revenue of €7.1 billion. These figures mark a revenue increase of 24% in Europe and 25% in the EU, compared with 2022, the latter being only 8% below the 2017-2019 results.

Zooming in on single territories, the UNIC figures highlight, “The Netherlands, Croatia, Albania, Serbia and Montenegro ended the year with box-office revenues above their 2017-2019 average.” In detail, the Netherlands “achieved nearly 32 million admissions”, or 27% more than in 2022, and earned €338 million, an increase of 31% on 2022. Serbia and Montenegro saw a box-office increase of 27% compared to 2022, mainly thanks to the local hit Guardians of the Formula [+leggi anche:
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by Dragan Bjelogrlić.

Germany, Italy, the UK, Spain and France also performed outstandingly. German box-office takings totalled €859 million, up 24% on 2022, while total admissions increased year-on-year by 19% to 87 million.

Next, France achieved 181 million admissions, thus marking a 19% increase compared with 2022. The UK box office generated total revenues of over £978.5 million (circa €1.14 billion), an 8.5% increase.

Italy’s box office earned €496 million and admissions totalled 71 million, and thus the country recorded “impressive increases of 62% and 59%, respectively, on 2022”. In Spain, admissions rose by 22% to 75 million, with box-office takings of €489 million.

Meanwhile, Austria, the Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary and Slovakia were on a par with their pre-pandemic box-office results. It is worth mentioning, however, “the simultaneous release of two films that captivated audiences worldwide”, known as “Barbenheimer” and involving Greta Gerwig’s Barbie (the highest-grossing film ever directed by a woman, topping the British, Irish and German charts, and earning $1.44 billion globally) and Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer (which earned over $952 million worldwide).

Local titles also played a key role in achieving these 2023 box-office figures. In France, 12 national films scored over one million admissions, with three reaching the year’s top ten: Asterix and Obelix: The Middle Kingdom [+leggi anche:
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(4.6 million admissions), Alibi.com 2 [+leggi anche:
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(4.3 million) and The Three Musketeers: D’Artagnan [+leggi anche:
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(3.4 million).

In Romania, for the first time, four domestic releases ended up in the top ten, with Miami Bici 2 being seen by 430,000 viewers in just three weeks. In Italy, the domestic market share also increased, achieving 24.3% of total revenues and 25.9% of admissions. Italian titles grossed €120.7 million in 2023, twice as much as in 2022. Paola Cortellesi’s post-war dramedy There Is Still Tomorrow [+leggi anche:
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was the top-grossing film of the year, with box-office takings of €32.9 million (the fifth-most-successful Italian film to date).

In addition, during the Christmas holiday season, three out of four Norwegian cinema tickets were sold for a domestic film, such as The Brothers Gruff Go to Splash World by Will Ashurst and William John Ashurst, and Christmas on Cobbler Street by Mikal Hovland. Throughout 2023, Norwegian films accounted for 23.7% of total revenues. In Denmark, four domestic titles reached the top ten – The Land of Short Sentences [+leggi anche:
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, Before It Ends, The Promised Land [+leggi anche:
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and The Kiss [+leggi anche:
intervista: Bille August
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– and were watched by a total audience of 1.1 million, delivering the same market share as Barbenheimer.

Furthermore, UNIC states that national cinema days achieved significant success across Europe. For example, France’s La Fête du Cinéma attracted 3.1 million cinema-goers, whilst Poland's Święto Kina drew in an audience of 550,000, with Polish films accounting for 40% of ticket sales.

Gower Street Analytics estimates that the 2024 global box office will top $31.5 billion (circa €29.04 billion), with EMEA estimated to reach $8 billion (€7.37 billion).

Commenting on these figures, UNIC CEO Laura Houlgatte said: “The impressive figures for 2023 show that the big screen has lost none of its allure for European audiences, with a mix of fantastic international films and superb national titles. The sheer diversity of programming and experience on offer means cinemas have something for every taste and every age group.

“This is an industry with an unparalleled record of innovation and which continues to deliver. Some challenges remain – the impact of the Hollywood strikes and increased operational costs among them – but 2023 is proof that cinemas are as popular as ever.”

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