Milan, 14 February 2011
2010 EVEN BETTER THAN 2009, A RECORD YEAR FOR
CINEMA-GOING IN EUROPE’S CINEMAS
The number of spectators in all of Europe’s
cinemas continues to grow, from Portugal to Russia: in 2009 there were
1,179.3 million, rising to 1,184.6 million, with a 0.4% increase in 2010.
These are the figures announced by MEDIA Salles in the traditional appointment
at the Berlinale.
If Europe as a whole is characterized by a positive trend, the analysis
of individual markets, presented by Elisabetta Brunella, Secretary General
of MEDIA Salles, reveals contradictory results. The 18 countries of Western
Europe totalled 897.2 million spectators with a 2.6% decrease compared
to 2009, when 921.2 million tickets were sold. Instead, Central-Eastern
Europe and the Mediterranean Rim, comprising 15 countries, recorded considerable
growth: 11.4. From 258.1 million, tickets sold rose to 287.4 million.
Even within Western Europe, a common trend does not emerge during 2010:
there are markets that grow and others that record a dip.
Of the five main countries, France, which in 2009 had crossed the “psychological
threshold” of 200 million, consolidating her position as Europe’s
leading market, continues to grow to 206.5 million (+2.7%), the best result
since 1967. The highest growth rate is recorded in Italy, where the increase
in audiences is estimated at around 11%. Ticket sales in theatres operating
for at least 60 days a year rise from a little over 107 million to around
119. A negative result for the United Kingdom, which does, however, manage
to contain the drop (-2.4%) and hold on to its second place in Europe
with 169.3 million tickets. In Spain the drop is greater, decreasing by
11.7% and closing 2010 with a drop to below the 100-million-spectator
mark. Lower admissions for Germany, too, which counts 126.6 million, losing
almost twenty million tickets (-13.5%), i.e. more than those gained in
2009. The reason for this difficult year is the poor performance by domestic
movies: it is here that the twenty- million-ticket difference gap with
2009 is to be found.
A dip of similar proportions to that in Germany is recorded in Norway,
which closes 2010 with a 13.2% drop, stopping at 11 million spectators.
In Northern Europe a minus sign for Denmark, too, (-8.4%), together with
Sweden (-9.1%), whilst Finland sees her audiences grow by 10.3% and rise
from 6.8 million to 7.5.
Decreasing admissions in Ireland (-6.6%), Austria (-6.0%), Luxemburg (-5.6%),
Greece (-5.1%), Switzerland (-3.7%), to a total of a little over three
million tickets, are partly compensated for by the increase in spectators
in Belgium (where a rise of around 5% is estimated), Portugal and the
Netherlands. In 2010 the latter market crossed the 28-million-ticket threshold,
doubling the results at the beginning of the ‘Nineties.
Central-Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean
Outstanding in this area are the record increases recorded in Romania
(around 29%, following the 32% in 2009), Bulgaria (22.8), Estonia (19.5%)
and Russia (19.4%). The latter country gains over 25 million spectators,
becoming the third largest European market in 2010, right behind France
and the United Kingdom.
Considerable increases are also recorded in Turkey (13.9%), the Czech
Republic (8.6%) and Latvia (8.3%).
A large market, as is Poland’s, closes 2010 with a minus sign (-12.6%)
and, after an exceptional 2009, which brought her close to the 40-million-spectator
level, settles at 34.2 million, nonetheless a flattering result and amongst
the best in the past decade.
Croatia remains stable, whilst a drop, though not as steep as Poland’s,
is to be seen in Lithuania (-6.8%), the Slovak Republic (-5.6%), Cyprus
(-3.6%) and, according to estimates so far, Malta (-3%).
The figures already published on box office show that in 2010 the trend
towards rises in average ticket prices is continuing, in connection with
the greater offer of films in 3D, where price increases of around an average
two euro are applied on Western European markets.
In Austria the average ticket price rises from 7.09 euro to 7.53, in Germany
from 6.67 to 7.27, in Spain from 6.10 to 6.52, in Italy from 6.07 to around
The spread of digital screens which experienced an authentic boom in Europe
in 2009 (+205%), continued in 2010. The data collected by MEDIA Salles
shows that at 20 June 2010 the number of European screens with DLP Cinema
or SXRD technology amounted to 6,680.
Compared to 1st January 2010, when there were 4,684, the increase over
six months amounted to 43%. The number of digital screens also equipped
for 3D grew, too: from 3,467 it rose to 5,277, attaining a penetration
The first figures on digitalization in Europe
at 1st January 2011 will be announced by MEDIA Salles on Wednesday
16 February 2011 in Krakow, at the Conference organized
by the Malopolska Digital Circuit.
MEDIA Salles is a project operating within the
European Union’s MEDIA Programme, whose twentieth
anniversary celebrations it shares in 2011. This project, which
enjoys the support of the Italian Government, promotes
European cinema thanks to work on training and information involving European
cinema exhibitors. Attention focuses in particular on the theatrical developments
and implications of digital projection and on the training
of exhibitors in this field: in a video, now also appearing on YouTube,
MEDIA Salles presented in Berlin the eighth edition of “DigiTraining
Plus”, the only initiative by the MEDIA Programme to deal
with the new technology from the perspective of the movie theatre. The
course will be held from 29 June to 3 July in
Helsinki and Tallinn.
A video on the course was presented in Berlin on 12 February 2011
and can now be seen at this link:
Work on information, including their consolidated
tools for the promotion of European films, has recently been integrated
by MEDIA Salles by added attention to the social network. A page has been
created on Facebook, with a constantly updated information
service: the calendar of international releases for Italian
films, with dates, countries of release and a wealth of other information.