Cultural diversity

Publications and Studies

Marché mondial du Film - Faut-il internationaliser le financement des films? - Situation de la production et de l’exploitation du film dans le monde

FOCUS 2004 – Observatoire européen de l’audiovisuel, Bruxelles, le 13 mai 2004 - 2004/05/13

In a statistical report entitled World Film Market Trends, the European Audiovisual Observatory notes that European films did well in their national markets in 2003, but performed poorly elsewhere. The Observatory indicates that more films are being produced, whereas ticket sales in the EU have declined. Specifically, “954 million cinema tickets were sold in the 25 Member States of the European Union, a decline of 4.4% in relation to 2002.”American films increased their share of a shrinking market by 1.6%, while European films traveled with less success. In addition, “752 films were produced in the 25 Member States of the European Union in 2003, an increase of 25 films (+ 3%) in relation to the total estimated for 2002 (727 films).”Among the major markets, only France saw an increase in the number of productions, with a new record of 212 films, while Germany, Italy, and Spain suffered from the decline in coproductions. The May 10, 2004 edition of Le Figaro headlined that “Europe has yet to harmonize film industry funding.” According to the magazine, “while American films continue to dominate Europe as a whole, member countries are working to develop funding systems to revitalize a long-neglected film industry.” The magazine also notes that the European countries have all developed national film centers to coordinate funding systems and take action on related economic and political issues, and that as a result of their initiatives, the European Commission did not question film funding late last year. Nonetheless, the article notes that “European solidarity has not prevented countries from developing highly diverse funding systems.” For example, England, Germany, Benelux, and the northern European countries favor tax incentives for producers who shoot their films in the country. “Under this system,” notes the magazine, “producers can write off 100% of a film budget during the fiscal year.” In France and southern Europe, TV networks are the main contributors through a special taxation system generating revenues that are redistributed through a variety of film industry support funds. (Available in French and English)