In terms of admissions, attendance also dropped drastically from 2019 to 2021.
If the new Minister of Culture, Rima Abdul Malak, wanted to be reassuring this morning on France Info stating that during the Covid epidemic, “the culture sector has held firm, not a cinema, a theater, a bookstore has closed (in France)“, a report by UNIC, the International Union of Cinemas, is much more pessimistic. At the CineEurope convention, which is currently taking place in Barcelona, Spain, she held a panel to explain that a loss of at least $20 billion has been recorded by the cinema industry in Europe in the last two years. !
She thus recalls that in 2019, the receipts of dark rooms in Europe had broken records, amassing 9.3 billion dollars (8.8 billion euros), but that it fell to 2.8 billion (2 .62 in euros) during the following year. In 2021, it rose a little, without reaching half of the historic score of 2019, i.e. 3.9 billion dollars (3.7 billion euros). Decreases which are obviously explained by the closure of many rooms during the pandemic, but also by the difficult recovery since. In France, some recent blockbuster successes (Spider-Man: No Way Home, Uncharted, The Batman, Top Gun: Maverick…) hide in fact a very complicated reality, where few films manage to repay themselves at the box office.
Sad month of March for French theaters despite The Batman and Le Printemps du Cinéma
The UNIC also highlights the slightest presence of novelties. While 480 unreleased films were offered in 2019, there were 250 in 2020 and 270 last year. In 2021, 95 of these were US productions, and just a handful accounted for one-sixth of total cinema ticket sales across Europe in that period: Dying Can Wait, Spider-Man: No Way Home, Dune, F9 and Venom: Let There Be Carnage alone sold 98 million tickets out of 589 countermarks distributed. Moreover, in number of tickets too, the fall is vertiginous: there were 1.3 billion in 2019, and 432 million in the following year.
However, the report is encouraging for 2022: it predicts an increase in revenue of 62%, or 8.1 billion dollars in revenue for all of Europe. This will not reach the 2019 record, but will approach “pre-Covid” scores…
Why do the French go to the cinema less often? This study by the CNC takes stock