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Culture

French movie ticket sales slump in 2013

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-01-03

Overall, 2013 was not a good year for cinema in France. Despite the country’s great love affair with film, box-office sales hit a startling low, dipping 5.3 percent on the previous year.

With apparently fewer and fewer people going to the movies, only 192.8 million tickets were bought in 2013, making it the first time in four years that sales have fallen below 200,000.

“It’s below the average for the past 10 years, which is 195 million,” Benoît Danard, director of research, statistics and trends at France’s National Cinema Centre, told the AFP news agency.

While there are myriad reasons that could explain the decline in box-office sales, such as the growing popularity of online streaming, Danard blamed poor attendance on a lack of hit films.

“We’re clearly missing smash hits,” Danard explained.

“It’s the first time in a decade that not a single film has sold more than 5 million tickets,” regardless of their nationality, he said.

US-made movies overtake French films

The numbers come in stark contrast with recent years. In 2012, there were three films that exceeded the 5 million mark. The year before, driven in part by the success of France’s own “The Intouchables,” was even more successful with an overall box-office haul of 217 million tickets sold.

Furthermore, US-made movies took 53.9 percent of the market, accounting for 103.9 million ticket sales, in comparison with 42.7 percent in 2012. It was the first time the US took more than 50 percent of the French box office in more than 10 years.

Despite the lackluster turnout at movie theatres, Marc-Olivier Sebbag, CEO of the National Federation of French Cinema, pointed out that sales in France during “2013 remained high,” in comparison with other European countries.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)

Date created : 2014-01-03

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