Total 200.85m admissions in 2009
by Fabien Lemercier
08/01/2010 - Having ended with a bang in December with 22.04m admissions (+23% over the same month in 2008), 2009 recorded an exceptional total of 200.85m viewers in French theatres, according to estimations by the National Film and Moving Image Centre (CNC).
With a 5.7% increase compared to 2008, this score is the second best total of the past 40 years, after the 201.93m admissions in 1982. It was achieved mainly thanks to nine consecutive months of rising audience figures compared to those of 2008 (including a second semester at +18.7%).
In terms of market shares, French features attracted 37.1% of viewers in 2009 (compared to 45.3% in 2008, the year of the phenomenal hit Welcome to the Sticks [trailer], and 36.5% in 2007), while US productions claimed 49.8% and films from the rest of the world 13.1%.
At the box office – currently dominated by US blockbuster Avatar (7.7m admissions in three weeks) – several French productions stand out, in particular two distributed by EuropaCorp: Luc Besson’s Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard [trailer] (3.7m viewers in five weeks) and Radu Mihaileanu’s The Concert [trailer, film focus] (1.67m viewers in nine weeks).
Special mention should also be made of Nicolas Vanier’s Wolf [trailer] (944,000 admissions in four weeks - Pathé Distribution); and two titles released by StudioCanal: Frédéric Berthe’s Time Off [trailer] (900,000 admissions in four weeks) and Albert Dupontel’s
Among the non-domestic European titles, [REC] 2 [trailer] by Spanish duo Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza (distributed by Le Pacte and Wild Side) has attracted 364,000 horror fans, and Austrian director Michael Haneke’s The White Ribbon [trailer, film focus] (distributed by Les Films du Losange) has drawn 606,000 viewers in 11 weeks.
Meanwhile, Italian director Marco Bellocchio’s Vincere [trailer, film focus] (distributed by Ad Vitam) has garnered 217,000 admissions in six weeks and Belgian filmmaker Félix van Groeningen’s The Misfortunates [trailer, film focus] has got off to a good start, achieving this week’s third highest per-screen average with almost 36,000 admissions on a small print run of 39 (MK2 Diffusion).
(Translated from French)