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INDUSTRY Hungary

2007 results prove mixed

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2007 results prove mixed

According to data revealed to Cineuropa by the National Film Office, the number of Hungarian titles produced in 2007 rose to 41 feature films, compared to 45 in 2006, and 26 in 2005. This trend demonstrates the effectiveness of the Hungarian system of tax incentives, which is, however, likely to be amended this summer at the behest of the European Union (see article in English Filmhu).

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It should be noted, however, that these tax advantages had no significant impact on the number of Hungarian accredited international co-productions, of which seven were produced last year (12 in 2006 and nine in 2005).

The average budget for domestic films declined slightly, to €959,000, compared with €1.1m for the previous two years.

On the other hand, there has been a clear increase in public funding with, notably, €21m in backing from the Motion Picture Public Foundation of Hungary (MMK), compared to €12.6m in 2006 and €8.5m in 2005.

On the basis of the funding strategies for features presented at the latest Hungarian Film Week (titles that will be included in the 2008 film production assessment), MMK cover 29.75% of estimated costs and tax deductions account for 11.5%.

Television networks cover 6.8% of the costs of film production. This includes backing from public channels MTV (2%) and Duna TV (0.16%), and private channels RTL Klub (3.24%) and TV2 (1.28%).

Foreign contributions accounted for 37.13% of the estimated costs of the features selected at this year’s Film Week.

Audience figures for Hungarian theatres rose again in 2007 with 11.11m admissions (10.5m in 2006), whereas the number of screens continues to decline, having dropped from 466 in 2005 (in 244 theatres) to 439 in 2006 (218 establishments), reaching 412 at the end of 2007 (194 theatres).

The 31 multiplexes in Hungary also lost one unit compared to the previous two years.

Another trend to be watched closely is the clear decrease in admission prices, from €4 in 2005 and 2006, down to €3.49 in 2007.

In terms of distribution, 205 films hit Hungarian screens in 2007, including 28 domestic features, with a market share of 9.8% (12% in 2005 and 2006). US productions continue to dominate the Hungarian market, representing 81% of admissions in 2007 (78.6% in 2005 and 2006) and claiming top spot in the annual box office rankings with Shrek 3 (736,550 viewers) while the best-performing domestic film (Tamás Sas’ SOS Love! [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
) garnered 238,000 admissions.

Domestic box office hits in 2007 also include Róbert Koltai’s The Train Keeps a Rollin' [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, Béla Ternovszky’s animated film Cat City 2, Gábor Rohonyi’s Konyec [+see also:
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film profile
]
and Gábor Herendi’s Lora.

The domestic top 10 closes with Railroad Junkies, Nosedive [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, 56 Drops of Blood, Opium - Diary of a Madwoman and animated feature Egon & Dönci.

(Translated from French)

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