Czech cinemas enjoying record earnings
Looking at the sales for Czech cinemas for the last half year, it seems there’s no business like show business for riding out an economic crisis. This week, the Union of Film Distributors released the results of domestic cinemas for the first six months of 2010, and they showed record earnings – a whopping 747 million crowns – as well as nearly a million more movie-goers. Christian Falvey has this report.
Indeed, roughly a fourth of total cinema earnings in the Czech Republic came from the 3-D sci-fi epic Avatar alone, which has been watched by 1.3 million Czech viewers since its release in mid-December. This success was possible thanks to 79 DCI 3D screens in the country, 40 of which can be found in regional towns and cities. And while the 3D bonanza can be found across Europe, the Czech market is also boosted by the unique fondness that Czechs have for Czech film. Mr Danielis estimates that 25% of cinema-goers so far this year have been attending Czech movies, such as the latest by comedy director Jiří Vejdělek, Women in Temptation, which has made half of what Avatar has in roughly half the time.
What does all this success say about the real harmfulness of the film distributor’s main nemesis, the internet pirate? Mr Danielis himself has often spoken out against piracy, and so I asked him if the positive trends in cinema profitability don’t show that piracy is less destructive to the business than is often thought.
For now, maybe the only thing better for Czech cinemas would a Czech film in 3D: as it stands, good news is right around the corner: three such films are in now in production.