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The cinema industry in italy

After a prosperous 2016, Italian films suffered a massive decrease in admissions, which caused Italian cinema attendance to decline from 105 million to 92 million admissions (-13%). Italian films had sold almost 33 million tickets in 2016, boosted by the breakout success of “Quo Vado?”, which had generated almost 9.4 million admissions. In contrast, cumulative admissions to local films almost halved in 2017 (~18 million) causing national market share to plummet to 18%, the lowest level since 1993. In 2017 only two Italian titles reached the top 20: “L’ora legale”, a comedy about corruption in politics starring Ficarra and Picone (comedy duo), selling 1.8 million tickets, and romantic comedy Mister Felicità (1.7 million). Both were considered to be disappointing results for top local comedies, which used to achieve much higher results in past years. Some market observers consequently diagnosed audience loss of interest in comedy fare, while others blamed the proliferation of films online as well as piracy for the decline. Led by Beauty and the Beast and Despicable Me 3, US studio blockbusters dominated Italian box office charts. Cumulatively US films slightly increased admissions and US market share jumped from 55% to 65%, the highest level since 2000. GBO dropped almost proportionally with underlying admissions, falling by 12% to EUR 613 million. Just as in 2016, Warner Bros led the Italian distribution market, taking 19.3% of total admissions, followed by Universal (17.9%), Walt Disney (13.3%) and 01 Distribution (10.1%). Like in Germany, the number of new film releases decreased somewhat, from 554 to 536 in 2017. Production and funding Italian feature film production volume hit a record high of 235 films produced in 2017, driven by an increase in 100% national films. The Italian film industry is now hoping to benefit from the enactment of the new film law (Nuova Legge Cinema e Audiovisivo) which took effect in January 2017 and has been implemented through a series of decrees throughout the year. Among many other measures, a new Film Fund, administered by the Ministry of Culture MiBACT, was set up and equipped with a budget of at least EUR 400 million per year. This measure effectively augmented state film funding by 60%. An automatic funding scheme was introduced, while selective funding – now aiming primarily at debut and second films – was reduced. The new law furthermore aims to improve Italy’s tax credit schemes, by providing six different kinds of tax credits, among other things to support the development of movie theatres and the digitisation of artistic heritage.

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