Russia's Movie-Theater Admissions Reach Five-Year High in February

Courtesy of Universal
'Fifty Shades of Grey'

'Fifty Shades of Grey' significantly contributed to the increase in attendance, compared to the same month the year before.

This February, movie-theater attendance in Russia reached a five-year high, according to Moscow-based Movie Research. The erotic drama Fifty Shades of Grey mostly fueled the growth.

Last month, 16.7 million admissions were registered in Russia, the highest February figure since 2011 and an 18-percent increase from February 2014, Movie Research said.

According to Movie Research, the increase was mostly due to Russian audiences' interest in foreign films, primarily Fifty Shades of Grey, which accounted for almost 30 percent of Russian admissions last month.

Meanwhile, the proportion of local films in the total number of admissions declined substantially, by 43 percent to 3 million admissions, compared to February of last year. The main reason for the sharp decline was the fact that 2014's highest-grossing local movie, Viy, was released in February and accounted for the lion's share of admissions that month.

Released in Russia on February 12, Fifty Shades of Grey is the country's top grossing movie to date, having earned $17.9 million (1.1 billion rubles) locally. The release of the movie sparked some controversy, and it was banned in Russia's North Caucasian Muslim republics due to explicit sexual content.

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