the world digest
LONDON — U.K. television viewing is forecast to jump more than 4% over the next five years, driven by older viewers' adoption of digital technology and a growth in the number of 16-to-34-year-olds, according to U.K. research firm Attentional. The new report suggests that, with the availability of more channels via digital platforms, older viewers are watching for longer periods, and while average viewing levels for young adults are expected to drop, a surge in population, driven by such factors as immigration, means total viewing for the 16-34 demographic will grow 5% by 2012.
BRUSSELS — Film will be at the heart of 2008's European Year of Intercultural Dialogue, which aims to boost European understanding across languages, religions and ethnic backgrounds. The yearlong event will have a budget of $14.5 million, in addition to funds from EU capitals, to foster a variety of projects across Europe. These include seven flagship trans-European projects and 27 national projects. The program comes as many policymakers in Europe have raised fears that globalization will grind down local ideas and traditions.
ROME — Italy's national association of exhibitors, ANEC, on Thursday called on film distributors to hold back the release of blockbuster films, complaining that the high number of films in distribution over the early part of the year has been counter-productive. ANEC president Paolo Protti called the situation a "cannibal effect," meaning moviegoers were being forced to choose between too many options. ANEC said that some of the top films released so far this year, both Hollywood and domestic fare, should be held for months closer to the traditionally slow summer season.