'Fairytale' forecast for Kinowelt


COLOGNE, Germany -- German indie distributor-producer Kinowelt has caught soccer fever.

The phenomenal success of Soenke Wortmann's World Cup documentary "Germany. A Summer Fairytale" has led the German indie to up its year-end forecasts.

Kinowelt says it will earn more than €100 million ($132 million) in a fiscal year, for the first time since emerging from bankruptcy in 2002.

The Leipzig-based group had originally forecast earnings of €95 million ($125 million) for 2006.

But that was before Wortmann's documentary hit theaters in October.

"Germany. A Summer Fairytale" has sold almost 4 million tickets in Germany for a boxoffice haul of €23.8 million ($31.4 million), making "Fairytale" the most successful documentary ever in the territory.

Now, Kinowelt head Michael Koelmel is predicting revenues "above €100 million and a sharp rise in profits" for the year.

In 2005, Kinowelt saw revenues jump 41% to €78.5 million and net profits more than double to €3.6 million.