French moviegoing down this year


CANNES -- The first nine months of the year didn't give birth to swarms of filmgoers in France with a 1.1% drop in admissions in the territory from January through September, state film body CNC said Tuesday .

A total 136.5 million tickets were sold in France during the period, including 9.7 million for the month of September, a 2.4% drop from September 2006.

Admissions also dipped 2.1% to 187.1 million over the past 12 months. Despite a strong summer boxoffice boost with a 57.8% jump in admissions in July alone, disappointing results throughout the rest of the year kept total admissions low.

Filmgoers are steering away from homegrown fare with French films taking just a 36% market share from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30, compared to a 41.3% share during the same period in 2006.

Berets off to Hollywood, however, with a 50.7% market share for the first nine months of the year compared to 48.3% in 2006.

French films remain stable over the past 12 months with a 40.8% share compared to 40% over the same period the year before, while U.S. films saw a minor rise in market share over the period from 48.3% last year to 45.9%.