Russian Box Office to Reach $1.3 Billion in 2012

The Hollywood Reporter Russia Edition Launch Clooney - P 2012

The Hollywood Reporter Russia Edition Launch Clooney

Local films' market share is in decline.

MOSCOW – The Russian box office is to reach $1.3 billion this year, a 15 percent increase from 2011, while the local fare’s share is to decline.

Romir Movie Research said that Russia’s total 2012 box office gross is to be 40.5 billion rubles ($1.3 billion), 15.1 percent up from the previous year.

Local films are to gross 5.6 billion rubles ($181.8 million), which is the same as last year. However, the local fare’s share in the total gross is to decline from 15.9 percent to 13.8 percent, with the number of admissions to Russian films plummeting by 8.8 percent to 26 million. Last year’s figure for the total gross of local movies remains unchanged only due to the increased average price for movie tickets, which went up from 196 rubles ($6.36) to 215 rubles ($7).

According to Oleg Ivanov, head of Romir Movie Research, the main reasons for the decline in the local films’ share are the increased activities of Hollywood majors in the Russian market, a decline in private investment in the industry, which never recovered from the 2008 downturn, and high admission prices, compared with overall living standards in Russia.

And while the government has recently criticized filmmakers for their failure to compete with Hollywood at the box office, industry players say the current share of local films is to be expected.

“The existing share of Russian films is fair,” producer Sergei Selyanov said earlier this week at a round table devoted to state support for the film industry. “The share used to be higher because the total market’s size was smaller. Today, with the same box office figures, a movie accounts for about one half of what it used to in the total box office.”

Meanwhile, according to Romir Movie Research, in 2013, the total Russian box office is to reach 44.8 billion rubles ($1.45 billion), with the local share accounting for 16.7 percent.