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Movies generate US$4.3 billion for Euro broadcasters

Imported feature films generated US$4.31 billion for European broadcasters in 2011, according to new research, with Warner Bros the leading distributor.

The value created by movies, mainly hailing from the US, fell slightly year on year against the 2010 figure of US$4.33 billion , but was up sharply on the 2009 figure of US$4.17 billion. The number of hours screened (98,961) was, however, the highest in recent years.

The report, from Madigan Cluff, ETS and Digital TV Research, measures the value created by advertising around the airing of movies, largely on commercial free-to-air channels. The 2011 figures show the market for movies among broadcasters has proved resilient despite the challenging economic conditions, audience fragmentation and the emergence of OTT and other platforms and technologies.

The report shows that the US studios accounted for over two-thirds of the imported movies. Warner Bros shopped the most titles of all the majors by a large margin ahead of NBC, Fox, Paramount, Sony and Disney respectively.

There was a noticeable difference in the value created and hours screened in different territories. Michael Cluff, co-author and director at Madigan Cluff, said: “German channels contributed nearly a quarter of the total value in 2011, followed by Italy and the UK. Together these three countries accounted for 52% of the total.”

Jonathan Bailey, co-author and managing director at ETS, added: “The total number of imported feature film hours in Europe hovers just below 100,000 each year. Germany was the leader again in 2011, followed by the UK and Russia. However, France and the Netherlands are notable absentees from the list of top countries.”