19 janvier 2010

Foreign Film Friendly Audiences - World Cinema Stats (11)



5 commentaires:

Just Another Film Buff a dit…

Thanks for this wonderful addition to the series, Harry.

One question though:

As for chart number 2, how much of those admissions is really non-Hollywood movies? I guess not much. I feel the percentages show the hegemony of Hollywood more than the "open-mindedness" of the country towards world cinema. If this hegemony is indeed the reason, it explains (in chart 1) why Americans themselves get to watch a very few foreign films.

Also, would I be correct if I say that it is easier for a film from a particular European country to be seen received well in its neighboring counties than, say, an Asian film in the USA or even a Chinese film in India? Would this kind of pan-European cinema be considered foreign films in these countries?


HarryTuttle a dit…

Of course you're right. I wish I had the percentage of Hollywood movies for all these countries, unfortunately it's a rare data... I only have that for certain EU countries.

We know that Hollywood overwhelms the screens almost anywhere on Earth. But the point is that these countries, who try to develop a local film production, watch the most popular Hollywood movies AND their own domestic films TOO. The American population doesn't make the effort to experience a foreign culture in a language that might be different and with a different lifestyle, to the extent of giving this "unfamiliar" culture more weight than their own.

In the 3rd chart, countries at the top are not the most favorable situations, nor the best representant of cultural diversity. Because they are almost entirely dependent on foreign import, and ignore their local films, or just don't make enough films.

The ideal situation is somewhere in between, and it varies according to the quantity and quality of the domestic production. A country making good films should maintain a reasonable domestic share, possibly over 50%. In countries where local production is absent or of bad quality, a level under 50% is more understandable... although reaching 20 or 10% is dangerous for the sustainability of a local culture because it becomes substituted by American values instead.

As for the European market, no it's not easier. Eu is pretty much a territorialised market because of the language barrier. Just like Tamil and Urdu movie fans don't mix.
EU is an economic club, not a cultural identity unified by either one common language or one common nationality/culture. Except rare commercially successful movies that might be dubbed/subtitled in other languages, the entire production of neighbour countries remains invisible and unknown all year long... restricted to festival circuits and arthouses. There is no penetration of paneuropean culture at a commercial level, for the mass audience. See this study from 2005 (PDF) for the cultural diversity in each specific EU member.

HarryTuttle a dit…

Graphs updated : now with Hollywood share (when available)
+ New graph added.

Just Another Film Buff a dit…

Aha, it's perfect...

HarryTuttle a dit…

4th Graph (1985-2008 Time series) updated : data for France added