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International statistics

21 January 2022 à 15:43

French films at the international box office: December 2021

December 2021 saw French cinema represented by over 230 films showing in theaters outside France and over 160 new releases, attracting 1.19 million spectators and generating €7.94 million in box office receipts.

Christmas with the Tuche and The Wolf and the Lion both registered more than 100,000 admissions in international theaters.
# Title Admissions Box Office Revenues (€) No. of Prints No. of Countries Total Admissions Total Revenues
1 Christmas with the Tuche 113,480 1,051,205 56 2 113,480 1,051,205
2 The Wolf and the Lion 112,653 508,720 417 10 521,261 2,653,697
3 Around the World in 80 Days 83,061 387,005 347 7 706,698 3,340,235
4 Titane 75,347 447,630 391 18 413,353 2,994,394
5 Spread Your Wings 74,891 221,471 178 2 449,941 2,253,375
6 Benedetta 73,664 556,602 586 17 201,071 1,566,659
7 Délicieux 71,338 688,163 228 8 181,447 1,415,702
8 Aline, the Voice of Love 59,595 470,785 391 11 157,587 1,259,834
9 Eiffel 50,446 298,385 363 13 312,165 2,241,739
10 Annette 40,572 281,775 323 22 321,091 1,974,683
11 Pil 18,264 52,952 43 4 94,035 311,072
12 The Rose Maker 17,480 112,269 116 6 164,270 1,278,434
13 Spoiled Brats 16,957 72,436 186 2 44,750 347,976
14 Petite Maman 16,842 132,272 138 8 119,333 866,014
15 Lost Illusions 15,784 106,292 71 2 33,113 296,510
16 Amelie 14,813 101,940 84 4 22,420,085 133,707,687
17 Price of Parenting 14,625 142,840 31 2 14,625 142,840
18 Family Swap 14,527 64,835 27 2 197,407 1,174,030
19 The Velvet Queen 14,212 187,173 14 2 14,212 187,173
20 Serial Bad Weddings 2 13,692 47,022 81 3 3,766,852 284,28,447

Just as the international box office revenues and new film launches were picking up slowly but surely, the arrival of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 and its rapid spread across the globe delivered another hard blow to the movie sector. Once again, the momentum of a reinvigorated industry has been stalled, amid a renewed sense of uncertainty. Unlike previous waves of Covid-19, this time the closure of movie theaters was not a decision imposed de facto: while theaters were effectively shut down in December 2021 (in Canada, Denmark, The Netherlands, and Slovakia, among other countries), the majority of governments made the choice to leave theaters open with tightened access restrictions (such as the requirement of a vaccination pass, FFP2 mask, prohibition of the sale of snack food, or the reintroduction of theater capacity limitations). This has inevitably led to a slump in admissions, with spectators also giving priority to a handful of titles, such as the latest installment of Spider-Man (Sony), thus further widening the gap between results for the various titles on offer. As a result, and considering that the peak of the pandemic has not yet been reached, a large number of film releases have been postponed, particularly for titles with strong commercial potential. The New Year has thus begun with a feeling of déjà vu.

However, despite these difficulties, French films maintained their position on foreign screens in December 2021, registering figures consistent with those of November 2021. While the top French title of the month, Christmas with the Tuche, garnered 113,000 spectators (low in comparison to the 326,000 admissions for the number 1 title of the previous month, The Wolf and the Lion), a larger number of titles this month registered over 50,000 admissions (9 versus 4 titles in November). Furthermore, 6 titles were shown in more than 10 territories (compared to 5 in November).

The Wolf and the LionThe Wolf and the Lion

Europe accounted for three quarters of ticket sales for French films in December, with Western Europe responsible for nearly 50% of this figure. All other geographic regions posted less than 100,000 admissions (although the figures for North America are just under this symbolic threshold) and a market share of under 10%. Poland was the leading market in terms of spectator numbers for French films in December 2021, recording 229,000 admissions, which is close to 1 in 5 of all admissions to French titles in this period. The other market to exceed 100,000 admissions was the combined territory of Belgium & Luxembourg (13.3% of the market overall). 3 out of the 4 titles that registered more than 50,000 admissions did so in Poland, while the other quarter did so in Belgium & Luxembourg.

 The openings of Tuche 4, Délicieux, and Aline, the Voice of Love brought the comedy and comedy/drama genres back to center stage: one third of foreign spectators to French films saw a film of these genres in December 2021. The next most successful genre was adventure films, credited with over 222,000 admissions, half of which are attributed to The Wolf and the Lion, as well as Spread Your Wings. Dramas and the biopic/war/history genres accounted for more than 10% of the market: Benedetta and Eiffel topped 50,000 admissions, while no dramas achieved this feat in December.

Film productions initiated by France generated 90% of all admissions to French films registered in December, with the top performances by two titles that sold over 100,000 tickets (Christmas with the Tuche and The Wolf and the Lion), followed by six other titles selling over 50,000 tickets. No minority-French productions attracted over 50,000 spectators: the standout title in December was The Worst Person in the World, seen by 46,000 moviegoers abroad. The results for this film, along with those of The Wolf and the Lion, ensured that foreign-language productions captured 20.6% of the market, which declined by more than half in the space of one month. On the other hand, films shot in French gained ground, accounting for close to 80% of the month's results.

 Given that sagas are highly popular with international audiences, it is no surprise that Christmas with the Tuche was eagerly awaited in France's French-speaking neighbors, particularly in Belgium. Even though the closure of Belgian theaters for a number of days impacted on the film's box office results, the public came out in force once venues reopened. 100,000 Belgian spectators have already been won over by the film (Alternative Films), which now ranks as the second most successful French film in this market in 2021, after Kaamelott (Belga Films – 122,000 admissions). Meanwhile, The Wolf and the Lion continues its triumphant run in other markets, currently tallying over 500,000 admissions worldwide, including 202,000 in Poland (Kino Swiat). Monolith Films launched Spread Your Wings and Around the World in 80 Days in Polish theaters, both of which reached the local Top 5: after just a few weeks on the screens, they put in the second and third best performances by a French production in Poland in 2021. Thanks to Titane (Altitude Film), majority-French productions shot in French returned to the Top 10 titles in Great Britain and Ireland, 15 months after the success of Les Misérables (Altitude Film – £178,000, 25,500 admissions). This Palme d’Or winner achieved its best opening in Europe in this market (£167,000, 24,000 admission). In Oceania, Palace Films kept up with tradition by offering audiences a French production on Boxing Day, with France represented in 2021 by Délicieux. This film currently boasts a running total of AUD$741,000 (including revenues from preview and festival screenings), representing around 52,000 admissions (NZ$262,000 and 10,000 admissions in New Zealand).

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This report is based on results recorded on January 12, 2022. Since our statistics for film releases are continuously being updated, the graphics generated automatically on our website will differ from the chart featured in this article.

Author : Andrea Sponchiado

Latest update : 10 February 2022 à 15:43 CET


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