Worldwide box office revenues up 5% in 2008: MPAA

MUMBAI: The worldwide box office revenues increased by 5.2 per cent in 2008, reaching an all-time high of $28.1 billion. As per the Motion Pictures Association of Amercia’s (MPAA) annual box office report, domestic box office has surged 11 per cent in the first 10 weeks of 2009.

International box office reached another high of $18.3 billion, which was up seven per cent over the previous year and accounted for 65 per cent of the worldwide total. On the other hand, domestic box office (US and Canada) reached $9.8 billion, which was up 1.7 per cent over 2007 and accounted for 35 per cent of the worldwide total.

While admissions in the US and Canada were down slightly to 1.4 billion in 2008, they have remained on par with prior years, with the exception of 2002’s high of 1.6 billion admissions. Admissions were up seven per cent in the fourth quarter of 2008 and eight per cent in the first 10 weeks of 2009.

As per the report, average ticket prices in 2008 increased by about 30 cents to $7.18, which is a 4.4 per cent increase roughly comparable to the consumer price index increase. The number of films released in 2008 increased slightly from the previous year to 610 compared to 599 in 2007.

MPAA chairman and CEO Dan Glickman said, “When folks talk about how well the box office is doing, it’s nothing to apologize for. It’s not just in our interest, but the national interest to have constructive policies that protect intellectual property and that don’t give second-class citizenship to creative jobs, but rather encourage the economic growth we can deliver. Whether we build cars or make movies shouldn’t matter. What matters is getting folks back to work and reviving our economy.”

Glickman also emphasized the importance of continuing policies that keep international markets open.

“Now is not the time to build walls. It’s time to work toward solutions of broad, mutual benefit. Whether it is Indian films, UK films, French films, American films or the many others, it’s important culturally, diplomatically and economically that we strive toward openness and that we share our stories around the world, growing together rather than apart,” Glickman added.