CJ Cinema News Digest – Tuesday 15 August 2017

By and Patrick von Sychowski | August 15, 2017 3:08 am PDT

Paris indie cinema pre-pay card, Helios profits, CGV weak local BO, Inox to grow to +500 screens, UK/US cinema films released annually, tech of S.African cinemas, N.Ireland Cinema Day, new CEO for Nordisk, Indian censor fired, Ozark Henry in Auro 11.1, coconut water in cinemas and 9 things you only know if you worked at a cinema.

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France – 24 independent cinemas in Paris have launch a joint pre-pay card to compete with the ‘unlimited’ cards from multiplexes. The Cine Carte CIP offers savings of up to 50% with a five ticket card for 30 euro being valid six months or a nine admissions 48 euro card valid nine months, for up to two people for each screening. It is estimated that the three cinema majors in Paris (UGC, Pathé and MK2) have a market share of 88.6%, leaving just 11.4% to the Paris Independent Cinemas (CIP). Despite this CIP cinemas show 100 films per week and have 250 screenings per day. BFMTV (FR) – 11 August 2017

Helios kino

Poland – Helios’ parent company Agora saw a profit in Q2, mainly on the back of growing cinema attendance and improving advertising. Profits were PLZ 0.33 million (USD 90,000 $), compared to a loss of PLZ 5.07 million (USD $1.4 million) the same time last year. Ticket sale were over 2.3 million, growing 35% up on Q2 in 2016 and representing a 39.7% increase in revenue. Overall cinema attendance in Poland grew 33.4% to 11.2 million tickets sold. Helios operates in 42 sites and has two new sites opening this year. Money.pl (PL) – 11 August 2017

CGV cinema in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. (photo: Patrick von Sychowski / Celluloid Junkie)

CGV cinema in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. (photo: Patrick von Sychowski / Celluloid Junkie)

Korea (Republic of, South) – CGV expects Q3 to be weak, mainly due to a weak domestic film slate, while overseas expansion (mainly Turkey and Vietnam) will account for the majority of growth. China is seen as slowing down, though “Wolf Warriors 2” will help. Profits from domestic operations were KRW 71.6 billion (USD $63.18 million) in 2015 and KRW 62 billion (USD $50 million) in 2016, but is expected to reach just KRW 20 billion (USD $20 million) this year. Business Post (KR) – 11 August 2017

Inox Laserplex in Mumbai. (photo: Patrick von Sychowski / Celluloid Junkie)

Inox Laserplex in Mumbai. (photo: Patrick von Sychowski / Celluloid Junkie)

India – Inox plans to invest INR 100 crore (USD $15.6 million) this financial year to open 39 new screen and take its count to over 500. It currently has 475 screens in 58 cities.“Post March 2018, we have already tied up in terms of signed agreement for another 79 properties with 461 screens and 85,955 seats. Once this pipeline is implemented, we will have 207 properties, 976 screens, 2,11,927 seats,” Alok Tandon CEO, Inox Leisure told analysts during a conference call. India.com – 15 August 2017

Studio and non-studio cinema releases in US (graph: Stephen Follows)

Studio and non-studio cinema releases in US (graph: Stephen Follows)

UK – Stephen Follows asks ‘How many films are released each year’ in the UK and US. The numbers have been going steadily up in both countries. The only exception is the number of Hollywood studios releases, which is down 27% in the last decade. Both the BFI and UKCA association (and others) agree that over 800 releases per year in UK cinemas is too much and that films crowd each other out.  Stephen Follows – 14 August 2017

NuMetro cinema. (photo: Business Live)

NuMetro cinema. (photo: Business Live)

South Africa – A look at how Ster-Kinekor and Nu Metro are embracing the latest technology trends, including self-service ticketing, IMAX, 4DX and new audio formats. “Altogether, 106 films were released in SA. The NFVF says 23 were in 3D, 4DX and IMAX formats — up from 18 in 2016. Their earnings accounted for 65% of the box office revenues, up from 54% in the year-earlier period.” But box office is down 3% for this first six-month period. BusinessLive – 11 August 2017

Cinema Day is back in NI.

Cinema Day is back in NI, courtesy of Film Hub NI

UK (Northern Ireland) – Cinema Day is back after a break of several years. On Monday 28 August 22 participating cinemas will screen films special screenings and events with reduced or free admission. The event is organised by Film Hub NI, part of the BFI Film Audience Network. BelfastLive – 12 August 2017

People

John Tønnes & Asger Flygare Bech-Thomsen. (photo: Danske Biografer)

John Tønnes & Asger Flygare Bech-Thomsen. (photo: Danske Biografer)

Denmark – Nordisk Film cinemas is getting a new CEO, with John A. Tønnes leaving to head up bakery/restaurant chain Lagkagehuset, with current COO  Asger Flygare Bech-Thomsen taking over the top job. 1 September is the date for the switch. The chain has 43 cinemas in Denmark and Norway, having expanded significantly in Norway and also announced plans to grow in Sweden. Danske Biografer (DK) – 14 August 2017

India chief censor

India – The Chief Censor of the Central Board of Film Certification has been sacked. Film music lyricist and ad-man Prasoon Joshi will replace Pahlaj Nihalani, whose bizarre decisions caused outrage and head scratching. “He ordered cuts to the love scenes in James Bond film “Spectre,” the banning of “Lipstick under My Burkha” on the grounds that the film about female sexuality was “lady-oriented” and might offend Muslims.” Most of his decisions were later reversed by courts. Variety – 11 August 2017

Event Cinema

Belgium – Artist Ozark Henry (alias Piet Goddaer) is launching his new album with a special release of his album at a Kinepolis cinema in Antwerp on 17 August. The recording has been re-mastered in 11.1 Auro and Brightfish, together with Sony (Music) and Volvo, are creating the eventevent out of that. Above is a talk he gave last year on immersive sound. Brightfish – 10 August 2017

Concessions / F&B

Fish coconut

India – Cinemas in the state of Mysuru are being asked to sell fresh coconuts for drinking to help farmers. Cinemas are not being asked to replace soft drinks, says Deputy Commissioner of Mysuru D. Randeep, but, “Theatre owners will be asked to make available space on the premises for sale of tender coconut also as an option.” Cinema owners are less than enthusiastic, saying it will make cinema unhygienic. The Hindu – 12 August 2017

Finally

Tango Ice Blast - doesn't always work.(photo: @urbanbbl / Instagram)

Tango Ice Blast – doesn’t always work.(photo: @urbanbbl / Instagram)

UK – It is a list which makes a re-apperance every so often with a few variation, but we still like running it. ‘Nine things you only know if you worked at a cinema’. Patrons making a mess, leaving strange (and disgusting) things behind and children vomiting is nothing new. Then there is:

4. Staff do not have the power to magically fix the Ice Blast machine

Ice Blasts are great, everyone loves them. The machines however, are not so great.

When the cinema is particularly busy and the Ice Blast machine is out of order, staff cannot fix it no matter how many times customers ask.

Night vision goggles usually catch people picking their nose rather than cam cording films illegally. And apparently staff haven’t seen every single film showing in the multiplex, much to some patrons’ surprise. Essex Live – 9 August 2017

Patrick von Sychowski
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Patrick von Sychowski

Patrick was a Senior Analyst at Screen Digest, went on to launch the digital cinema operations of Unique and Deluxe Europe, then digitised Bollywood at Adlabs/RMW, and now writes, consults and appears on panels about cinema all over the world.
Patrick von Sychowski
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