Movie box office falls after subsidy cuts
The country’s box office dropped 4.6 percent in the second quarter of 2016 due to a subsidy reduction, according to statistics from the National Film Development Funds Management Committee. This compared with a record $6.6 billion box office for the same period last year.
The box office decline, the first in half a decade, has weighed down the stock performance of the major listed film companies.
Moviegoers can usually buy film tickets at a discount, and producers will subsidize the remainder of the full price, which can be regarded as a promotional activity. However, if there is no real demand to see the film but producers buy the tickets in advance, this is considered illegal.
“After the subsidy decreases, the audience will not buy as many tickets as they did before. This will show their real consuming capacity. In fact, the ticket price may be a little bit higher for them,” said Wang Changtian, CEO of Enlight Media Co Ltd, one of China’s top film companies.