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China Calling

China Calling

Every Filmmaker, Story Teller, Producer and budding young Director needs to understand the Chinese film market. It is in a word hot. Across the country nearly 30 movie screens open each day, box office revenues are up over 50{5ca2eb384d09d98d15e1efd1e27b66aae779e3e721a4a8d35c0ac7b222cb3660} year over year and China, which is already the world’s 2nd largest film market, will one day overtake the US, the current global leader.

China’s movie box-office receipts continued their growth in the first half of this year with total revenue of $3.3 billion compared to $2.2 billion in the first half of 2014. If this pace continues China’s theatrical market will equal about two thirds of the American market. U.S. box office receipts last year were $10.3 billion but they’re on a decline.

Nearly $1.75 billion of this year’s box office receipts came from foreign movies while a sizable percentage of the remaining box office receipts were from Hong Kong films. This makes China extremely attractive to movie makers. But challenges remain. China currently limits the number of foreign films that can be screened to just 34 per year. This will change in 2017 as part of China’s agreements with the WTO but they’ll still limit the times of year when foreign films can be screened. This is all designed to boost the domestic industry. And that’s precisely the opening that smaller Production companies need. The solution to Chinese foreign film restrictions is to co-produce and create Chinese-Canadian or Chinese-UK films. Get the picture?

China is the new frontier for Filmmakers

China is the new frontier for Filmmakers

China has enjoyed a renaissance of sorts in recent years as the domestic film industry has expanded in the quality, style and genres of films produced. Additionally new sources of funding are coming from the country’s powerful online streaming media companies. All this means that China is looking to smart win-win deals with world-class Filmmakers to help keep up this momentum. So what are you waiting for? We’re not. And we think all Producers and Directors need to take China seriously.

We’ve been working on Chinese projects since 2000 and patiently growing our relationships and capabilities year over year. Cracking the Chinese market is a long term commitment but with these growth numbers and forward moving trajectory it’s worth the investment.