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It is an unmissable event for lovers of the seventh art. From Sunday July 3 to Wednesday July 6, the Fête du Cinéma returns to cinemas throughout France to offer four days of screenings at the single price of four euros (not including supplements for 3D films, special screenings and additional services ).
The opportunity to stock up on feature films at a low price, at a time when inflation is affecting the behavior of the French eager to preserve their purchasing power.
“There is no reason not to go” to the cinema
After a 2020 edition canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a 2021 edition where the use of a mask was mandatory, the 2022 Film Festival aims to seduce viewers to increase attendance. The audience must “Take advantage of these four days to go back to the cinemas, which are the most beautiful place in the world to see a movie, laugh, cry or learn.”Trusted West of France Richard Patry, president of the National Federation of French Cinemas (FNCF), which organizes the event. Our goal is to really turn heads and make an effort to tell people, “For four days, you have no reason not to go. » »
In addition to big hits like Top Gun: Maverick by Joseph Kosinsky Jurassic World: The World After by Colin Trevorrow buzz the lightning by Angus MacLane or Elvis by Baz Luhrmann, the public will be able to discover Incredible but true by Quentin Dupieux decision to leave by Park Chan-wook Irreducible by and with Jérôme Commandeur, black notebooks in two parts with Ronit Elkabetz or even the crossing de Varante Soudjian… A wide range of environments and themes that the event created in 1985 allows to open to the widest public, in the context of a contest with Allociné and Virgin Radio that allows winning a year of cinema and other lots for moviegoers.
A drop in attendance of about a third.
Will this call to theaters be massively followed? Answer Wednesday night. Meanwhile, the sector is experiencing a situation “slow” , as Richard Patry acknowledges. According to the latest estimates from the National Film Center (CNC), attendance at the cinema reached 11.17 million viewers in May 2022, a level lower than that registered in May 2019 (-27.7%), and the average of the months of May in 2017-2019 (-21.0%). Since the beginning of the year, the rooms have added 62.09 million admissions, 32.9% less than in the same period of 2019, the CNC specifies on its site.
Disaffection is strong. According to a study published in May 2022, 48% of French people say they have returned less or not at all to the cinema since the reopening of theaters on May 19, 2021. A decrease in attendance linked to a combination of factors. some cyclical and others more structural. Five main reasons are given: the loss of the habit of going to the cinema (for 38% of them), the perception of the ticket price being too high (for 36%), the use of a mask (for 33%) , the preference for watching films in other media (for 26%) and the lack of interest in the films that are offered (for 23%), with other motivations such as news that causes anxiety or the preference for other activities being less important.
“Of course, the figures (in terms of attendance) worry us”, emphasizes Richard Patry. “However, in the face of this downturn, we reassure ourselves by looking at others. In Spain they are less than 50%, in Italy they are less than 70%, Germany and England are also far behind. France is the best country in Europe along with Holland where the cinema has been restarted in these conditions. »
Several “reasons for hope”
” Optimistic “the president of the FNCF advances several “reasons for hope” What “the quality of cinemas” with massive reinvestments. Furthermore, none of the 2,028 French cinemas offering 6,193 screens as of December 31, 2021 “it has not closed its doors in France, thanks to state aid, since the Covid-19 crisis” ; the Youth Culture Pass is “a very big success for theaters, with 1.5 million tickets sold by the end of 2021” Y french operators, “movie buffs” is it so “overinvested in their profession ».
In autumn, the National Federation of French Cinemas must launch a major communication campaign with the Ministry of Culture. “promote theaters and movies because one does not go without the other”. What will drive the number of entries? Richard Patrick, who “believe in movies” despite competition from platforms like Netflix, it has “170, 175 million tickets sold at the end of the year in France” versus “213 million in 2019, 65 million in 2020 and 95 million in 2021”. Add to the address of those who consider the price of tickets too high: “You have to go to the cinema looking for ways to pay less, like the subscription card, and play your role as a consumer. »