Chinese Box Office Sales Flat in 2016

Chinese box office receipts hit a brick wall in 2016. The most amusing part of the story is one of the excuses offered: yuan depreciation.

SCMP: How bubble burst on China’s cinema industry ‘boom’
Box office sales totalled more than 1 billion yuan during Christmas week, helping 2016’s takings reach 44.5 billion yuan as of December 23, and surpass last year’s Christmas week total of 44 billion yuan. Analysts anticipated that the box office revenues in 2016 would reach about 45 billion yuan, according to Sina Entertainment News.

Tong Gang, deputy head of the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, which oversees the film industry, blamed the decline on the yuan’s depreciation, the Xinhua news agency reported.
The more likely explanation is the crack down on subsidies:
“As big as the slump in China’s box office sales seems, this is actually the real situation of the Chinese film industry,” Wang said.

“I said in 2015 that the bubble would burst if we deducted all the ‘ticket subsidies’.
Another issue is quality:
Film administration body chief Zhang Hongsen said the quality and standard of Chinese films could not meet the rising demand of domestic audiences and the industry should “promote the spirit of craftsmanship”, Xinhua reported.

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