Film in cinemas in the Nordic region

NEWS | 5 October 2017

Icelanders go to the cinema more often than other Nordic people, and domestic films are popular in all Nordic countries. But the shares of women and men in Nordic films are still unbalanced. These are some of the key figures presented in a compilation of Nordic film and cinema statistics.

The Nordic Agency for Cultural Policy Analysis (Kulturanalys Norden) has published key data on cinemas, films and revenues on the Nordic markets, as well as data on gender equality regarding Nordic films. The publication is the first in a pocket series aimed at presenting Nordic cultural statistics.

Stability on the cinema market
The publication shows that the number of cinema admissions in the Nordic region remained stable during the period 2005 to 2016. But some are more avid cinemagoers than others: Icelanders go to the cinema most often, while Faroe Islanders are the ones who  go to the cinema the most rarely.

The number of cinemas, screens and seats also remained relatively unchanged from 2010 to 2016. In Sweden, however, the number of cinemas and screens decreased somewhat, and in Denmark the number of screens rose.

Domestic productions in the top
Based on tickets sold, North American films took the major market shares of cinema releases in the Nordic region in 2016. By contrast, the most viewed film in each Nordic country, respectively, was a domestic production.

Still no gender equality
The shares of men and women in key positions – directors, producers, scriptwriters – or in lead roles in domestic films fall almost exclusively outside the range of 40 to 60 per cent, which is often used as an indicator of gender equality. The data refer to domestically funded or premiered feature films in the Nordic region. The exception was the proportion of women directors and scriptwriters in Sweden and the number of women producers in Iceland.

Recommendations for future statistics
Kulturanalys Norden concludes that Nordic film statistics sometimes differ in terms of scope and content as well as availability, and thus are not always directly comparable. And in the publication, Kulturanalys Norden presents recommendations for future statistics, in order to better compare the Nordic countries.

One of the proposals is that the Nordic countries together should define and make available comparable gender equality data for all films shown in the Nordic region (primarily domestic productions), since the current statistics differ in both design and availability.

Download the publication (tables in English) and the English summary here


About the Nordic Agency for Cultural Policy Analysis: The agency is tasked with developing statistics and knowledge bases that are useful to decision-makers wishing to develop Nordic cultural policy and strengthen Nordic cultural life. It was initiated by the Nordic Council of Ministers, and is located at the Swedish Agency for Cultural Policy Analysis (Myndigheten för Kulturanalys). Read more background information.



MORE STATISTICS: Find organisations providing film and cinema statistics at national, Nordic and European levels in Nordicom’s database of statistical sources.