Hollywood at home: local vs. US movie popularity around the world
I still mourn the day that the yearly Bond movie shifted from Christmas day to Boxing Day, although it would never stop me watching after a hefty lunch. But what will you be watching this holiday season: local movies or Hollywood blockbusters? US movies may be ubiquitous, but interest in them most certainly is not, with local fare dominating in a number of countries. But if you're trying to sell movies internationally, it's not as simple as an either/or. There are markets that love local and love US too, while others shy away from US produced movies in general. The chart shows interest in local movies (blue bar showing % of population who often watch local) and the ratio of Hollywood movie viewing to local movie viewing (the higher the ratio [orange line] the more popular are US movies relative to local). Challenging language barriers and a strong local movie heritage are the drivers for local interest in markets like China, India, and Turkey. But these markets also have the highest levels of interest in US movies, with the low ratio driven by the magnitude of local viewing. Surprisingly, the UK has a strong local movie culture and average interest in Hollywood output, also leading to a relatively low ratio. Hollywood's crown is unassailable in South Africa, Argentina, Australia, Canada, Brazil and Mexico and strong in Spain, the Netherlands and Sweden. Most of the other markets have roughly equal interest levels for local films vs. Hollywood movies, with a ratio knocking around one. Adapting this to a sales and production strategy, markets like China, Turkey and India should be ripe for US-local movie co-production, countries like Argentina, Australia and Canada will always be happy with what Hollywood has to offer off the shelf; and much of the rest of Europe will take what Hollywood has, but could benefit from an injection of local talent, settings or story lines to tip the scales towards US output.