Spain's Alta Films may have to shut down 180 cinemas

Crisis-hit sector offered glimmer of hope by rising ticket sales

18 April, 15:33

    (ANSAmed) - MADRID, APRIL 18 - The crisis bringing Spain to its knees has not spared its cinemas. Alta Film, the largest film distribution and cinema management company in the country, may have to close 180 of the 200 cinemas it owns in the peninsula as well as its film marketing division, Alta Films chief and head of the Spanish Academy of Film Arts and Sciences, Gonzalez Macho, said. The economic recession in general and the crisis specifically in the world of Spanish cinema may speed up the shutting down of cinema halls throughout many Spanish cities.

    The producer said that the troubling situation his chain finds itself in had been aggravated by the lack of support from the public television TVE, a steep increase in VAT on cultural products and services from 8% to 21%, and the current economic crisis. However, ticket sales offer a glimmer of hope: in the first quarter of 2013, over 3 million tickets were sold, equal to 37.6% more than the same period in 2012 - despite there being 25% fewer Spanish films than the previous year, according to Rentrak Espana figures. (ANSAmed).

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