FILM - Industry briefs

  • 2008-01-09
November 19: Movie ticket sales in Lithuania soared this year, with ticket revenue jumping to 28.6 million litas (8.28 million euros) in the Jan. - Oct. period, 48 percent more than during the same period last year, the Cinema Industry Association reported. The number of moviegoers soared by 42.8 percent, year-on-year, to almost 2.66 million.

The Simpsons Movie topped the box office with a haul of 2.24 million litas and 219,000 viewers in that 10-month period. Two other animated films, Shrek the Third and Ratatouille, came in second and third respectively. Last year Lithuania set the EU record for the largest increase in cinema attendance, with a 98.3 percent rise over 2005 figures.

August 17: The Estonian newspaper publisher Eesti Paevaleht obtained rights to the Latvian film Rigas Sargi ("Defenders of Riga") and is planning to show it on television and in cinemas.

Aavo Kokk, executive publisher of Eesti Paevaleht, told BNS that Paevaleht's plans included publishing a book on the Latvian War of Independence and Estonians' role in battles on Latvian soil, to be accompanied by a DVD copy of the film. "We do not know the film world very well, but we've helped the producers of quite many Estonian films with marketing," he said. Kokk said Eesti Paevaleht was not planning to enter the film distribution business. "But if "Defenders of Riga" proves a success, we'll definitely go on and make another try," he said.

June 15: A Lithuanian film by Arunas Matelis titled Before Flying Back to Earth placed first on the list of the top 50 documentaries of all times as published on the Internet site List of the Best.

The Lithuanian movie director's film bested Bob Dylan - No Direction Home by Martin Scorsese, which placed second. Dziga Vertov's experimental Man with Camera (1929) placed 13th and this year's Oscar laureate An Inconvenient Truth by Davis Guggenheim and Al Gore took 23rd place. The List of the Best is made on the basis of the film ratings by visitors to the world's largest movie database IDMb. Before Flying Back to Earth, which tells a story of children in the oncology ward and lessons in love, faith and strength that are taught at the hospital, is probably the most-viewed Lithuanian movie in the world.