According to figures made available by the local National Film Center, domestic cinema seems to be making a comeback in Bulgaria: earnings more than doubled in 2016 when compared to 2015. The admissions for domestic releases increased from 94,804 in 2015 to 177,647 last year (a rise of 87.3%), while earnings shot up from €302,611 in 2015 to €610,394 in 2016 (up 101.7%).
The total number of admissions in 2016 was 5,532,490, a very small decrease from 2015 (5,335,073). Total earnings reached €24.7 million, with a 5.1% increase on the previous year (€23.5 million). The total number of features released in Bulgaria in 2016 amounted to 330, up slightly on the previous year (322). The number of domestic releases also increased from 21 to 25. The average ticket price rose slightly from €4.40 to €4.48.
Mihaela Komitova’s debut feature, “The 11th Grade“, an endearing high-school drama, was the most popular domestic release of the year, with almost 98,000 admissions. Ivaylo Hristov’s black-and-white coming-of-age comedy Losers, the winner of several international awards, followed with 25,500 admissions. The domestic top three is completed by Ivaylo Penchev’s ensemble comedy Holiday Makers, which took over 18,000 admissions.
As for foreign films, the list of popular releases suggests that Bulgarians are huge fans of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story“ is the only live-action feature in the top five, behind „Ice Age: Collision Course“, „The Secret Life of Pets“, „Zootopia“ and „The Angry Birds Movie“.