Screenings drop year-on-year but receipts for exporters increase; Pierre Pinaud’s On Air [pictured] was the most viewed film.

The third edition of the online film festival — which ran Jan 17-Feb 17 this year, generated some 750,000 screenings against 1.3m in 2012, co-organisers Unifrance have revealed.

The festival line-up featuring a selection of recent French features and shorts was available on the dedicated site as well as on 20 partner platforms.

Unifrance said the drop in viewings was due solely to less hits from China following a change in management at Chinese partner Youku which had resulted in less visibility for the festival on the platform this year.

China remained nonetheless the leading country in terms of viewings – with 375,000 screenings versus 1m in 2012. Other key viewing territories were Poland (120,000), Russia (61,000), Mexico (41,000) and Brazil (39,000).

Unifrance said that while overall screenings were down, paid for viewings had tripled to 38,000 in the pay-on-demand territories. The festival is free to view in China, Latin America, Russia and Poland.

It added that the increase in receipts was due in large part to increased partnerships with pay-on-demand platforms including iTunes in 50 territories, GoodMovies in Germany, Curzon on Demand in the UK and Vudu in the US.

The most viewed films Pierre Pinaud’s Karin Viard-starring tragicomedy On Air (85,242), Guillaume Brac’s short A World Without Women (83,830), Jean-Marc Moutout’s anti-capitalist tale Early One Morning (57,523), Franck Dion’s short Edmond was a Donkey (52,047) and Thierry Binisti’s Middle East drama A Bottle in the Gaza Sea (49,354).

The festival ran four competitions: a Public Prize, the International Directors Prize, an International Press Prize and the Social Networks Award.

Binisti’s A Bottle in the Gaza Sea won the Public Prize, based on some 30,000 votes.

The International Directors Prize, decided by Emanuele Crialese, Lucrecia Martel, Wang Xiaoshuai and Michel Hazanavicius, went to Christian Rouaud’s documentary Leader-Sheep.

The Press Prize – awarded by critics from publications such as the UK’s Sight and Sound and Spain’s La Vanguardia – went to Moussa Touré’s The Pirogue.

On Air and Yann Le Quellec’s short Beauty and the Beat shared the Social Networks Prize.

The next edition of will run Jan 17-Feb 17, 2014.