Local films dominate the independent sector at the Italian box office.

Admissions in Italy dipped by 2% in the first six months of 2009 to 50 million compared to the same period in 2008. There was also a 1.4% drop in box-office gross year on year for the same period. US studio films accounted for 65.2% of the market, with Italian films snagging 24.5%.

The local sector was dominated by wide-release blockbusters such as Filmauro’s Natale A Rio, Medusa’s Il Cosmo Sul Como and Filmauro’s Italians.

However, as in 2008, smaller local titles on a more limited release also fared well, including Universal Pictures Italia’s political comedy Diverso Da Chi? ($4.5m). The highest-grossing non-Italian, non-studio film in Italy in the first six months of the year was Bim Distribuzione’s Swedish thriller The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, which took $4.6m.

Local titles look set to dominate the second half of 2009. They include Giuseppe Tornatore’s Venice opener Baaria, which will be released by Medusa, Michele Placido’s drama Il Grande Sogno, also in Venice and also from Medusa, and Lucky Red’s La Prima Linea, a controversial thriller which has its world premiere at Toronto.


  Title (origin) Distributor Box-office gross
1Natale A Rio (It) Filmauro $35.1m
2Il Cosmo Sul Como (It) Medusa $18.7m
3Italians (It)Filmauro $17.3m
4Ex (It) 01 Distribution$15.1m
5La Matassa (It) Medusa $10.7m
 * Jan-June 2009