Traditionally one of the strongest performing territories in Europe, Ireland is experiencing a marginal decline in year-on-year box office returns, according to new figures from Carlton Screen.

The Republic of Ireland box office has dropped 1.2% to date on last year, however this masks a year-on-year rise of 24.5% in March. The March spike - the only month showing growth on last year - marks the phenomenal success in Ireland of Universal's In Bruges, bolstered by their Step Up 2 the Streets and Fox's 27 Dresses.

Returns from Northern Ireland are more disappointing with a drop of 2.9% on last year's figures to the end of May. Carlton Screen's figures cite April and May as the worst months to date on both parts of the island showing falls of 10.6% and 15.1% respectively in the Republic, and 21.4% and 18.3% respectively in Northern Ireland.

Figures for June show should strong growth on last year with the latest Indiana Jones outing claiming the year's highest grossing title crown from In Bruges, and being pushed hard if not overtaken by Entertainment's Sex and the City which was released at far fewer sites.