The Italian film industry is complaining that too many local pictures are being released in an extremely short period of time, effectively damaging each film's prospects at the box office.

According to Agis, Italy's national entertainment organisation, around 30 local pictures are being released between September and end of November.

These include such highly anticipated titles as Bernardo Bertolucci's The Dreamers, Ermanno Olmi's Cantando Dietro I Paraventi, Paolo Virzi's Caterina Va In Citta and Ettore Scola's Gente Di Roma.

"The problem is that Italian films, and in particular those of high quality, continue to be released between September and November and January and March, as if the rest of the year didn't exist," Domenico Dinoia, head of Italy's arthouse cinemas federation (FICE) said in an interview with Italian trade Il Giornale dello Spettacolo.

"You can't be surprised then about the huge number of local titles that literally don't make a lira," he added.