The Swedish homeentertainment market significantly outperformed theatrical revenues in 2005,latest figures reveal.

Despite a strong finish inDecember, with a notable increase in admissions and box office, figuresreleased last week by the Swedish Film Institute show 2005 was the worst yearfor Swedish cinemas since 1999. Box office figures dropped 11.8% from $161.2m(SKR 1.27bn) to $142,1m (SKR 1.12bn) year-on-year, while admissions slipped12%, from 16.6 million tickets sold in 2004 to 14.6 million.

In December the box officehad a 17% increase in comparison with the same month the previous year. TheChronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, TheWitch And The Wardrobe dominated the holiday season and earned 28%($4.3m) of the total December box office.

Harry Potter And The Goblet of Fire lead the year as a whole with $7.6m, closely followed by Star Wars:Episode III - Revenge Of The Sith ($7.4m).

Dalecarlians (Masjavlar) was the mostpopular local film, coming in third with $6.2m. Although the number of Swedishfilms released increased with 32% (49 Swedish films were produced in 2005) offilms released produced locally, local market share slipped from 22.4% in 2004to 21.6% in 2005.

Top distributor of the yearwas Sandrew Metronome, which distributes Warner Brostitles such as Goblet Of Fire and CharlieAnd The Chocolate Factory. Sandrew Metronomeearned $25.2m from its 2005 slate. SF Film dominated the distribution of localfilms, earning 54% ($11m) of the box office for local films premiering in 2005.

The theatrical sector wasovershadowed by the Swedish DVD market,however, which continued to grow in 2005 having narrowly surpassed theatricalbusiness in 2004. According to the Association of Swedish Video Distributorsthe total wholesale turnover increased by 16.7%, rentals included, amounting to$195m. As in all territories the VHS format is on a clear decline in Sweden, slipping 55.2% in turnover from 2004 to 2005.