High production costs and limited exhibition affect the cinema

It is necessary to invest in IMCINE to move the industry forward, proposes Rigoberto Castañeda Alcántara, filmmaker.

The film industry in Mexico is experiencing an unprecedented stage, since after almost a year of confinement it registers a decrease in the number of theaters, the reduction in ticket sales due to the low attendance of the public and the high production costs when extreme sanitary measures.

According to figures from the National Chamber of the Cinematographic Industry (CANACINE), as a result of the pandemic, production was reduced practically by half and the impact was greater in movie theaters, which went from obtaining revenues of 19.6 billion pesos in 2019, to 3.6 billion in 2020. This means a drop of 81.3 percent, explained Violeta Rodríguez del Villar, a researcher at the Institute for Economic Research (IIEc) of the UNAM.

During the virtual media conference “Repercussions of the pandemic in the film industry,” he added that the above is due, almost entirely, to the drop in ticket sales. The low attendance to this show and to other cultural sectors is also due to the decrease in family income.

From March to December 2020, the absence of the public in movie theaters reached 95 percent and, according to a survey by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography, only 36 percent attended, while 64 did not.

For Francisco Peredo Castro, academic from the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences (FCPyS), the situation in this industry means that “value chains are broken when the pandemic impacts the possibility of cinema being consumed, and it means that The processes of socialization and acculturation that are associated with cinema are breaking down ”.

There are diverse communities of spectators, which attend the movie theater that today has strong competition with the platforms of streamingAlthough they show films, they do so on television, without the conditions of the immersion process that they present in these spaces.

Meanwhile, Rigoberto Castañeda Alcántara, academic of the National School of Cinematographic Arts of the UNAM and filmmaker, assured: at this moment the production costs are rising, because strict sanitation rules must be applied to avoid contagion, medical assistance and COVID supervisors , for example.

He proposed that the government inject greater economic resources into the Mexican Institute of Cinematography; while the guild creates new forms of production and distribution that take cinema, for example, to small towns and not only to cities.

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