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» Report 2008
Chapter 7 - The Market Quote
Major, mini-major and indie
Considering the nationality of the principle groups present in the table, the incidence of their activity (which covers 99.43% for 2007 and 99.16% for 2008 of the general revenue from distribution) and the corporate structure of a large number of them – with vertical integration which results in them taking the revenue from production and business – through the data of CINETEL, for example, it is possible to trace a profound segmentation of the demand market.
This involves an individuation of the three principle categories of operator which can be classified as follows:
  • Major : international holdings such as Warner Bros., Universal-UIP, 20th Century Fox, Walt Disney and Sony, plus Eagle Pictures which, by now, is included for homogeneity.
  • Mini Major : the national groups Rai-01 Distribution and Medusa-Mediaset with, for coherence, Filmauro, which is also vertically integrated;
  • Indie : independent Italian companies of medium to small scale, however, with greater work intensity and continuity, in other words, the other nine companies which are included in the preceding classification and to which the data in the table below refers.
In a hypothetical assignment of parts it would be possible to state that the first entry belongs to the lead role actors, the second to important second actors and the third entry belongs to extras.

Source for elaboration: “Il cinema in numbers” report – calendar year 2007 and 2008 – edited by the Ufficio studi/CED of ANICA (Associazione nazionale industrie cinematografiche audiovisive e multimediale) on CINETEL data – The sum of percentage quotas out of total takings are not equal to 100% as they only refer to the first 18 distribution companies on the national market, whose incidence is equal to 99.17% for 2007 and to 99.16% for 2008.

The availability of reports on the takings obtained by distribution companies on the basis of CINETEL data starts at 2006 and, therefore, it is not possible to reconstruct a time series from a sufficiently large arc of time. Also if it is noted, for example, that between 2000 and 2005 American production, on average, offered 44% of new films in cinemas as opposed to 26% from Italian studios, and 30% from all other nations, causing, in any case, 60% of the takings, in comparison to 24% from Italian titles and 16% from all other nations.
Even the limited comparison of the three year period 2006-2008 seems to signal – as is confirmed by the same comparison of the final balances of the last two periods – a potential reduction in the hegemony of the foreign majors, whilst the incidence of the national mini-majors demonstrate a stable trend. This shows that the slight displacements in action primarily influence the ‘indie’, the independent Italian film companies of medium to small scale.
As a cross-check of such indications it is possible to take, as a parameter, the total incidence of the first ten companies uniting the activity of the six international majors and the three mini-majors to that of the largest – in this case Lucky Red – of the indies, all vertically (01 Distribution aside) integrated.  Furthermore, it is precisely on the cumulative quota of the classes of company constituted by the ‘top ten’ that, fundamentally, one makes commensurate the equilibrium of a market and the impact of the sector leaders (also to determine the formation of possible regimes of oligopolies as opposed to monopolies or oligopsonies).
It emerges that this informal and hypothetical G10 of cinema distribution has launched 537 films in 2007 and 534 in 2008 and has passed from 581.9 million euro in cinema takings to 539.7 million and, in the two year period, has seen its extremely elevated market quota reduced from 94.32% to 90.91%. In order to evaluate, in concrete terms, the possible consistency of such evolution at the diverse levels of the sector necessarily requires, however, more information. 


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