Figures published by the BFI show that films made in the UK grossed $9.4 billion worldwide, achieving the highest market share ever of the global box office* with 26%, and an increase of 13% on 2014.
- Independent UK films grossed $1.1 billion worldwide, a 2.8% share of the global box office, led by Paddington (2014), Shaun the Sheep Movie (2015) and The Imitation Game (2014), the second highest level since 2002*.
- Paddington is the UK’s biggest independent film export taking $112 million**.
- The UK-made Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) is the highest performing film earning $1.951 billion worldwide.
UK-made films which contributed to the record-breaking box office and market share results range from the studio blockbusters Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015) to independent UK films led by Paddington and including Shaun the Sheep Movie, The Imitation Game and Brooklyn (2015). Independent UK films broke the £1 billion box office market for the second year running, and accounted for a 2.8% share of the worldwide box office, the second highest share since 2002*.
Amanda Nevill, CEO of the BFI, said,
“The worldwide box office numbers once again underline the vital role played by our fantastic talent, crews and production facilities in making films that are seen by audiences worldwide.”
In what was a record-breaking year for UK-made films. Paddington grossed $112 million, generated mostly in the USA and Canada. When added to revenues from its release in other countries in 2014, the film has achieved a combined worldwide box office revenue of $249 million. Hot on the tail of Paddington is another family film, Aardman Animation’s Shaun the Sheep Movie, which earned $103 million, followed by The Imitation Game, which grossed $102 million worldwide. More recent releases such as Brooklyn grossed $45 million and Legend (2015) $39 million. The top 10 independent UK films grossed $679 million worldwide.
Internationally, the UK’s box office share combined across studio and independent films varied from continent to continent and country to country, from 32% in Russia to 21% in France, 24% in six Latin American territories, 18% in the six Asian territories and 33% and 39% in Australia and New Zealand respectively.
For UK independent films only, the market share in the USA and Canada is 3.2%. In Europe the market share ranges from 6.6% in Portugal, 5.5% in the Netherlands, 3.4% in Germany, 3.1% in France to 2.4% in Russia. Asia’s average includes 2.1% in South Korea, 2.0% in Hong Kong and 1.5% in Malaysia. China, an emerging market for UK-made films, has a limit on the number of foreign film slots and has remained at a consistent market share of 0.6%. Across the Latin American countries analysed, UK independent films had a 1.3% market share. Oceania has two of the strongest markets for UK independent films – Australia with 6.5%, and New Zealand, with 9.2%, has the highest market share of any of the territories analysed.
* Highest share since the reporting period started in 2002.
** Paddington was released in different countries in 2014 and 2015. The film’s lifetime gross is $249 million.