07-10-2020

Lithuanian Film Centre Supports Cinemas and Film Distributors With 2.8m EUR for COVID Losses

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VILNIUS: The Lithuanian Film Centre granted support of 2.8 m EUR for cinemas and film distributors to compensate for losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In all, 18 cinemas, operating 71 screens in Lithuania, received 2.24 m EUR.

The largest amount - 200,000 EUR – went to Forum Cinemas. Multikino Lietuva got 199,954 EUR, Cinamon operations Lietuva received 199,683 EUR, and Apollo kinas got 199,486 EUR. Five public institutions - Media and Education Centre, Amfiteatro filmai, Marijampolės telekinas, Baltas ekranas, and cinema centre Garsas - each got 152,515 EUR. Kino pasaka, also a public institution, received 109,032 EUR. Other Lithuanian cinemas received smaller amounts. According to the Lithuanian Film Centre, the support for cinemas is distributed using the de minimis regulation aid, wherein companies experiencing financial difficulties can receive the maximum amount of 200,000 EUR for each undertaking over a 3-year period.

Twelve film distribution companies got 560,000 EUR. They distributed 309 films in Lithunian cinemas last year. The largest amount, 105,671 EUR, went to Theatrical Film Distribution. Another 98,500 EUR was given to ACME Film,  and 77,636 EUR went to GPI.  

According to the Lithuanian Film Centre, the screening of films in cinemas was interrupted for thirteen weeks due to the COVID-19 crisis. After the reopening at the end of June, cinemas are working with restrictions that include maintaining distances between spectators. In June, 17,000 viewers watched films in cinemas, rising in August to 124 000 viewers. This is one third of the normal stream at this time.

An analysis commissioned by the Lithuanian Film Centre shows that Lithuanian cinemas are expected to lose 8 m EUR in ticket sales and another 4 m in additional income in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, The total loss of income could reach around 12 m EUR.