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Spanish Film ‘The Snow Society’ Premiered on Netflix

Last Thursday, January 4, it arrived on Netflix The Snow Society, the film about the tragedy of the Andes directed by Juan Antonio Bayona and chosen by the Academy to represent Spain at the 2024 Oscars. The film has two notable milestones: one, which with a budget of sixty million euros is the most expensive in the history of national cinema; two, which is the first financed by Netflix in Spain that It premieres earlier in theaters than on the platform.

The Snow Society hit the big screen on December 15, three weeks before streaming. This fact has exposed a practice inscribed in a policy opacity by the platform.

The multinational is known for its lack of transparency: the first time it shared audience data for its content was less than a month ago and He didn’t even give viewer numbers., but hours of viewing. When he releases films in theaters—as he did with Roma, the Irish o Don’t look up— the absence of information is total. Today, There is no reliable box office data on these films.only estimates, because Netflix refuses to give them and prohibits theaters from communicating them to Comscore, the industry’s main audience measurement company.

The latter has also happened in Spain. “We send ticket sales figures automatically to Comscore,” explains Fernando Lobo, owner of Cines Embajadores in Madrid. “But those of The Snow Society We are not sending them. Netflix gave the order not to publish them: they told us not to send them to any media other than themselves. “It’s very unusual.”

If it were not for the fact that the rooms are required by law [ver BOE] to provide the Ministry of Culture with ticket sales data, We would never know if the film with the highest budget in the history of our cinema was a success or a failure. In fact, the first audience data The Snow Society did not appear in the catalog of the Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts (ICAA) until this Thursday, January 4, three weeks after the premiere and Pure coincidence.

According to agency sources, the data upload to this website depends of the time your workers have to do it and when the theaters send them (at least, they have to do it once a week). “The figures usually appear in the catalog on Thursdays,” says film analyst and producer Pau Brunet to El Periódico de España, from the Prensa Ibérica Group. “This time they appeared coincidentally on the day the film premieres on Netflix and a week latebecause the normal thing is that they would have appeared two weeks after the theatrical release, that is, on December 28.”

‘Eight Moroccan surnames’ raised six times more

According to official figures, The Snow Society has collected 255.707 euros collected and have seen it 38.289 personas. The catalog does not specify what date these numbers correspond to, but Brunet believes that, with all certainty, They are from his first two days in the cinema (Friday, December 15 and Saturday, December 16). It was this specialist who warned on his Twitter, before the premiere, about the opacity that would accompany the film.

“At the ICAA they even told me that the official figures would not be published. I was very surprised. I talked to the editor of the magazine where I write and he couldn’t believe it,” he says. “I had faith that sooner or later they would come out, because by legal obligation they have to come out, but there was no time frame.” According to your estimates and other unofficial information, The Snow Society would have raised 1.6 million euros during its first three weeks. This information will be confirmed over time, when published by the ICAA.

As the information on the rest of the films is public and richer in details, it is possible compare the premiere of Bayona’s film with other recent ones. For example, with Eight Moroccan surnames, released on December 1. In its debut weekend alone, the story directed by Álvaro Fernández Armero raised almost 1.7 million euros and was seen by 230,452 people. As Brunet points out, Eight Moroccan surnames It is the second best Spanish premiere of the year, only behind Father there is only one 3, by Santiago Segurawhich debuted with 2.4 million grosses.

Next to these millionaire debuts, The 255,707 euros of the film with the highest budget in the history of Spanish cinema seem like pocket changealthough it must be taken into account that The Snow Society It was released only in 110 theaters. Its collection per room amounted to 2,324 euros the first weekend.

Eight Moroccan Surnames It also wins in this metric, with a collection of 4,677 euros per room. It began showing in 360 cinemas and today it has attracted 1.3 million viewers and 8.9 million in collection. Its budget was ten times less than that of The Snow Society: 5.5 million euros. Christmas in your hands, starring Santiago Segura, cost 3.6 million and debuted with a box office gross close to Bayona’s film.

All this data can be consulted on the ICAA website. The organization publishes weekly data on spectators, collections and number of theaters. of the 25 most viewed films in Spain and of all the Spanish films in theaters, even if only one room broadcasts them. Unlike the data that cinemas send you by law, this data comes from Comscore, an entity that the Ministry of Culture contracts for this purpose.

The cinemas, as the owner of Cines Embajadores explained, They send your data to Comscore unless Netflix prohibits it. “We don’t get complicated. When we show a film we reach an agreement with the distributor,” he says when asked about the veto. “Sometimes the contract includes that condition and we have to respect it.”

In turn, cinemas, distributors and other agents in the sector pay Comscore for real-time market information. Comscore has not responded to questions from this newspaper about the Netflix veto and Netflix has declined to comment.

“Netflix cannot conceive of failure”

“Netflix is ​​terrified by the idea of ​​failure. It can’t conceive it. The fact that the data invites us to think that a film with a budget of 60 million is a failure because it raises two million makes him panic., so they take it out of the equation,” Brunet says. “I think Netflix has a conflict when it comes to releasing box office numbers because it’s not their business. Their premieres do not respond to that: there is no ambition to make a certain amount of money on a weekend or to promote the theaters in which it will be released.”

For this expert, the concealment of the figures of The Snow Society “touches the soul a little bit. It’s almost something patriotic, because Bayona is the highest-grossing Spanish director, he is a very big star.”. Even so, he considers that the theatrical release has no commercial vocation, but is made for the film-loving community and that it cannot be compared with that of Eight Moroccan Surnames. Bayona himself pointed out in an interview with Levante EMV, media outlet of the same group, that the release in theaters and then on Netflix “is a different type of exhibition.” Netflix, he said, “makes a living by showing its movies on its platform” and “does not need showrooms to have muscle when it comes to producing a movie“.

“They are different. Netflix makes releases in a few theaters with few screenings to attract a very film-loving sector. Their idea is more to have an event, with presentations with the directors,” Brunet continues. “In this case, the Bayonne team has pushed for the premiere to be as wide as possible. But has not had all the Mediaset machinery behind it Eight Moroccan Surnames. It’s like comparing Anatomy of a fall con Wonka“. Likewise, he believes that “It is very worthwhile to make more than 2,000 euros per copy without a big television behind it. Making such a solid figure is a success that it is impossible to separate both the press campaign and Bayonne.”

Lobo, from Cines Embajadores, believes that “if it weren’t for the fact that it’s on Netflix, The Snow Society It would be one of the biggest box office hits of the year, especially since its release coincides with Christmas. But I think Netflix is ​​not interested in getting into the debate about whether they should bring more movies to the cinema or not. And if there are no figures, there is no debate.”ditch.

2024-01-07 06:37:56
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