VIE-STYLE

Việt Nam cinema one of Asia’s fastest growing: Deadline Hollywood

Last year, Việt Nam box office reached US$150 million, or around 90 per cent of pre-pandemic levels, from a total of 1,100 screens. Not bad for a market that in 2010 only had 90 screens and annual revenue of less than $15 million.

333614 mai 1 | FDI Việt Nam
A scene from ‘Mai’ directed by comedian Trấn Thành. Photo thethaovanhoa.vn

HÀ NỘI A report by Liz Shackleton, an Asia-based film and TV industry analyst from Deadline Hollywood (deadline.com), a US authoritative source for breaking news in the entertainment industry, recently highlighted Việt Nam as “one of Asia’s fastest growing markets”.

The report, with headline: “How Vietnam has become one of Asia’s fastest growing markets with new multiplexes, a movie-hungry audience & vibrant local film biz”, confirmed the emerging market of Vietnamese movies in the recent days, particularly during the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday.

“Lunar New Year is a key box office period in several Asian territories, but nowhere was it more hotly contested this year than in Vietnam, where several local, Japanese and Hollywood movies were slugging it out over the week-long holidays (February 9-15),” Liz wrote.

The report also commented on the busy release schedule in the country’s cinema saying it reflects a “vibrant market” that has seen stellar post-pandemic recovery, by some counts the second fastest recovery in Asia following India, along with a young but dynamic local industry.

In the report, Liz gave examples of films that grossed outstanding revenues right on the first days of release, including Mai by Trấn Thành, Gặp Lại Chị Bầu (Meet My Pregnant Sister Again) by Nhất Trung, and Quỷ Cẩu by first-time director Lưu Thành Luân.

Other Vietnamese movies including Sáng Đèn (Bright Lights) by Hoàng Tuấn Cường and Trà (Tea) by Lê Hoàng, and imported ones such as Japanese animation Spy X Family Code: White, US studio films Madame Web and Argylle were reportedly contributing to raising the heat of the cinema market in Việt Nam.

However, the report commented that these days there were many unusual occurrences in the country’s movie market.

“Although the previously state-run industry only opened its doors 10-15 years ago, box office was growing at a steady clip of ten per cent annually before the pandemic, overtaking Thailand, which has a much more developed and longer established film industry,” it said.

Last year, Việt Nam box office reached US$150 million, or around 90 per cent of pre-pandemic levels, from a total of 1,100 screens. Not bad for a market that in 2010 only had 90 screens and annual revenue of less than $15 million.

The growth is due to a few factors, but one of the biggest is the multiplex building programmes undertaken by Korean exhibitors CJ CGV and Lotte Cinema, along with local studios Galaxy Cinema and BHD Star Cineplex, the report said.

Recently, Việt Nam has also seen the emergence of hip new cinema chains, such as Beta Cinemas and Cinestar, which offer lower ticket prices aimed at students and middle-income cinema-goers.

Also driving the market is a lively local production sector that is experimenting with new genres and making a wider range of films – again an achievement considering that private companies were only allowed to start producing in the mid-2000s.

Theo Vietnamnews