After the event, many audiences, including Mr. Li, recorded more events of the day in the circle of friends or microblogs. The reason why so many media came is also because cinemas across the country, after going through the longest period of closure in the history of more than 180 days, have finally ushered in the resumption of work since July 20. All of them lost contact with the cinema, which was once a familiar place, for six months.
Due to the sudden attack of the epidemic, seven films in the Spring Festival were announced to be withdrawn from the archives; on January 23, new years Eve, cinemas across the country began to suspend business, and cinemas around the country began to shut down. In the following half a year, the cinema and the whole film industry entered an unprecedented low point, and the film industry became one of the industries most affected by the epidemic.
Cinema staff: adhere to dust removal and dehumidification for the projector, and feel pressure at the same time
Zhang Lei is deputy manager and technical director of a movie studio in Chaoyang District of Beijing. During his six months of business closure, he would come to the cinema every few days to dust and dehumidify the projector, so as to ensure that all kinds of equipment are still in good condition when they are not in use for a long time. Although he devoted himself to his job, Zhang Lei said that after entering the sixth month of business closure, he began to feel a bit unable to endure.
Zhang Lei said that, as far as he knows, most cinemas have stopped paying performance pay after they have closed down, and they only pay a basic salary of two or three thousand yuan. With the closing time getting longer and longer, many people have to consider taking part-time jobs to ease the economic pressure, while sticking to the cinema work, waiting for work to resume. In the special period of the epidemic, from hospital managers to grass-roots staff, we can understand each other and face unprecedented challenges together.
Wang Yang is the general manager of the content management department of Dadi film management, and Dadi cinema is the headquarters of orange sky Jiahe studio where Zhang Lei is located. As a cross provincial chain cinema company in China, Dadi cinema line has more than 1100 cinemas in China, which is one of the largest cinema companies in China. Last year, the number of viewers of Dadi cinema reached 174 million yuan, and the total box office exceeded 5.8 billion yuan. However, from this years Spring Festival, everything has changed.
Wang Yang: if it is difficult, it may be very difficult on the first day of suspension.
Wang Yang: the box office of the Spring Festival accounts for about 1 / 4 of the whole years box office, about 1 / 4 to 1 / 3, about 25% to 30%. Then you suddenly lose about 1 / 3 of this income and cash flow. I think the impact on any company is very big.
For cinemas, this half years life can be described as bleeding instead of blood transfusion. In terms of income composition, the most important income of a cinema is box office income, accounting for about 80%. There are also sales revenue, advertising revenue and so on. The expenditure mainly includes franchise fee, tax, rent cost, water and electricity fee, property fee, personnel cost, equipment cost and raw material cost. Therefore, once closed, the biggest box office revenue is gone, but the cinema has to pay rent, staff wages and other hard costs. Although some businesses can reduce or partially reduce the rent, the situation that they cant get out of the house for a few months still makes the cinema unbearable.
In the view of insiders, cinema is an asset heavy industry with rigid cost and high dependence on cash flow. However, the box office income of a domestic film should be divided according to a certain proportion. Among them, 5% of the special funds for the development of the national film industry and 3.3% of the tax are directly deducted and paid. The remaining part is the net box office. 57% of the net box office belongs to cinemas and cinemas, and 43% to the producers. That is to say, with a box office of 10 million yuan, the cinema will eventually get about 5 million yuan. After removing the hard costs such as rent and personnel, the profit margin is not large. During the epidemic period, when the profit of the cinema was zero, the grass-roots staff with ordinary income would be more affected.
The epidemic has led to brain drain in the film industry
Zhifena has been engaged in film industry research for a long time in China Academy of Arts. She told us that people tend to think that film practitioners are high-income because of the bright side of the film, but they ignore that there are a large number of grassroots practitioners in the industry. The epidemic has also directly caused the brain drain in the film industry.
Zhifena: originally, the screenwriters wrote the copywriting in the studio, and then the directors all went to shoot short videos. Then the producers basically sold insurance. Then the channel for the employees of the cinema was to sell takeout or Didi. Talents in the film industry are not only high-end talents, but also a large number of bottom-level staff.
Zhifina introduced that the film industry is a complete industry chain from production, production, publicity, distribution and terminal projection. Among them, the cinema is the most important link in the recovery of film product funds. Only when 43% of the box office is allocated to the film maker can it be put into reproduction.
Director of pre production company: suspension of business directly affects the industrys capital chain
Liu Hui, general manager of bad rabbit film, as the director of the early stage production company, said that the closure of the cinema would directly affect the industrys capital chain, thus affecting the entire upstream reproduction.
Independent producer: film production is delayed or faces the risk of divestment. The biggest test of the epidemic situation is to make decisions
For the film production companies, independent producers and film production teams in the upstream of the film industry, in addition to financial difficulties, during the epidemic period, pre filming also encountered unprecedented difficulties. In the opinion of independent producer Cao Weihua, there should be no accident in the process if hundreds of people cast films during the epidemic. Once there is a delay or delay, it is likely to face the risk of divestment.
For the pre production team of the film, the complete shutdown not only means that everyone has no income, but also may cause the film products to be out of stock for a period of time in the future. Independent producer Don River chose to make two films of his own in Northeast China after the outbreak stabilized in March.
Reporter: because of the epidemic situation, where is the biggest test for you?
Don River: make a decision.
During the epidemic period, the increase of production costs, such as personnel costs, venue re leasing and re setting, as well as personnel security, are all unprecedented pressures and challenges for producers.
The cinema closed down, and the publicity and distribution of films stagnated in an all-round way
Zhu Weijie said that after the closure of cinemas, the most important way for companies involved in pre and post production, publicity and distribution in the film industry chain was to temporarily turn to online films, online dramas and TV dramas. Tiangong Yicai is a large-scale Chinese film post production company in China. Due to the lack of film sources, they adjusted the original ratio of 8:2 film to drama business during the epidemic period to 4:6.
For film companies, there is still a way to go, but for cinemas, their self-help is much more difficult. Most of the individual employees make a living by looking for part-time jobs, while cinemas try their best to communicate with commercial entities to reduce rent, reduce staff costs, save water and electricity charges, etc. Besides, we should try our best to tiktok the large number of products sold in the Spring Festival, through the network micro dealers, friends circle, jitter, even the way of stall up the stalls, and sell them at low prices or send them.
Deng Yonghong is the chairman of the capital cinema. He said that although the cinema had been closed for six months, his staff had hardly stopped. Projectionists maintain equipment, cleaners clean and kill, operators reserve anti epidemic materials, and other staff also use the gap to renovate some cinemas. Everyone is preparing for the return to work when they dont know when. Deng Yonghong said that the outbreak of the epidemic in Beijing in June was the most difficult time for him. In addition to the difficulties in cinema operation, he was also worried about the impending epidemic situation.
Although the repeated outbreaks of the epidemic make people in the industry feel ups and downs, but during the closure period, there are also positive news from time to time. On July 16, the state film Administration issued a notice that on the premise of effective implementation of various prevention and control measures for cinemas in low-risk areas, they can be opened to business on July 20 in an orderly manner. According to the data of the National Film Office, from July 20 to August 25, the box office of the national film industry has exceeded 2.3 billion yuan, with about 64 million people watching films. The rate of returning to work in cinemas across the country is about 83%.
After returning to work, cinemas are facing new challenges
At the early stage of the return to work, according to the requirements of epidemic prevention, there were many new regulations in the cinema: for example, the attendance rate should not exceed 30% for cross seat ticket sales; snacks and drinks were not sold in the movie theater; food and drink were forbidden in the movie hall; masks were worn throughout the whole process; the number of shows was reduced to half of the normal period; the viewing time was no more than two hours per show; the number of films was reduced to half of the normal period; Extend the time between the field, different cinemas staggered time display, etc. These regulations give cinema staff a lot of jobs they didnt have in the past.
A lot of viewers dont know the no eating rules. Although it will be inconvenient, most people will cooperate with the cinema to deposit. However, some audiences will bring food or drink into the studio in their bags, and some audiences directly express their incomprehension.
Gao Ying, the operation director of Capital Cinema, said that she could understand that the audience was used to the popcorn and drinks in the cinema. Therefore, on the opening day, she prepared the sealed popcorn and waited at the audiences departure place to bring them back. However, in the face of the cinema, she and the staff pressure is persistent.
In addition to the pressure on safety, Gao Ying admitted that after opening, she also faced operational pressure. According to the epidemic prevention regulations, the 30% attendance rate, the reduction of film layout and the lengthening of the inter field time have objectively limited the box office volume. The number of box office is limited, and the sales of food and beverage products are also restricted. However, after the opening of the business, the rent reduced during the period of closure should be charged normally, and the personnel cost and operating cost will be restored, and the epidemic prevention cost will be more than in the past, which will make the cinema still face losses in the short term. On August 14, three weeks after cinemas across the country returned to work, cinemas in Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai and Guangzhou were informed that the limit on theater attendance was relaxed to 50% from the same day.
In the view of industry insiders, the dynamic adjustment of attendance limit according to the epidemic prevention and control situation plays an important role in the virtuous circle of the market, and will also encourage more blockbusters to come to the market.
Cinema practitioners: transformation and upgrading of cinemas is imperative
Some cinema practitioners believe that the transformation and upgrading of cinema is imperative. Differentiated operation, more emphasis on professional audio-visual experience and immersive experience, giving play to the social function of cinema viewing, etc., are some possible development directions.
The audiences film watching habits and consumption habits have changed
The strategy adjustment of the film industry after the epidemic is not only in cinemas. What changes will happen to the audiences viewing habits and consumption habits during the epidemic period? None of this can be taken for granted by past experience.
Zhu Weijie: just like when I was doing the whole planning, I would think that it should do so. It can get so many box office tickets. The audience will be interested in this point. But the recent impact on us is, is it still right? It is very important that we do this research work after returning to work. The mentality of the whole audience and the data of this audience, including some reactions of the film, may change with the epidemic situation. So we need to get to know the audience again as soon as we get back to work.
Pre production team: return to the content of film noumenon and re understand film
Liu Hui: I think it is necessary for us to calm down and study. For those who make movies, in fact, they hope that our film and television works can have more humanistic care, and then make the public more sympathetic.
In addition, many filmmakers also talked about their feelings. Although the epidemic is a crisis for the film industry, it is also organic in the crisis.
According to statistics, in 2018, the number of screens nationwide was 60079, and the number of film viewers was 1.716 billion; in 2019, the number of screens was 69787, and the number of film viewers was 1.727 billion. In zhifenas opinion, this can show some problems.