Broadcasters, China (mainland) — 04/01/2012 9:15 PM

In 2011, total broadcasting time of documentary films in China reached 58 000 hours

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“In 2011, total broadcasting time of documentary films in China reached 58,000 hours, with total investment of roughly RMB 800 million and total revenues of over RMB 1 billion in the market”, according to the “2011 Research Report on the Development of Chinese Documentary Films” from the Documentary Center at film department of Beijing Normal University.

In the Chinese documentary market, 48% goes to domestic production; 15% goes to adaptation of foreign documentaries; 37% goes to overseas productions.

Total number of television programs reached 83 with altogether 8 channels.

In 2011, there were 26 documentary films in total obtained the public screening license issued by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), increased from 19 in 2009 and 16 in 2010.

“2011 can be considered as the first active year in the history of documentary in China”, said Zhang Tongdao, head of the research team and professor in School of Art and Communication of Beijing Normal University.

In january 2011, CCTV launched Documentary Channel and opened its calls for tenders to the public; documentary channels in various regions were actively involved in purchasing content. These new actions are changing the market from broadcasting domestic production to a new model which production and broadcast are more separated. The move of restricting entertainment content announced by SARFT did not cover documentary, which in fact indirectly facilitate the growth of documentary market.

“With the investment in documentary approaching RMB 1 billion and the increasing number of large-scale documentary films, it shows the rising awareness concerning documentary production. Price of documentaries per minute soared from RMB 30-50 to RMB 100-200. ”

The Report emphasized that almost all Chinese documentaries, except those for educational and promotional purposes, have been being privately produced. According to the report, China should learn from overseas to promote documentary production, distribution management and adopt project-based production to cultivate worldwide documentary brand names.

SOURCE: Documentary Center at film department of Beijing Normal University, China News Services

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