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Norwegian B.O. headed for banner year

Share for domestic pics declines

OSLO — Norway’s box office is heading for a record year led by foreign releases, according to Norwegian cinema org, Film & Kino.

In 2001, admissions in Norway jumped 9.6% to 12.5 million, with domestic market share more than doubling to 15% – the highest in 25 years.

“Statistics for the first six months of 2002 show a slight increase of audiences, especially among smaller theaters in the provinces,” Film & Kino managing director, Lene Loken, said. “Generally the second part of the year outperforms the first, so we expect to do even better than in 2001.”

But local pics will not equal last year’s performance, when two pics – “Elling” and “Cool and Crazy” – sold 1.5 million tickets.

Due to changes in how Norway backs film production, output has been low, with “I Am Dina” the top performer at 400,000 admissions. In the first half of 2002, domestic films represented 9% of the market.

Part one of “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy is the box office leader with more than 1 million admissions. Meanwhile, family movies such as “Ice Age” and “Monsters Inc.” have both outgrossed “Star Wars Episode 2: Attack of the Clones.”

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