U.K. box office primed to be biggest ever

LONDON — The Film Distributors Assn. is predicting the summer at the U.K. box office will be the biggest on record in terms of admissions.

At a swanky summer-launch lunch Thursday at the Haymarket Hotel hosted by the FDA and given a volt of star wattage by the attendance of Jude Law, the FDA projected that 35 million people — more than half the population — will visit the cinema in July and August.

A minute-long trailer combining clips from a variety of pics bowing this summer, including “Shrek the Third” and “Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer,” was premiered at the launch event. According to Mark Batey, FDA chief exec, the trailer reps the first time Brit distribs have combined to produce a trailer encouraging generic cinemagoing.

Up to June 3, U.K. box office takings were up 6% on the same period last year according to EDI Nielsen.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more