Figures just released confirm that this summer saw the highest number of admissions to UK cinemas since 1969.

From June – August 2008, there were 53,642,237 admissions, 5.6 per cent higher even than the figure for 2007, which many saw as a high water mark in recent times.

Industry commentators have put the runaway success of cinema this summer down to three key factors:

  • first and foremost, the sheer quality and range of films on offer, including Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Sex and the City,The Dark Knight, Mamma Mia! and Wall-E;
  • theimpact of the economic downturn – more people decided to holiday in theUK this summer and to seek the affordable and escapist entertainmentprovided by cinema;
  • poor and unpredictable summer weather – cinema remains a dependable leisure option for all occasions.

Commenting on the figures, CEA Chief Executive Phil Clapp said:

‘”Ithink even cinema industry veterans have been taken by surprise by thepopularity of cinema this summer. We knew that admissions generally holdup well when the economy falters, but the range of high quality movieson offer over the last few months has produced a truly exceptionalperiod for UK cinema.

Eyes are now turning to the Autumn, with hopes remaining high that the upcoming slate of films – including Australia, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, High School Musical 3 and in particular Quantum of Solace – will continue to attract people to cinema theatres in large numbers.”

Audiences can get a sneak preview of these and many other upcoming films here at the Autumn Collection trailer.