The aim of the pavilion is to create a space for dialogue and discussion with film industry leaders from around the world, and to enable Saudi filmmaking companies to meet and exchange ideas with global filmmakers.
The Saudi Film Commission has exhibited its pavilion at the 74th edition of the Cannes Film Festival
The cinema industry in Saudi Arabia is the fastest growing in the Middle East – both in the production and consumption of films and streaming programming. The film sector is creating a business opportunity for international filmmakers, producers and creatives who wish to collaborate with or create content for the Saudi film market – which is expected to be worth $1.2bn by 2030.
Figures released during the 2020 META Cinema Forum exhibitors’ conference showed Saudi Arabia as the region’s top-grossing territory, with more than $73m movie ticket sales made during the previous year – a feat made all the more impressive in a difficult year for cinema due to the pandemic.
Opportunities in the sector are already being recognised by international titans. Netflix recently announced a five-year partnership with a Saudi digital media studio, Telfaz11 to produce eight feature films, alongside homegrown Saudi films performing well on its streaming platform with The Perfect Candidate, Scales, and Masameer.
With over half of Saudi’s media revenue coming from at-home entertainment, there is a huge market potential for streaming and online content producers. 95% of Saudi internet users watch videos online (2019) and video-on-demand has been growing at a staggering rate of >27% per annum over the last five years.
The Film Commission is developing the sector by embedding a regulatory framework, driving investment into the sector, developing Saudi talent, building international partnerships and events, and positioning the Kingdom as a world-class filming destination.
Saudi Arabia is undergoing a cultural transformation as part of Vision 2030, which is diversifying the economy. Under the leadership of the Ministry of Culture, the cultural sector is set to contribute more than $23bn to the Saudi economy and 100,000 jobs over the next decade.