RIYADH The box office continued its growth in Saudi Arabia, with revenues totaling $238 million in 2021, an increase of 95 percent compared to 2020 revenues of $122 million, according to latest figures from Comscore.

Saudi Arabia has consolidated its position as the biggest market for cinemas in West Asia in terms of total box office revenues, surpassing the UAE, which achieved a box office of $130 million for the year 2021.

Saudi cinemas witnessed the release of 340 new films in 2021, up from 222 films in 2020.

The Egyptian comedy film, Wa'fet Regala “A Men's Stand”, won the top spot, by raising more than $15 million, and was the highest-grossing movie in theaters since January 2018.

The world's most-watched movie Spider-Man No Way Home came in second with revenues of $11.2 million, followed by crime and comedy Cruella, which earned $9.1 million, and then in the fourth place, the film Wrath of Man by British director Guy Ritchie, which earned $8.3 million in Saudi cinemas.

The Egyptian comedy film, Msh Ana “Not Me”, was ranked among the five highest-grossing films for 2021 in Saudi cinemas, while Mama is Pregnant, came in tenth place, having collected $5.9 million.

This huge growth in box office revenues in Saudi Arabia coincides with the doubling of the number of cinemas, as the number of multi-screen cinemas increased from 33 theaters at the beginning of 2021 to 53 by December 2021.

Saudi Arabia aims to increase the number of cinema screens from 430 screens to 2,600 screens by 2030, Business Development Manager at the Saudi Ministry of Investment, Bahaa Abdulmajeed said recently.

Accordingly, the consulting firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), expects Saudi Arabia to become a billion-dollar market for films in the next few years.

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