the supply and financing of canadian documentaries 1999 00 to 2003 04 n.
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THE SUPPLY AND FINANCING OF CANADIAN DOCUMENTARIES 1999-00 TO 2003-04. April 25, 2005. Purpose of the Study. Part of environmental scan for Documentary Policy Advisory Group The study examines: The volume of documentary production The main financiers Aggregate financing structures

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purpose of the study
Purpose of the Study
  • Part of environmental scan for Documentary Policy Advisory Group
  • The study examines:
    • The volume of documentary production
    • The main financiers
    • Aggregate financing structures
    • Historic trends (over the past five years) in the financing of documentaries
volume of documentary production
Volume of Documentary Production
  • Over the past 5 years, over 6,000 hours have been made by independent producers

Hours of Canadian Documentary Production,

1999-00 to 2003-04

Year Television Feature Film Total

1999-00 983.8 35.3 1,019.1

2000-01 1,405.7 32.1 1,437.8

2001-02 1,419.8 33.1 1,453.0

2002-03 1,378.5 28.4 1,407.0

2003-04 1,229.9 22.9 1,252.8

5-year total 6,417.8 151.9 6,569.6

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

volume of documentary production1
Volume of Documentary Production
  • Over $1 billion in independent documentary production activity

Canadian Documentary Production Volume,

1999-00 to 2003-04

Year Television Feature Film Total

($ millions)

1999-00 $155.07 $15.82 $170.8

2000-01 $206.37 $9.48 $215.85

2001-02 $237.68 $9.22 $246.91

2002-03 $252.67 $7.58 $260.25

2003-04 $232.99 $6.54 $239.54

5-year total $1,084.78 $48.65 $1,133.43

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

volume of documentary production2
Volume of Documentary Production
  • The NFB in 2003-04 contributed some $20M to Canadian documentary production; $2.1M of which is co-productions with independent producers

Source: NFB, CAVCO

english language documentaries volume of production
English-language documentaries: volume of production
  • About 3,800 hours produced in 5 years

Hours of English-Language Documentary Production

1999-00 to 2003-04

Year Television Feature Film Total

(hours)

1999-00 609.0 24.9 633.9

2000-01 726.1 24.3 750.4

2001-02 891.4 15.5 906.9

2002-03 798.3 17.4 815.7

2003-04 671.8 16.6 688.4

5-year total 3,696.6 98.7 3,795.3

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

english language documentaries financing
English-language documentaries: financing
  • In English, most of the financing comes from broadcasters

Share of Financing Provided by Various Sources, 1999-00 to 2003-04 (Selected Years)

Year Public Private Broadcasters Foreign

1999-00 30.4% 27.1% 28.6% 13.9%

2001-02 26.5% 26.2% 38.6% 8.7%

2003-04 28.8% 23.6% 37.4% 10.2%

3-year

average 28.3% 25.5% 35.5% 10.6%

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

english language documentaries financing by format
English-language documentaries: financing by format

For feature-length production, most of the financing is from broadcasting sources

(Volume of production = $5.2 M)

Financing of Feature Docs, 2003-04

Source of Financing Share of Financing Federal tax credits 8.5%

CTF24.8%

NFB 4.6%

Provincial tax credits 10.0%

Provincial - other 3.0%

Private funds 5.6%

Public broadcasters 12.5%

Private broadcasters 0.3%

Pay/specialty broadcasters 12.3%

Canadian Distributors 10.0%

Canadian Producers 5.7%

Other Canadian 1.7%

Foreign 0.9%

english language documentaries financing by format1
English-language documentaries: financing by format

One-offs are financed mainly via CTF

(Volume of production = $44.7M)

Financing of Television One-Offs, 2003-04

Source of Financing Share of Financing

Federal 10.3%

CTF 20.0%

NFB 1.9%

Provincial tax credits 9.6%

Provincial - other 2.8%

Private funds 3.2%

Public broadcasters 13.5%

Private broadcasters 5.4%

Pay/specialty broadcasters 9.0%

Canadian Distributors 4.0%

Canadian Producers 8.3%

Other Canadian 2.1%

Foreign 10.0%

english language documentaries financing by format2
English-language documentaries: financing by format

Series have strong domestic (especially broadcasters) and foreign financing

(Volume of production = $121.4M)

Financing of Television Series, 2003-04

Source of Financing Share of Financing

Federal tax credits 5.6%

CTF 10.7%

NFB 0.2%

Provincial tax credits 10.5%

Provincial - other 0.9%

Private funds 3.2%

Public broadcasters 4.9%

Private broadcasters 4.9%

Specialty broadcasters 29.6%

Canadian Distributors 6.3%

Canadian Producers 2.8%

Other Canadian 0.3%

Foreign 20.2%

english language documentaries for television
English-language documentaries for television

The bulk of television production is series, which account for five times more production hours than one-offs

Hours of Television Production by Format

Year One-offs Series

1999-00 100.6 510.8

2000-01 142.2 602.8

2001-02 152.0 752.5

2002-03 157.0 650.8

2003-04 124.7 579.3

5-year total 676.5 3,096.3

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

english language documentaries for television1
English-language documentaries for television

Per-hour production budgets have remained flat over the past five years

If inflation is factored in, per-hour budgets have declined in constant dollars

Volume of Television Production in millions of dollars

One-offs Series

1999-00 $27.10 $81.01

2000-01 $45.29 $112.06

2001-02 $50.09 $120.91

2002-03 $49.48 $126.13

2003-04 $43.04 $121.43

5-year total $215.01 $561.5

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

english language broadcasters licensing documentaries
English-language broadcasters licensing documentaries

Over the past few years, more broadcasters are licensing documentaries

  • In terms of one-off documentaries:
    • Mid-budget productions attract the most broadcaster interest
    • Low-budget productions, however, are attracting more broadcasters
  • In terms of series productions:
    • Lower-budget series have increased in popularity, particularly with specialty services
    • Big-budget series continue to be of interest to a small number of broadcasters

Source: CTF

english language broadcasters licensing documentaries1
English-language broadcasters licensing documentaries

While at least two dozen broadcasters access CTF funding for English-language documentaries, that access is highly concentrated

  • In the past three years, five broadcasters have accessed 70% of CTF funding to English-language documentaries
    • The CBC claims almost ¼ of the CTF’s funding to English-language documentaries
    • Specialty services, in total, account for about 2/3 of CTF documentary funding

Source: CTF

french language documentaries volume of production
French-language documentaries: volume of production
  • About 2,800 hours in 5 years, overwhelmingly in television

French-Language Documentary Production, 1999-00 to 2003-04

Year Television Feature Film Total

(hours)

1999-00 374.8 10.4 385.2

2000-01 679.6 7.8 687.4

2001-02 528.5 17.6 546.0

2002-03 580.3 11.0 591.3

2003-04 558.1 6.3 564.4

5-year total 2,721.2 53.2 2,774.4

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

french language documentaries financing
French-language documentaries: financing
  • In French, most of the financing comes from the public sector

Share of Financing Provided by Various Sources, 1999-00 to 2003-04 (Selected Years)

Year Public Private Broadcasters Foreign

1999-00 41.2% 29.5% 27.5% 1.8%

2001-02 40.9% 24.7% 31.1% 3.3%

2003-04 39.5% 24.9% 35.3% 0.3%

3-year average 40.5% 26.1% 31.7% 1.8%

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

french language documentaries financing by format
French-language documentaries: financing by format
  • Feature-length docs account for only $1.2M in production, financed largely via tax credits and CTF

Financing of Feature-Length Documentaries, 2003-04

Source of Financing Share of Financing

Federal 9.6%

CTF 18.6%

NFB 8.4%

Provincial tax credits 19.2%

Provincial - other 8.7%

Private funds 3.7%

Public broadcasters 7.5%

Private broadcasters 1.5%

Pay/specialty broadcasters 6.3%

Canadian Distributors 0.8%

Canadian Producers 14.6%

Other Canadian 1.1%

french language documentaries financing by format1
French-language documentaries: financing by format
  • One-offs are financed mainly via CTF and Quebec incentives
  • (volume of production = $21.7M)

Financing of One-Offs, 2003-04

Source of Financing Share of Financing

Federal tax credits 8.3%

CTF 24.5%

NFB 2.5%

Provincial tax credits 19.4%

Provincial - other 5.3%

Private funds 2.3%

Public broadcasters 19.3%

Private broadcasters 2.3%

Pay/specialty broadcasters 3.7%

Canadian Distributors 5.6%

Canadian Producers 5.5%

Other Canadian 0.8%

Foreign 0.3%

french language documentaries financing by format2
French-language documentaries: financing by format
  • Series are financed heavily via CTF and specialty services (volume of production = $46.7M)

Financing of Series, 2003-04

Source of Financing Share of Financing

Federal tax credits 9.9%

CTF 21.5%

NFB 0.4%

Provincial tax credits 16.3%

Provincial - other 1.2%

Private funds 3.1%

Public broadcasters 13.1%

Private broadcasters 8.5%

Specialty broadcasters 19.0%

Canadian Distributors 1.6%

Canadian Producers 3.7%

Other Canadian 1.8%

Foreign 0.1%

french language documentaries for television
French-language documentaries for television
  • Series account for over 7 times as many hours as one-offs
  • One-offs have nonetheless grown steadily; series are more volatile

Hours of Television Production by Format, 1999-00 to 2003-04

Year One-offs Series

1999-00 40.0 334.8

2000-01 51.0 628.5

2001-02 64.6 463.9

2002-03 70.2 521.6

2003-04 78.6 479.5

5-year total 304.4 2,428.4

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

french language documentaries for television1
French-language documentaries for television
  • In dollar terms, however, series volume is only twice as high as one-off volume, which confirms that one-offs cost more to produce per hour

Volume of Production in millions of dollars 1999-00 to 2003-04

Year One-offs Series

1999-00 $11.94 $35.02

2000-01 $14.29 $34.73

2001-02 $18.03 $48.66

2002-03 $19.99 $57.07

2003-04 $21.77 $46.75

5-year total $86.02 $222.2

Source: CAVCO (excludes NFB and public broadcaster in-house production)

french language broadcasters licensing documentaries
French-language broadcasters licensing documentaries
  • Far fewer broadcasters license documentaries in French compared to English
    • In terms of one-offs, specialty and public broadcasters are most active
    • There has been a decline in broadcaster hours of low- and mid-budget one-offs, but increased licensing activity in big-budget one-offs
    • Specialty services are most active in lower-budget series licensing
    • Big-budget series are more popular with the SRC than other broadcasters

Source: CTF

french language broadcasters licensing documentaries1
French-language broadcasters licensing documentaries
  • In the past three years, 5 broadcasters have accessed 3/4 of CTF funding to French-language documentaries
    • The SRC claims over ¼ of the funding in documentaries
    • Educational broadcasters account for another 30%

Source: CTF

canadian documentary producers
Canadian Documentary Producers
  • The annual Playback survey shows that, in 2003, there were at least 75 documentary producers in Canada
    • 20 producers account for over 70% of the documentary production volume
    • Another 55 producers account for less than 30% of total documentary production volume
    • Fewer than half of the largest documentary producers also produce “magazine/lifestyle/reality” productions
concluding observations
Concluding Observations
  • Documentaries are not homogeneous
  • Policy-makers should be aware of the large volume of documentary production, and its significant contribution to economic activity.
concluding observations1
Concluding Observations
  • The public sector provides a majority of the financing, and CRTC-regulated broadcasters contribute a significant share. Policy and regulation need to be aligned.
  • If feature-length documentaries are important to policy-makers, then need to develop a theatrical market and financing tailored to their specific needs