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Australian content on Video

Australian share of top 500 retail video documentary titles (DVD, Blu-ray and VHS), ranked by sales value, 2004–2009

Australian-produced titles accounted for 12.2 per cent, or just over $5.3 million, of the retail value of the top 500 documentary titles sold on DVD and Blu-ray during 2009 (ranked by value rather than unit sales)1. Although the Australian proportions have remained steady over the last two years, they have fallen significantly from the 2006 peak in units sold and sales value and the 2007 peak in the number of titles. Contributing to this have been the growing dominance of the foreign Top Gear titles while sales of popular local series Mythbusters and Crocodile Hunter have softened. Nevertheless, the value of 2009 sales remains above the six-year average of $4.9 million.

The highest-selling Australian titles in 2009 were the DVD editions of Love the Beast and Fat Belly: Chopper Unchopped, while First Australians made the top three for the second year. Since 2004, among Australian documentaries, the top-selling individual titles have been The Secret, Wild Australasia and Bra Boys; the top-selling series when sales of all seasons and editions are combined are Mythbusters, Crocodile Hunter and Food Safari.

Graph: Australian share of top 500 retail video documentaries, 2004-2009. The following table provides detailed data.
  Top 500 video sales of documentary titles2
Titles3 (no.) Units4 (no.) Retail value4 ($)
All Aust. % Aust. All Aust. % Aust. All Aust. % Aust.
2004 500 62 12.4% 783,512 126,504 16.2% $17,555,003 $3,123,988 17.8%
2005 500 81 16.2% 787,871 148,963 18.9% $20,550,196 $3,859,840 18.8%
2006 500 113 22.6% 936,621 209,573 22.4% $24,072,651 $5,036,371 20.9%
2007 500 133 26.5% 1,330,592 255,732 19.2% $33,885,699 $6,508,064 19.2%
2008 500 101 20.2% 1,680,192 226,529 13.5% $42,030,560 $5,452,602 13.0%
2009 500 95 19.0% 1,512,142 208,433 13.8% $43,740,882 $5,329,483 12.2%

Source: Screen Australia analysis of GfK Retail and Technology Australia data.

Australian titles are those under Australian creative control, including domestic productions, official co-productions and other productions involving shared creative control, i.e. with a mix of Australians in key creative positions.
1. Based on a non-extrapolated sample of video sales (DVD and VHS for 2004–2007; DVD and Blu-ray from 2008) from approximately 85 per cent of Australian retailers; see About the data Archived: Australian content: Video sales.
2. Documentary does not include reality, light entertainment, music performance, sports coverage, infotainment or instructional titles. It does include documentary features, TV series and made-for-video titles.
3. Refers to the number of individual and box set titles sold during each calendar year (first-release titles issued that year and continued sales of previously issued titles). This may include multiple editions and multiple formats of the same program.
4. Box sets may include Australian and foreign titles. Although these sets are counted as a single title for ranking purposes, their units and value are apportioned according to the origin of discrete titles in the collection.