Bridesmaids beats The Guard to be our No1 film
BRIDESMAIDS was Ireland's favourite film of 2011 ahead of Harry Potter and home-grown hit The Guard.
Cinema goers splashed out €30.5m to the film industry last year as 3D pushed up sales figures.
The jump in takings was mainly due to increased prices for 3D films, industry experts said.
Irish film The Guard was one of the top box office smashes this year, grossing €4.026m throughout 2011.
The movie directed by John Michael McDonagh and starring Brendan Gleeson, Don Cheadle and Fionnuala Flanagan is now listed as the most successful independent Irish film of all time.
And the black comedy was only eclipsed by two other heavy hitters last year.
Fans of cult children's series Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows; Part 2 contributed €4.22m to the coffers this year.
But the big surprise was runaway hit Bridesmaids.
The movie which made a star of Irish actor Chris O'Dowd grossed €4.31m at the Irish box office.
And it proved popular with American audiences - gleaning an incredible $26m at the US box office in its opening weekend alone.
The Irish Film Board said they were delighted with Ireland's contribution to the film industry this year. "There was huge success with The Guard this year, which obviously is fantastic for Ireland," a representative said.
But sources said overall Irish box office figures are down.
"The recession has not been good news for cinema in Ireland -- like everything else it is suffering," an insider said.