Countries Leading the Movie Industry

Posted on: Nov 27, 2021

A waterfront view of Hong Kong, China at night.Photo Credit: Sean Pavone /

By Staff Me Up

Outside of Hollywood there is a whole world of amazing films for you to watch!   

We’ve all heard the criticisms: Hollywood can’t make anything original. Instead of spinning the wheels and remaking films that were originally produced 20 years ago, other countries are making unique and wonderful content all over the world. We found the top 4 countries in the movie industry outside of the US and sprinkled in some fun facts about each one.

Nollywood (Nigeria)

Lagos, Nigeria. One of the top film countries in the world.

Photo Credit: bolarzeal /

The largest film industry in Africa, Nollywood is producing more films than Hollywood every year (it makes around 2,500 films annually), and is worth over $6.4 billion. If that’s not impressive enough for you, Nollywood is very young and started in 1992 with an electronic salesman making a movie for just $12,000. We encourage you to read more about the rapidly growing Nigerian movie industry.

Nollywood films to check out: Mr & Mrs, The Figurine, October 1st.


Fun fact: After agriculture, Nollywood is the country’s largest employer and makes up 5% of Nigeria’s GDP.

Bollywood (India)

A Bollywood film crew shooting. Bollywood is one of the top film countries on earth.

Photo Credit: BigDane /

Starting out at the same time as American cinema (the creators of the camera brought it to India in 1896), Bollywood was already producing many films by the late 1910s. Today Bollywood news is still making headlines for creating equality in the industry and fighting censorship. The dance-heavy Bollywood as we know it today has evolved since the 70s in the form of Masala films, which have the intent to create joy and forget misery. 

Bollywood films to check out: Rab Na Bana Di Jodi, 3 Idiots and My Name Is Khan.


Fun fact: The B in Bollywood is from Bombay (now Mumbai).


China, another one of the world's best film production countries.

Photo Credit: Robert Mullan /

The heaviest hitter of the bunch, Chinawood had overtaken Hollywood as the largest film industry in the world for two years running until June 2022, when the US crept past the nation’s revenue. North of Beijing is the world’s largest sound stage, which shouldn’t be too surprising given the amount of space the country has. aired with the fact that China only allows 34 international films to be released in the country each year, studios have started co-financing films in China (Dreamworks, Universal) to get around that law and into the profits of hitting that Chinese box office. 

Chinese films to check out: Red Cliff, To Live and Farewell My Concubine


Fun fact: Because of the 34 imported films limit, China had to wait until January 2016 to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens (the movie originally released the month prior, in December 2015). 

South Korea

South Korea, one of the top film production countries in the world.

Photo Credit: The Mariner 4291 /


In 1999 a South Korean produced film, Shiri, was so wildly popular that South Korea mandated that at least 40% of its films shown be domestically produced. The result? Deeply historical films, romance flicks and slapstick comedies that draw in over 50% of the national box office revenue. The history of the South Korean film industry Is an interesting one,  and thanks to the development of multiplexes and the cultural rise of moviegoers(over 226 million people showed up to theaters in 2019), it’s becoming a force to be reckoned with when it comes to the top countries in the movie industry today.

South Korean films to check out: Shiri, Miracle in Cell Number 7 and J.S.A.


Fun fact: At the end of the Korean War, in an effort to revitalize the almost nonexistent filmmaking industry, the President decided to exempt it from taxation.The number of films produced rose quickly, and went from 5 in 1950, to 111 in 1959.

Browse thousands of jobs and find your next gig! Sign up or login to Staff Me Up and get on set today!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *