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Revenues and expenses up for Canada's film, television and video post-production industries in 2019

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Released: 2020-11-04

Operating revenue, film, television and video post-production industry

$2.0 billion


16.1% increase

(period-to-period change)

The film, television and video post-production industry consists of establishments that are primarily engaged in providing post-production services to the motion picture and video industries.

In 2019, the film, television and video post-production industry generated $2.0 billion in total operating revenue, an increase of 16.1% from 2017. Operating expenses totalled $1.9 billion in 2019, up 19.6% from 2017. With growth in operating expenses outpacing growth in operating revenue, the operating profit margin fell from 8.4% in 2017 to 5.7% in 2019. The accelerated growth in expenses was largely driven by salaries, wages and benefits, which have increased by $171.4 million (+19.2%) since 2017.

The largest operating revenue dollar gain compared with 2017 was in Quebec, where operating revenues were up $216.3 million (+41.8%), followed by British Columbia, with an increase of $79.8 million (+13.2%).

Visual effects and animation services for audiovisual works generated 59.8% of total industry sales in 2019, while motion picture film laboratory services accounted for 12.6%.

Like other cultural industries, the film, television and video post-production industry was disrupted by the pandemic, but with a lag. When the film and television production industry ground to a halt with the spread of the pandemic in Canada in mid-March 2020, the Canadian post-production industry had enough work to sustain it for some time, although alternative work arrangements were required. Nevertheless, like other industries negatively affected by the pandemic, the film, television and video post-production industry is expected to see a significant decrease in revenue for 2020. Although this industry's downstream position within the entertainment supply chain has shielded it from multiple short-term economic effects of the pandemic, a similarly delayed recovery of several months is also likely to occur when filming activities ramp up to their pre-pandemic levels.

  Note to readers

Data for 2015 and 2017 have been revised.

The data for reference year 2019 were collected during spring and summer of 2020. This collection period includes the events and business disruptions around COVID-19 and, in general, response rates have been lower. As a result, there may be larger-than-normal revisions to the data in future releases. For more information on data quality and revisions please refer to 2415 - Survey of Service Industries: Film, Television and Video Post-production.

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