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Research Guides

CIN230: The Business of Film

Company Search Tips

Only public companies (companies that sell stock on a stock exchange) are required to publicly disclose certain information to their investors. You can find their filings at EDGAR (U.S.) or SEDAR for Canadian companies. Even with disclosure, it may not be at the level of data - for example, if you are looking for the marketing budget of a certain film, it is not going to be listed in the company's annual financials. It may be mentioned within the report, but the financial disclosure is typically much broader and you would see a line for "Advertising and Marketing" instead of individual cost breakdowns. 

Private companies do not have to disclose any information, and it is rare to find financial information. The best place to search is in news articles in case they have disclosed there. They may also disclose on their website. 

To search for company information in a subscription database, try Mergent:

To search for news articles, try ProQuest or Factiva. 

In ProQuest, to help narrow your company search:

1. Run the search for the company name. 

2. Select "More filters" at the bottom of the sidebar on the left hand side.

3. Look for "Company/organization" and select the drop-down option.

4. You can click on the company name (if it's showing) and then go directly to articles that are about the company.

5. Alternately, if you click on the "More" option, it allows you to click on the company name, look for any similar names (i.e. Netflix Inc, Netflix Canada, etc) and you can also remove articles about companies that may not be as relevant, for example, Twitter and Facebook are listed in the top company list for Netflix. You can remove them and that takes out articles that discuss Netflix on those platforms, so you can focus on articles that are directly about Netflix the company. 

Film Industry Search Tips

There are limited industry reports available. For film festivals, they are typically not public companies, and information will be limited and may be found under broader industry reports related to film or theatres. It may also be useful to search for grant, donation, or tax credit/incentive information. It can also be helpful to check out industry associations that may track member data.  

One sample industry report is this IBISWorld report on movie theatres that includes COVID-impact discussion. 

Film Companies

Company legislation varies by country (and by province/state and any local regulations around the industry). Below are a few articles about why companies form for one movie or single series of television.

Organizing the Business of the Film Company (U.S.)



For information on Netflix and other streaming companies, try searching eMarketer or Statista for data. 

News articles would also be the most up to date source for information related to COVID's impacts on the industry. ProQuest and Factiva are news sources that include a variety of global publications.