UK box office takes record receipts
Avatar, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Ice Age III have been revealed as the three highest-grossing films in the UK last year, with the James Cameron blockbuster alone grossing £92 million - making it the highest grossing film of all time in the UK.
The UK box office took a "recession resistant" £944 million last year, according to UK Film Council research.
The figures showed that despite the economic slump, the UK saw record receipts and the highest admissions since 2002.
Speaking at a launch of the report in London, researcher David Steele said that trends over the decades tended to show that the cinema market carried on regardless of the recession.
He said the "mysterious recession resistant effect" could be down to people saving money in other areas such as holidays, but still wanting to enjoy themselves.
John Woodward, chief executive officer of the UK Film Council, said: "British cinema has been weathering the recession well" and "firing on all cylinders".
Pirates of the Caribbean actor Orlando Bloom was found to be the UK star most likely to feature in the globe's most bankable movies. He made eight appearances in the top 200 films at the worldwide box office between 2001 and 2009.
Harry Potter stars Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint were just behind him with six appearances apiece. Veteran actors Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Christopher Lee also starred in six of the top blockbusters each.
Others who featured prominently included Pirates of the Caribbean star Jonathan Pryce, Star Wars actor Ewan McGregor and Batman and Terminator star Christian Bale.
UK films and talent won 36 major film awards in 2009, with the Oscar-laden Slumdog Millionaire being the most recognised movie.