Monday, October 17, 2011

Korean Box Office Update (10/14-10/16, 2011)

Weekend of October 14-16, 2011:

Title Release Date Weekend Total
1 Real Steel (us) 10/12/11 590,043 789,230
2 The Client 9/29/11 282,910 2,013,874
3 The Three Musketeers (uk) 10/12/11 258,299 376,220
4 Silenced 9/22/11 235,977 4,331,176
5 Punch 10/20/11 56,116 65,408
6 Always 10/20/11 45,687 46,606
7 Fighting Spirit 10/6/11 29,617 192,831
8 Hit 10/13/11 21,284 29,041
9 War of the Arrows 8/10/11 19,810 7,430,360
10 Countdown 9/29/11 10,324 461,704
- Leafie, A Hen Into the Wild 27/7/11 1,300 2,195,700
- The Day He Arrives 8/9/11 510 42,983
- Ordinary Days 29/9/11 98 1,517
- Scars 13/10/11 81 132

After 11 weekends with a Korean release claiming the top spot at the box office, this week's usurper is Real Steel, Hollywood's new blockbuster which played well in previews last week.  This shouldn't come as too much of a surprise as there was no major Korean release this week and also given the fact that the year's other robot themed tentpole release is Korea's top grosser of the year (Transformers 3 with 7,790,426).

The Client clung to the number two spot for its third straight week with a 282,910 take.  This represents a drop slightly over 40% and puts into doubt whether it can join the 3 million club as it has only just cracked the two million mark.

Silenced (aka The Crucible) took another big tumble (52%) as its mass media exposure begins to fade.  It took 235,977 this weekend and dropped three places.  It had already crossed the four million mark before the weekend but its chances of cracking five look precarious, especially if it keeps suffering such steep falls.

Punch and Always were next at 56,116 and 45,687 respectively as they played in previews.  These are both strong figures for the recent Busan Film Fest features.  They open wide next week and will likely battle it out for first place.  Kim Sang-jin's Fighting Spirit took a big 70% dive after its lackluster opening.  It added 29,617 for a 192,831 total, a disappointing result and this may drop out of the top 10 as early as next week.

Hit, a new film starring Han Jae-suk also had a limited opening this past weekend but its 21,284 admissions does not bode well for its chances.  War of the Arrows added 19,810 admissions to its massive total which now stands at 7,430,360.  Finally Countdown crumbled again with 10,324 tickets sold.

This weekend's take amounted to 1.58 million tickets, a healthy increase over both last weekend (22.5%) and last year's comparable frame (50%).  The bad news is that that increase benefited a major Hollywood release.  Despite having 8 of the top 10 spots, this weekend's Korean market share was only 45%, down a little from last years's 55% but a lot from the last two weekend's 87% and 81%.  Somewhat ironic given that Busan just wrapped up. However the festival's releases will soon be inundating theaters and will likely post strong numbers.

The Korean Box Office Update is a weekly feature which provides detailed analysis of film box office sales over the Friday to Sunday period in Korea. It appears every Monday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

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