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Sunday, October 14, 2012

KBO: Masquerade Goes for 5-in-a-Row and on Track for 10 Million (10/12-10/14, 2012)

Masquerade Goes for 5-in-a-Row and on Track for 10 Million

Title Release Date Market Share Weekend Total Screens
1 Masquerade 9/13/12 36.80% 683,845 9,344,967 675
2 A Company Man 10/11/12 27.00% 468,300 576,744 549
3 Looper (us) 10/11/12 11.60% 201,278 250,121 386
4 Ghost Sweepers 10/3/12 5.70% 112,637 844,889 316
5 Dangerous Liaisons 10/11/12 6.00% 106,821 139,370 334
6 Brave (us) 9/27/12 4.70% 90,114 1,072,603 325
7 Taken 2 (us) 9/27/12 3.40% 58,376 2,267,568 281
8 Frankenweenie (us) 10/11/12 1.60% 26,638 30,327 226
9 Spy 9/20/12 0.70% 13,311 1,302,020 105
10 Ted (us) 10/3/12 0.70% 11,685 256,849 80

Despite an underwhelming start for Showbox's A Company Man it was another big weekend for local releases. With a 1.86 million total, admissions were down about 300,000 from last year but that was the Chuseok period. However, this year's local market share was significantly higher at 76% versus 47%.

Going for 5-in-a-row, Masquerade once again held onto the top spot with an impressive 683,845 and will easily cross the 10 million mark within a week and could yet go further still.

A Company Man had a so-so start with 468,300. As big a star as So Ji-seob is, perhaps his appeal is a better fit for television as last year's Always also disappointed during its run. Its box office chances were also likely eroded by the unexpected longevity of Masquerade's success. The film has been well-received and may bounce back but with another big Korean thriller hitting screens next week it will face an uphill battle.

The critically-acclaimed Hollywood sci-fi thriller Looper opened at no.3 with a lukewarm 201,278 and though one could hope for a bounce on the back of some good word of mouth, films of this nature (namely Sci-fi) generally fare poorly at the Korean box office.

Ghost Sweepers took a hefty dive after its bad start as it posted a meager 112,637. The poorly marketed shaman comedy is now unlikely to cross the 1 million milestone.

Opening at number 5, the glitzy Chinese-Korean co-production Dangerous Liaisons was a big disappointment with only 106,821. Despite some huge stars and a large festival presence, Hur Jin-ho's film fell way short of the mark.

Next week sees CJ's romantic thriller Perfect Number go head-to-head with Masquerade on its 6th weekend and honestly, at this stage, all bets are off.


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 Sunday night (Korean Standard Time) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News and the Weekly Korean ReviewsReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

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