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Monday, August 12, 2013

Korean Box Office: Another Huge Weekend for Snowpiercer and The Terror Live

Following last weekend's record breaking 4.5 million admissions bonanza, business quelled somewhat over the past frame. However, at 3.6 million, it is still on of the biggest weekends on record and significantly above last year's 3.1 million. The local market share was a mighty 78%, in line with last year. Just like last week, business was bolstered by a pair a giant productions.

TitleRelease DateMarket ShareWeekendTotalScreens
2The Terror Live13/07/3129.50%1,071,4933,831,554809
3Epic (us)13/08/077.80%292,440413,340471
4Detective Conan: Strategy Above Depth (jp)13/08/073.50%145,723205,118301
5Turbo (us)13/07/253.40%137,4701,692,614333
7The Smurfs 2 (us)13/08/013.10%126,073724,070317
8Red 2 (us)13/07/182.30%84,2802,938,633318
9Cold Eyes13/07/030.40%16,1645,499,169103
10The Wolverine (us)13/07/250.50%14,5671,066,194108

Snowpiercer dipped 30%, which was perhaps inevitable given how curious people were to watch Bong Joon-ho's latest straight out of the gate. It brought in an enormous 1,599,778 admissions this weekend while bringing its total to a stellar 6.45 million. Earlier this week it was breaking records, such as quickest to four million (seven days) but has since slowed below The Thieves' pace, which had accrued 6.88 million through the same point.

The big question is whether it will cross the 10 million ticket sales barrier. After such a big weekend and with so much in the tank already, it seems likely that it will cross it but business generally takes a hit in mid-August and a new blockbuster poised to do well is also entering the fray.

Staying at number two and only down 10% was The Terror Live, which added 1,071,493 to its total, which now stands at 3.83 million. Things are looking good for the film to cross at least six million and further milestones are within reach.

The next three spots were occupied by animations, unsurprising given the holiday season. Hollywood's Epic opened to a decent 292,440 while a new Detective Conan installment scored an okay 145,723, in line with the many previous installments. Turbo tumbled 60% for 137,470 but may have enough left in the tank for a two million finish.

Next week's big film will be the epidemic thriller Flu. With 126,281 admissions in previews banked this weekend, it seems the Jang Hyuk/Soo-ae vehicle should have no trouble scoring a big opening. But will it be enough to overcome Snowpiercer? My guess is yes, but only by a nose. Look for the three blockbusters (including The Terror Live) to finish neck and neck with ~1 million tallies.


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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