Showing posts with label song hye-kyo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label song hye-kyo. Show all posts

Monday, October 31, 2011

Korean Box Office Update (10/28-10/30, 2011)

Weekend of October 28-30, 2011:

Title Release Date Weekend Total
1 Punch 10/20/11 594,125 1,510,522
2 Real Steel (us) 10/12/11 355,383 2,085,158
3 In Time (us) 10/27/11 188,317 220,966
4 Always 10/20/11 173,033 735,159
5 The Client 9/29/11 39,924 2,367,018
6 Friends with Benefits (us) 10/27/11 29,920 46,366
7 The Three Musketeers (uk) 10/12/11 28,755 644,117
8 Silenced 9/22/11 27,994 4,640,739
9 A Reason To Live 10/27/11 27,424 39,162
10 The Tree of Life (us) 10/27/11 19,205 24,663
- Teacher and the Devils 10/27/11 3,012 6,078
- You Pet 11/10/11 2,305 2,305
- HIT 10/13/11 1,538 109,167
- Couples 11/2/11 1,456 7,994

Another healthy weekend at the box office, although with little discernible difference from last week's.  Admissions totalled 1.53 million, yet another increase over last year.  The market share held steady at 56% which was below last year's weekend (70%) when The Unjust opened.

Punch remained on top after a strong start, not only that but ut managed to increase by nearly 20% in its sophomore frame for a 594,125 three-day and 1,510,522 total.  This will certainly be Kim Yun-seok's fifth straight feature to top 2 million, a remarkable feat.  The question is how far can it go in the coming weeks, word of mouth seems to be strong so I'm betting it will cross 3 million before long.

Real Steel declined a modest 30% to 355,383 and managed to cross 2 million in the process.  A strong performance for a film that has underwhelmed in its homeland.  Justin Timberlake seems to be flavor of the week as his romcom Friends With Benefits, which opened months ago in the west, and his current In Time both opened to middling figures, 29,920 and 188,317 respectively.  Friends With Benefits seemed to fare particularly badly but I don't think romcoms play well in Korea since the homegrown product in that department is so strong.

Always lost half its audience after a midlevel start and wound up with 173,033.  At this point it may or may not cross the 1 million mark.  The Client, which had played strong throughout the month took a big tumble as it prepares to exit theaters. It added 39,924 to an impressive 2,367,018 total.  Silenced performed similarly as it dropped to 27,994 for what will likely to its last weekend in the top 10.  It has sold 4,640,739 tickets to date and sits at number 4 on the yearly chart.

Song Hye-kyo's new movie, A Reason to Live, which premiered at Busan, got off to a very disappointing start with 27,424 admissions.  This will likely be its one and only week in the top 10.

Next week, the anticipated marital arts Thai-Korean co-production The Kick will make its bow in theaters.

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. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Weekly Review Round-up (10/08-10/14, 2011)

A number of reviews covering a wide array of films coming in from the just wrapped-up Busan International Film Festival, although not quite as many as I would have thought. I imagine that given how Asia-centric the festival was this year, not too many English-language publications sent a critic. Also a few reviews from this year's Sitges Film Festival this week.


(Blog About Everything, October 6, 2011)


(The Hollywood Reporter, October 8, 2011)

(The Hollywood Reporter, October 11, 2011)

(Variety, October 13, 2011 - Subscription Required)

(Pop Matters, October 6, 2011)


(The Hollywood Reporter, October 11, 2011)

End of Animal

(The Hollywood Reporter, October 11, 2011)

(Modern Korean Cinema, October 12, 2011)

(Hangul Celluloid, October 10, 2011)

(, October 8, 2011)


(Twitch, October 12, 2011)

(The Hollywood Reporter, October 10, 2011)

(Modern Korean Cinema, October 9, 2011)

(East Asia, October 3, 2011 - French)

(Twitch, October 7, 2011)

The Yellow Sea

(Japan Cinema, October 5, 2011)


Black Hair, 1964
(New Korean Cinema, October 8, 2011)

(Kim Bong Park, October 13, 2011 0 French)

(dramabeans, October 11, 2011)

The Weekly Review Round-up is a weekly feature which brings together all available reviews of Korean films in the English language (and sometimes French) that have recently appeared on the internet. It is by no means a comprehensive feature and additions are welcome (email pierceconran [at] gmail [dot] com). It appears every Friday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News, and the Korean Box Office UpdateReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Korean Cinema News (09/29-10/05, 2011)

Big news week for Korean cinema, a good portion of it for the incoming Busan Film Fest and the controversy surrounding new film The Crucible. A number of trailers this week as well as a brief new section to showcase new posters.


Extreme-Short Film Festival Opens in Seoul
Last Thursday, the 3rd Seoul International Extreme-Short Image and Film Festival opened in Guro, Seoul. 387 short of about three minutes are being featured at this year's edition. 144 films are competing across the six categories . The festival openers were A Pale Purple Bird directed by actor Oh Kwang-rok, The Diner directed by Korean singer Horan, and Curse direct by Korean comedian Park Seong-gwang. (, September 29, 2011)

Always, which is opening the 16th edition of the Busan International Film Festival, sold out online in a staggering seven seconds. This marks an improvement over the already impressive 18 seconds achieved by Hawthorne Tree Forever, last year's opener. (, September 27, 2011)
It's been a tough year for the folks running the Busan Intl. Film Festival. Following the retirement of former director Kim Dong-ho it has been a difficult year for those running the Busan International Film Festival. Some critics from within the domestic film industry and the international community wonder whether the fest can continue without Kim's leadership. However, the 16th edition of Asia's largest film festival is gearing up for change, with a new name and new headquarters. (Variety, October 3, 2011)

Arrow, the Ultimate Weapon – The Historical Background
Kim Han-min’s Arrow, the Ultimate Weapon historical action flick is set to get the London Korean Film Festival 2011 underway in a few weeks. Director Kim, whose previous features are Paradise Murdered (2006) and Handphone (2009), sought to attempt something more historical with his third film, and chose this interesting period in the early 17th century. Philip Gowan explains the background to the film. (London Korea Links, September 29 2011)

DMZ Docs 2011 Closes With Tiniest Place Top WinnerThe 3rd DMZ Korean International Documentary Film Festival (DMZ Docs 2011) closed with a screening of The Tiniest Place. Directed by Tatiana Huezo, the international competition top award winner. The Mexican film was the recipient of the White Goose Award which comes with KW15 million and the honor of screening as the festival’s Closing Film. The documentary film festival, which ran for seven days, took place around Paju City, led by co-festival directors Cho Jae-hyun and Yoo Ji-tae. (kobiz, September 30, 2011)

Sector 7 and Five Other Korean Films to Screen at Tokyo
Six Korean films have been invited to the upcoming 24th Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF)  including the sci-fi film Sector 7 as a Special Screening. The other Korean films include Kong Quee-hyun’s mystery U.F.O. and Na Hong-jin’s thriller The Yellow Sea, which will both feature in the Winds of Asia section. The 3D underwater creature feature Sector 7 is due for release in Japan on Nov. 12, 2011. (kobiz, September 30, 2011)

The 16th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF)’s Asian Cinema Fund (ACF) will join the World Documentary Exchange (WDE), a documentary network between Europe, the Americas, and henceforth Asia. The expanded network aims to create more opportunities for documentaries around the world. (kobiz, September 30, 2011)

Stateless Things and The Day He Arrives Continue Fest Rounds
Kim Kyung-mook’s Stateless Things has been invited to the Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF), which runs in Canada until Oct. 14. Kim’s independent film is in the Dragons and Tigers competition. Stateless Things has also been invited to the upcoming 55th BFI London Film Festival’s World Cinema section, along with Hong Sang-soo’s The Day He Arrives. The London Film Festival will run Oct. 12 – 27 this year. (kobiz, September 29, 2011)
The Busan Cinema Center, which features a huge roof shaped in a wavelike pattern, opened Thursday in Busan. It is propped up by a single pillar built to resemble a pair of ice-cream cones. The center will be the main venue of the annual Busan International Film Festival, previously known as the Pusan International Film Festival. With the completion of the center, the southern port city wants to be recognized not only as a regional cinematic hub but also as the home of key architectural landmarks. (The Chosun Ilbo, September 30, 2011)
A movie currently running in cinemas is sparking a growing call for the revision of laws governing sexual crimes against the disabled and minors. The Crucible, a film based on the true story about school staff sexually assaulting hearing impaired students, is adding mounting pressure on policymakers and politicians to change the laws on sexual assaults on children and welfare foundations. (The Korea Times, September 29, 2011)

Song Stars as Grieving Documentary Maker
After starring as the famous Joseon gisaeng - female entertainer - Hwang Jin-i and the mysterious daughter of a Korean shaman, Song Hye-kyo is returning to the big screen as a documentary filmmaker mourning the death of her fiance. "When I pick movies, I don't really think about whether the film I'm going to shoot is going to be a commercial one or an art house one," Song told reporters at a press conference promoting the film, A Reason to Live, on Monday. (, September 27, 2011)
Fans of Oldboy star Choi Min-sik have had to face rather a lot of downtime for the actor in recent days, Choi first withdrawing from the film industry entirely to protest proposed changes to the screen quota system in 2006 and then working only sparingly since his return. Kim Ji-Woon's 2010 effort I Saw The Devil was just Choi's second lead role since 2005 effort Crying Fist and his only work since that effort was to contribute his voice to an animated feature. But Choi will be back in 2012 in the lead role of Yun Jong-bin's The War Against Crime (aka Nameless Gangster) in which he will play opposite Ha Jung-woo as a government official in Busan during a very public and hard fought war against organized crime in the early 1990s. (Twitch, October 3, 2011)

Pan-Asian Youth Film School Opens in Busan
A film academy inviting young aspiring filmmakers from across Asia began last week ahead of the opening Thursday of the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF). The Asian Film Academy (AFA) opened for the seventh time Thursday as part of the country’s largest cinema event. This year’s installment has invited 24 men and women from 17 countries to take part in workshops, master classes, mentoring sessions and other educational initiatives. (The Korea Times, October 3, 2011)

How a New Cinema Center Could Change the Busan Film Festival
Organizers hope the $15 million Busan Cinema Center, designed by Coop Himmelblau, will dazzle festgoers arriving for one of Asia's most important film events. Destination architecture is hitting the film festival world with the opening of the Busan Cinema Center. Designed by influential contemporary architects Coop Himmelblau of Austria, the building will serve as the home of Asia's largest cinema event, the Busan International Film Festival, which opens Oct. 6 in South Korea's second-largest city after Seoul. (The Hollywood Reporter, Ocotber 1, 2011)

Korean Film Archive Showcases 'Radio Days'
Throughout October, the Korean Film Archive (KOFA) is holding a free VOD retrospective on films from the golden era of the 60s that were originally based on popular radio programs called “Radio Days”. The program will feature 10 films. In Korea, the 1950s and 60s were the heyday of not just films but of radio, too, and a lot of radio programs that were popular hits were then adapted into films and plays. The classic films A Romantic Papa, directed by Shin Sang-ok in 1960, and The Sea Knows (a.k.a. Hyunhaetan Knows), directed by Kim Kee-duk in 1961, were both based on radio serial shows. (kobiz, October 4, 2011)

Busan International Film Festival to Amuse Movie Fans With 307 Films
Busan is set to thrill movie lovers from around the world when the 16th Busan International Film Festival gets underway on October 6 for nine days. Over 300 films from 70 countries, as well as a plethora of famous movie stars from both Korea and overseas, will be featured at the festival this year. A number of films have already sold out their screenings in record times. (, October 5, 2011)

In the aftermath of the box-office hit Dogani (aka The Crucible/Silenced), depicting the true tale of sexual abuse in a school for hearing-impaired students, the Gwangju Metropolitan Office of Education determined Monday that it would force the Inhwa School to shut down. Gwangju officials convened an emergency meeting to discuss measures against the school for disabled students and will require all 22 students to be transferred to another establishment soon. (Joong Ang Daily, October 5, 2011)

Actress Kang Soo-yeon has been chosen as one of the judges of this year’s Asiana International Short Film Festival. Along with the actress, four other prominent film industry names, including Japanese director Isshin Inudo, chief director of the festival Seigo Tono, director of Guanajuato International Film Festival Sara Hoch and director Kim Tae-yong, have been selected as judges this year, according to the festival organizers. (Joong Ang Daily, October 5, 2011)
The 2nd Gwacheon International SF Festival in Korea opens today (Sept. 30) with the Japanese animation Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex – Solid State Society 3D directed by Kenji Kamiyama. The festival will run until Oct 16 at the Gwacheon National Science Museum. It aims to encourage creativity and imagination in children by combining "scientific imagination and filmic imagination". (kobiz, September 29, 2011)

Korean High-Schooler Wins Int'l Animation Award 
A Korean high school senior has won a prize at the 2011 Ottawa International Animation Festival. Kim Bo-won of Korea Animation High School in Hanam, Gyeonggi Province was given the 2011 Adobe Prize for Best High School Animation for her work titled I'm Sorry, beating about 2,000 entries from around the world. (The Chosun Ilbo, September 30, 2011)

Another Film Shows Sexual Abuse of the Disabled in N. Jeolla Area
With the hit Korean movie The Crucible fueling public outrage against sexual abuse of the disabled, another film about sexual violence against the disabled in Gimje, North Jeolla Province, is drawing keen attention. The Crucible, a 125-minute commercial feature, includes descriptions of sexual assault in Gwangju, but Sum, an 89-minute independent film, describes the pain and love of the heroine and the rape victims. Park Ji-won, a 30-year-old disabled woman, played the heroine in Sum and more than 20 other people with disabilities also performed as supporting cast. (The Dong-a Ilbo, October 1, 2011)

Korean Animation Waddles Into China
The first Korean animated film to play at Chinese theaters opened at 3,000 screens yesterday and is about the adventures of a hen who escapes a chicken farm to realize her dream of hatching her own egg. Leafie, A Hen Into The Wild is based on the hit teenage novel of the same name and has a running time of 93 minutes. The 3-billion-won ($2.5-million) film is currently showing nationwide in China with dubbing in mandarin. It earlier became the first Korean animation to draw 1 million viewers domestically, experts said, where it posted box-office receipts in excess of 2.2 million after it was released in July on 350 screens. (Joong Ang Daily, October 1, 2011)

Pres. Lee Calls for Measures to Prevent Sexual Crimes Against Disabled & Minors
President Lee Myung-bak recently got to watch the much-talked about Korean movie The Crucible which is based on a true story about school staff sexually assaulting hearing impaired students. After watching it, the President said that our society needs to be more conscious of sexual crimes against the disabled, and that he will work to better protect people with disabilities and minors from becoming victims of such crimes. (, October 4, 2011)

Film Picks for 2011 Busan Film Fest
The 16th annual Busan International Film festival, one of the world’s most prestigious, will once again kick off on the 1st Thursday of October. The sheer amount of film options can seem a bit overwhelming. Approximately 300 movies from 70 different countries with 135 world premiers will be screened in Haeundae, Centum City, and Namp-dong. Here is a "lockdown" list of picks. (The Vanguard Element, October 5, 2011)

IMAX Signs Revenue Share Deal in China With CJ CGV Holdings, Ltd
IMAX Corporation today announced that CJ CGV Holdings, LTD, a subsidiary of Korean media conglomerate CJ CGV Co. Ltd., has signed a revenue share agreement to add 15 new IMAX(R) digital theatre systems in the People's Republic of China. Under the terms of the agreement, CJ CGV Holdings, LTD is scheduled to install the first IMAX systems in 2011, with all remaining installations expected to be completed between 2013 and 2017. (Market Watch, October 4, 2011)
Spike Lee is set to direct an American version of the South Korean favorite Oldboy, withJosh Brolin looking like the guy to play the lead role. Brolin would be a man who is kidnapped one night and imprisoned for fifteen years for reasons unknown to him. Released back into society just as abruptly as he was snatched, he begins to look for the person or persons responsible for his incarceration. Along the way he meets a young chef who becomes his partner in the search. And now there’s a report that Rooney Mara, of The Social Network (2010) and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (2011), is the choice to play that role. (/Film, September 28, 2011)


Metamorpheses Director Oh In-chun
Inchun Oh is a Korean filmmaker, director and screenwriter. Born on August 30, 1980, he studied filmmaking at Korea National University of Arts, where he wrote and directed A Moment - a collaboration between Korea National University of Arts and Beijing Film Academy, filmed entirely in Beijing. His latest short film Metamorphoses (2011) has been screened internationally at a number of film festivals. (Hangul Celluloid, October 3, 2011)



You Pet

(Modern Korean Cinema, October 3, 2011)

Korean Cinema News is a weekly feature which provides wide-ranging news coverage on Korean cinema, including but not limited to: features; festival news; interviews; industry news; trailers; posters; and box office. It appears every Wednesday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Korean Cinema News (09/15-09/21, 2011)

Not a huge amount of news this week, mainly pieces on the upcoming Busan film fest. Also a couple of interviews and trailers.


Won Bin’s The Man From Nowhere to be released in China
Actor Won Bin‘s blockbuster film The Man From Nowhere will be meeting audiences in China. According to the Beijing, China office of the Korean Film Commission on September 15th, The Man From Nowhere will be released in more than 4,000 cinemas across China on September 16th. Depending on the turnout of the opening week of this intermediate scale distribution, the movie may further expand on the number of cinemas that it will be showing in. (allkpop, September 15, 2011)

Kim Ki-duk to Head Jury of Eurasia Film Festival
The international jury of the seventh Eurasia international festival which opened in the Kazakh city of Almaty on Monday will be headed by South Korean film director Kim Ki-Duk. His last film Arirang will be shown in the "Special Event" programme. (, september 19, 2011)

Poster revealed for the upcoming Korean movie My Way
A poster for Kang Je-gyu's mega-blockbuster My Way, which reportedly cost $30 million to make, has appeared online, the film is set for release in December. (, September 19, 2011)

Actress Song Hye-kyo plays a documentary producer who forgives a 17-year-old boy for killing her fiance in the movie A Reason to Live, which will premier at the 16th Busan International Film Festival next month. The film is directed by Lee Jeong-hyang, of Art Museum by the Zoo (1998) fame. It was officially invited to premiere at the Gala Presentation of the film festival. (The Chosun Ilbo, September 20, 2011)

DMZ Korean International Documentary Festival Opens Sept. 22
The Third DMZ Korean International Documentary Festival will open Sept. 22 to 28 in Paju, Gyeonggi province, a northern South Korean city bordering North Korea. The event celebrating themes of peace, life and communication will show 100 documentary films from 30 countries around the world. (The Hollywood Reporter, September 20, 2011)

Busan Int'l Film Fest to Shed Light on SE Asian Cinema
Asia's largest film festival, the Busan International Film Festival, will be held from Oct. 6 to14 at five theaters in the city of Busan. Some 307 films from 70 countries will be screened, with 135 premiering at the festival. The festival was formerly known as the Pusan International Film Festival but amended the spelling of its name this year to conform to the official Romanization of the city in which it is held. (The Chosun Ilbo, September 20, 2011)

Haunters Picked as a Must-see of Fantastic Fest
Haunters, a South Korean movie about a child who has the ability to control anyone who makes eye contact with him. He can assemble armies with the power of his mind. "It's very superhero-esque," says Tim League, festival founder. "But there's no costumes. It plays out more like a drama." (The Hollywood Reporter, September 21, 2011)


Kim Man-hee Interview
Paul Quinn interviews the director of the blockbuster Arrow, the Ultimate Weapon which will be the opening of the upcoming London Korean Film Festival. (Hangul Celluloid, September 16, 2011)

Toronto Fest Interview with Mia Wasikowska
Mia Wasikowska discusses working on the new Park Chan-wook film Stoker which is currently in production. Skip down to the final few questions. (The A.V. Club, September 20, 2011)


(Modern Korean Cinema, September 19, 2011)

Korean Cinema News is a weekly feature which provides wide-ranging news coverage on Korean cinema, including but not limited to: features; festival news; interviews; industry news; trailers; posters; and box office. It appears every Wednesday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.