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135 Mln Movie Tickets Sold in Korea, Up 3.8% from Last Year

2006/01/08 Source

It looks like Korea's movie industry is starting off the year on a relatively upbeat note. More than 135 million people in Korea went to the theaters in 2005 and experts say the release of Korean blockbuster movies in the new year should see even more people flocking to the cinema.

In Korea last year, about five million more people went to the movies than in 2004. Local film studio, IM Pictures said about 135 million movie tickets were sold throughout Korea, with 308 films released, 87 being Korean. IM Pictures did point out the rise seen in 2005 wasn't much since the number of moviegoers has been rising on average between seven and 30 percent in recent years. Some movie critics said such a minimal rise suggests a slowdown in the local movie market.

However, other experts said Korea's theaters will attract more moviegoers this year as a number of both local and foreign blockbuster films continue to bring in people. In December alone "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" attracted 1.3 million people followed closely by Korea's new high-budget movie "Typhoon" which drew slightly over 1 million. Peter Jackson's "King Kong" in third place is also expected to attract more moviegoers early this year.

Critics said in 2006, similar to last year, Korean movies may help boost the market. Ticket sales declined in the first half of 2005, due to the absence of major hits, however, the second half bounced back strongly with the help of Korean films. "Marathon", also called the "Running Boy," about an autistic man overcoming hardships was one of the hottest flicks of the year along with "Welcome to Dongmakgol". More film lovers overseas have been showing an interest in Korean cinema in recent years, and this new demand is anticipated to increase local industry sales.

Arirang News

Source : www.chosun.com...

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