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Korean Audiences Undeterred by Higher Ticket Prices

2010/03/29 Source

A 2009 Film Consumer's Investigation report by the Korean Film Council reveals that despite price hikes last year, Korean audiences still remain prolific moviegoers. Last year the standard price for a movie ticket climbed from 7000 Won (U.S $6.18) to 8000 Won (U.S $7.07). A total of 2000 respondents ranging in age from 15 to 49 still rated a night out at the movies preferable to other forms of entertainment such as travelling, shopping or visiting a gallery. Furthermore, despite the hefty increase in price, 66% said they would still watch as many films this year as they did last year and 70.1% still continued watching films since the change. Only 29.9% said they stopped going to cinemas since the change of price.
In a movie going climate where illegal downloading is ever a threat, respondents said they prefer to see 'active' genres at the cinema. Active films are those that suit the big screen such as sci fi, fantasy and martial arts which the report said increased in popularity in contrast to romance films. Last year audiences flocked to see a gigantic tidal wave hit the coast of Korea in Haeundae putting the movie among the top 10 highest grossing films of all time. Avatar has continued to carry the 'active' genre banner into 2010 so far, breaking the 13 million mark in terms of admissions. As for the rising profile of 3D, only 29.4% of the respondents cited the cost of the tickets, the cumbersome glasses and the sometimes nauseating effects as problems.
Currently the box office number one is Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. The big budget story, sitting firmly in the fantasy genre, has already grossed around 5 billion won at the box office so far.

David Oxenbridge

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