Pinterest
NewsLetter DailyWeekly
 
My HanCinema | Sign up, Why ? Your E-mail   Password    Auto| Help
HanCinema :: The Korean Movie and Drama Database, discover the South Korean cinema and drama diversity Contact HanCinema HanCinema on TwitterFaceBook HanCinema PageHanCinema on Twitter

Korean films plunge to record low in May

2008/06/10 | 375 views | Permalink | Source

The market share of Korean movies plunged to a single digit for the first time in six and a half years, reflecting the depth of problems facing local filmmakers amid the lack of a much-needed hit.

CJ CGV, the country's biggest multiplex operator, said in a regular monthly report that 12.82 million people watched movies in May, but only 1 million, or 7.8 percent, opted for home-grown films.

The figure, the lowest since January 2002, marked a continued downward trend that started in February this year when it topped 69.1 percent. The figure plunged to 46.3 percent in March, and then went down further to 23.1 percent in April.

The drastic development came after a briefly hopeful moment in January and February when "Forever the Moment" and "The Chaser" sold far more tickets than expected on the strength of their solid storyline and enhanced dramatic effects.

But the buoyant mood quickly gave way to a bleak outlook in the following months as a slew of powerful Hollywood flicks marched into the Korean box office while there was few, if any, real competitors from the Korean camp.

In May, "Iron Man" sold 3.93 million tickets to rank first, followed by "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" (2.55 million), "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" (1.25 million), "Taken" (930,000) and "Speed Racer" (740,000).

Only two Korean films made it to the top ten last month: "The Moonlight of Seoul" ranked eighth with 630,000 tickets and "A Tale of Legendary Libido" secured the ninth slot with 260,000 tickets.

Even considering the seasonal fluctuation, the ticket sales of May point to a deeper problem. Korean films tend to show a tepid performance in the second quarter, especially near the summer vacation season when Hollywood blockbusters stage concerted attacks. Last July, when the Hollywood onslaught led by "Diehard 4.0" and "Transformers" was enacted, Korean films struggled hard and yet held out to secure a 19.4 percent share. This time, however, the double-digit defense line crumbled so helplessly that domestic media quickly floated the idea of the film industry having hit a rock bottom, preferably a consolidation stage that signals a recovery just around the corner.

The extended three-day weekend from Friday (Memorial Day) to Sunday did not offer any sign of a change in the negative trend. As widely expected, "Kung Fun Panda", a DreamWorks animated feature, topped the box-office chart in its opening week with slightly less than 1 million viewers, followed by "Indiana Jones" (390,000) and "Sex and the City: The Movie" (340,000). Even the fourth place went to a Hollywood romantic comedy, "What Happens in Vegas."..

Trailing behind in the fifth place was "Girl Scout", a Korean comic drama that stars Kim Sun-ah, Na Moon-hee and Lee Kyung-shil as housewives on their hunt for their lost money.

This weekend is no better than last week as there is no major Korean release. Instead, "The Incredible Hulk", another muscular Hollywood film based on the classic Marvel Comics superhero tale, is scheduled to hit theaters on Thursday.

Local critics and moviegoers pin their hope on "Public Enemy Returns", which debuts on June 19. Directed by a leading filmmaker Kang Woo-suk, the third installment of a police action series is regarded as one of a few Korean films that can carve out a bigger share in its battle against Hollywood counterparts.

By Yang Sung-jin

Attention You're reading the news with potential spoilers, make them spoiler free, dismiss


 

 

 Previous news
  • 'Gourmet' Brings Korean Cuisine Back to TV Screen
    2008/06/10 (Source)
    By Han Sang-hee Staff Reporter Seoul Broadcast System (SBS)'s "Gourmet" ("Sikgaek") will once a,...More

  • Musical to Show Retro Culture of 70-80s
    2008/06/10 (Source)
    By Chung Ah-young
    Staff Reporter

    There was a time when a roller-skating rink was one of the few places to hang around with friends among teenagers in 1980s.

    The skaters enjoyed dancing to the strong dance beat song, "Harlem Desire" by London Boys, radiating their youth as they took a break fr,...
    More

  • KBS 'TV Book Club' Celebrates 300th Episode
    2008/06/09 (Source)
    "TV Book Club", a popular television show on KBS 1TV that introduces the notable books of our time, is about to celebrate its 300th episode.

    The program has introduced around one thousand books since it first aired in May 2001 and has invited some 250 notable foreign and Korean literary figures, ,...
    More

Subscribe to HanCinema Pure to remove ads from the website (not for episode and movie videos) for US$0.99 monthly or US$7.99 yearly (you can cancel anytime). The first step is to be a member, please click here : Sign up, then a subscribe button will show up.

Settings

Remove ads

Sign up

Sharing

Activate

Spoilers

Visible, hide

Learn to read Korean in 90 minutes or less using visual associations