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Korean Box Office Report in February 2018

Mar 30, 2018
  • Writerby SONG Soon-jin
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Sluggish Korean Films, No Lunar New Year Rush

This year’s Lunar New Year was not very good for Korean comedy films. According to the February 2018 Report on the Korean Film Industry by the Korean Film Council (KOFIC, Chairman OH Seok Geun), moviegoers watching foreign films such as Black Panther and Coco accounted for 55.1% while those watching Korean films such as Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead comprised 44.9%. Marvel’s Black Panther topped the Korean box office with 4.79 million viewers, nearly double that of the 2.41 million viewers that went to see local period comedy Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead.

Audiences numbered 15.55 million and total sales were USD 118.2 million in February 2018, which was an increase of 2.4% and 44% over the same period of the previous year, respectively. “It is likely that the small audience was a result of the failure of Korean films to mobilize viewers, despite it being the Lunar New Year holiday,” KOFIC said. Of the top ten grossing movies of February, six were Korean movies: Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead, Golden Slumber (1.13 million viewers), Psychokinesis (710,000 viewers), Heung-boo: The Revolutionist (410,000 viewers) and Along With the Gods: The Two Worlds (2017) (360,000 viewers). However, in February, Korea’s box office performed poorly overall, especially films relevant to social criticism such as Psychokinesis, Golden Slumber and Heung-boo: The Revolutionist as well as comedy films like Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead, which has typically been a hit during the holidays.
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