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Viewership of at least 323 recent films in S. Korea inflated: police

Aug 22, 2023
  • Source by Yonhap
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Suspicions of inflated ticket sales from 2018 to 2023


Ticket sales of at least 323 films screened in South Korea over the past five years were found to have been inflated, police officials said Wednesday.


The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency announced the result after investigating three major movie theater chains CGV, Lotte Cinema and Megabox, 98 film distributors and 462 movie titles released locally in the past five years over allegations that box office numbers of some hit films were rigged.


The police agency said a total of 69 officials from the theater chains and 24 film distributors were referred to the prosecution Monday as part of the investigation.


In collusion with film distributors, the accused theater officials allegedly entered inflated ticket sales information onto the Korean Film Council's box office compiling service from March 2018 to June this year to boost the box office rankings of the movies released at their theaters, police said.


The accused falsely reported tickets at certain show times were sold out and, as a result of the alleged rigging, a total of 2.67 million viewers were overcounted.


Among the films subjected to viewership rigging were well-known titles, such as 2021 action thriller "Emergency Declaration" and 2022 documentary "The Red Herring," featuring former Justice Minister Cho Kuk, police said.





By Park Boram

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