South Korea Box Office: Local Films Dominate, 'Mockingjay 2' Drops to Fifth

Courtesy of Showbox/Mediaplex

'Inside Men' and other homegrown films lead the rankings, while the final 'Hunger Games' movie was the only foreign title in the top 5.

Local title Inside Men topped the South Korean box office for the second consecutive weekend during the Nov. 27-29 period, followed by other homespun titles. The Hunger Games: MockingjayPart 2 was the only foreign title in the top rankings as it took fifth place.

Inside Men, starring Terminator Genysis star Lee Byung-hun, swept over half of the market share again after debuting last week. According to the Korean Film Council's KOBIS database, the Showbox/Mediaplex title accounted for 55.4 percent of the share, earning a cumulative total of about $25 million.

In terms of admissions, by which Korean industry observers measure box-office ranks, Inside Men crossed the 1.13 million mark after it recorded the highest single-day admissions score (489,515) for an R-rated film on Nov. 21, previously held by the 2014 Korean film Tazza: The Hidden Card (475,507 admissions). Directed by Woom Min-ho, Inside Men is about the power players across the political, business, media, underworld and legal sectors cooperating and competing with another.

Other homespun films followed in the top box-office spots.

The Priests maintained its No. 2 position for the second week in a row, though its share of the revenue almost halved to 10.8 percent from last week's 19.5 percent. The CJ Entertainment film about priests undertaking an exorcism has brought in more than $33 million so far. The film is also earning extra revenue since opening in Los Angeles and Dallas cinemas on Nov. 26 and as it continues to be released across other key North American cities.

Next in third was You Call It Passion, which trailed close behind The Priests as it took 10.2 percent of the share. Directed by Jeong Gi-hun, the drama portrays the woes of a rookie reporter under her insufferable boss. The Next Entertainment World (NEW) film grossed about $2.2 million during its first weekend in theaters.

In fourth place was another new film, and a second CJ Entertainment title to rank in the top five, The Sound of a Flower. The period drama accounted for 6.2 percent of the revenue, with its total coming down to $1.42 million. The film features K-pop star/popular actress Suzy as a 17th-century Korean "pansori" opera singer fighting gender codes and other obstacles to become an artist.

Mockingjay 2, distributed by Lotte Entertainment, was the only Hollywood film among the top five as it took 5.3 percent of the market share. Its share more than halved from the previous week, when it debuted at No. 3 with 13 percent of the revenue. The global phenomenon has nevertheless made $4.42 million in South Korea, contributing to its foreign total of $242.4 million.

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