South Korea Box Office: Oscar Hopeful 'The Throne' Reigns Again Over Holiday Weekend
The local period drama that will vie for a 2016 best foreign-language Oscar nomination has earned almost $32 million as attendance peaked over the Korean Thanksgiving long weekend.
Homespun court drama The Throne ruled the South Korean box office during the local holiday weekend from Sept. 25 to Sept. 29, grossing $32 million, according to the Korea Film Council's KOBIS database. The Intern, meanwhile, debuted in fourth place as domestic films dominated the charts.
The Throne topped the ranks for the second consecutive week, as attendance peaked during the four-day Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving) long weekend. The costume drama accounted for 36.1 percent of the market share during this period. In terms of admissions, by which local industry observers usually measure a film's performance, the film has already hit 4.79 million admissions as of Wednesday and recorded the third-best single-day attendance rate for Korean films during the annual Chuseok holiday, one of the biggest breaks of the year.
The Throne ranked No. 9 in terms of worldwide box-office earnings from Sept. 25-27, according to Rentrak. Distributed by Showbox/Mediaplex, the film was chosen recently as the Asian country's Oscar submission for the 2016 best foreign-language film category.
The Accidental Detective debuted at No. 2. The CJ Entertainment title took up 18.3 percent of sales during the holiday, earning a total of almost $9 million. The comedy stars heartthrob Kwon Sang-woo and funnyman Seong Dong-il as an investigative blogger and detective, respectively, who form an unlikely partnership to solve a murder case.
The Accidental Detective's successful debut pushed Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials down to No. 3 after it blazed through a third of sales the previous week. The second Maze Runner film distributed by 20th Century Fox Korea brought in 13.9 percent of the revenue, contributing to a gross total of $15.4 million.
The Intern, meanwhile, debuted in fourth place as it reaped 10.4 percent of the market share. Handled by Warner Bros. Korea, the film starring Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro earned a cumulative $5.1 million during its first week in Korean theaters.
Yet another homegrown film made debuted in the top ranks over the holiday, with The Long Way Home finishing at No. 5 as it took 6.6 percent of the box-office revenue. The war drama stars A-listers Sul Kyung-gu and Yeo Jin-gu as South and North Korean soldiers, respectively, who meet by chance and form an unlikely bond in the Western Front dividing the two Koreas during the Korean War (1950-1953). The Lotte Entertainment title opens in time for the 70th year since the Korean peninsula has been divided.