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Thriller 'Hide and Seek' Brings in 5 Million Admissions at Korean Box Office

The surprise hit has become the seventh homespun film this year to bring in 5 million admissions, continuing the dominance of local fare.

SEOUL—South Korean thriller Hide and Seek brought in 5.07 million admissions as of Monday, its distributor NEW announced.

It continues the dominance of homespun works in the Korean box office, as it is seventh local film to reach the 5-million admissions mark following Miracle in Cell No. 7 (12.8 million viewers), The Berlin File (7.16 million), Secretly Greatly (6.95 million), Cold Eyes (5.5 million), The Terror Live (5.55 million), and Snowpiercer (9.137 million).

Snowpiercer by Bong Joon Ho, currently ranking fourth in theaters, is expected to reach the 10-million mark soon. So far this year, Korean films have accounted for 58.6 percent of the local market share (some 86.4 million admissions), while U.S. imports were 37.7 percent (55.6 million admissions). This continues the strong box office performance of homegrown works, which in 2012 registered their 100 millionth ticket sale for the first time in a given year.

Hide and Seekdrew in 1 million viewers in just 64 hours of its release, and its strong performance is considered especially impressive as the film is backed by a smaller distributor and lacks the power of a star-fueled cast and crew.

The feature debut by Huh Jung stars Son Hyun-ju, a middle-aged actor better known for TV roles. Son plays a successful businessman whose life is turned upside down when his estranged brother is reported missing. The film has been receiving both critical and popular acclaim for its portrayal of urban indifference and crime.