South Korean Box Office: 'Taken 3' Takes No. 2 Spot as Local Films Dominate

'Ode to My Father' - H 2014
Courtesy of CJ Entertainment

The Liam Neeson actioner enjoyed a successful early run, while 'The Penguins of Madagascar' debuted in third and local drama 'Ode to My Father' continues its blockbuster performance

South Korean drama Ode to My Father dominated the box office over New Year's break, earning $12 million, or 42.2 percent of weekend sales, from Jan. 2-4, according to the Korean Film Council's KOBIS database. This is the third straight week the title by CJ Entertainment has finished on top since opening Dec. 17.

The JK Youn film starring Lost actress Yunjin Kim has earned a total $55.85 million as of Monday, as nearly 8 million moviegoers have seen the family drama. Only about a dozen films, including Tidal Wave (aka Haeundae), also directed by Youn, have reached the 10 million admissions milestone in Korea. Korean offices use primarily use admissions to measure performance in a country with a population of just 50 million.

Taken 3, which opened in Korea a week earlier than in North America, debuted in second place. It showed on 616 screens across the country to take 16.6 percent of the market, earning a cumulative $8.03 million (1.1 million admissions). 20th Century Fox Korea handles the title in Korea, where the two previous films have also been successful. Both Taken and Taken 2 attracted more than 2.3 million admissions.

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Finishing third was The Penguins of Madagascar, another CJ Entertainment release. The animated feature accounted for 12.3 percent of the weekend revenue, cashing in a total $5.94 million (KOFIC figures may differ from that released by studios). 

Next came the Korean documentary My Love, Don't Cross That River (CGV Movie Collage). The sleeper hit is about to cross the 5 million admissions mark for the first time among indie films here. It already became the most successful title for the indie genre last week, topping Keira Knightley's Begin Again. The film about an elderly couple happily married for 76 years has grossed a total $30.65 million as of Monday.

The Korean crime actioner The Con Artists (Lotte Entertainment) dropped three places down to fifth, which pushed The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (Warner Bros. Korea) down to sixth place. Cumulative earnings for the two films are $15.97 million and $21.06 million, respectively.