Korean Box Office: SECRETLY GREATLY Sets Slew of Records
I don't normally write about the box office until after the weekend but a new film has just opened and set a slew of records, so here's a quick recap. Secretly Greatly, the sophomore effort from Bedevilled (2010) director Jang Chul-seo, set records for opening day and biggest single day for Korean films, while also becoming the quickest film to cross the one million admissions mark overall.
Opening on Wednesday (June 5th), the film eclipsed The Thieves previous high mark (436,596) by drawing in 497,560 viewers. Enough to set a new record for domestic films but still behind Transformer 3's 544,995 bow in 2011. Secretly Greatly also clinched the biggest single day for a local film on Memorial Day (June 6th) by soaring to 919,035, again ahead of The Thieves (770,715) but behind Transformers 3 (956,500). Finally, the film also became the first (from any country) to cross one million admissions in two days. In fact, it did so in a lightning fast 36 hours.
Secretly Greatly follows three young North Korean operatives who pose as a village idiot, wannabe rocker and high schooler in a village on the outskirts of Seoul as they await their missives from the North. Now the film has not been getting great notices from critics but seeing as the audience skews heavily towards teenagers this shouldn't pose an enormous problem. Three big young stars (Kim Soo-hyun, Park Ki-woong and Lee Hyun-woo) headline the picture but it is the enormously popular Kim Soo-hyun (The Thieves and many popular K-dramas) who is the talk of the town. It doesn't hurt that the 'Covertness' webcomic this was based on was read by over 40 million people. Kids are out in force as school is ending for the year, which has a lot do with this rocket-fuelled start, and following this week's exams the film may continue to draw in record crowds.
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