The Korean Film Industry has become over the past years one of the most important in the world. In the last decade it has been growing at a fast paste but it wasn’t a lucky thing. The Korean Government has made some important chances so that the industry could grow and remain competitive against the foreigner productions. By law the distributors have the right to import one foreign film for every four Korean movies they produced. Also there are big economical incentives so filmmakers can film their own movies. Despite this the industry is pretty much monopolized by a small group of companies as I talked about them in my last article Unity makes strength!”.

This year the film industry made history as it reached 200 million admissions representing an increase of 2.6% compared to last year, which was 194.89 million admissions. For us to have an idea of how much people has gone to the cinemas we could say that in average each Korean has gone at least 4 times to the cinemas. Another important number to take into account is that 60% (118.16 million) of the spectators were admitted for local films, this represent an increase of 2.6%, versus 2012’s 114.61 million spectators, which was the first time that homegrown films over past the 100 million mark. Also this year 8 Korean films pass the 5 million viewers something that never happened before.

This year the most watched film was for “Miracle in Cell No.7” directed by “Lee Hwan-Kyung” and distributed by N.E.W. The film shown at 866 screens reached 12.810 million admissions (6.4% of the total admissions of the year) obtaining a gross of KRW 91,429,000 ($85.943 dollars). At second place is “Snowpiercer” directed by “Bong Joon-ho and distributed by CJ E&M Corporation. This film shown at 1,128 screens reached 9 million admissions obtaining a gross of KRW 66,905,000 ($62.890). At third place is “The Berlin File” directed by “Ryoo Seung-wan” and distributed by CJ E&M Corporation. This film shown at 984 screens reached 7,166 admissions obtaining a gross of KRW 52,355,000 ($49.213).

Other very important thing to remark about Miracle in Cell No 7 is that it became the highest grossing Korean film in the last 6 years and it became the 3rd most watched film in Korean Film History. Just after The Host (2006) directed by Bong Joon-ho with 13,019,740 admissions and The Thieves (2012) directed by Choi Dong-hoon with 12,983,334 admissions.

But things are not over yet as I write this article there are two important films that have just been screened, The Attorney stared by Song Kang-ho and The Suspect directed by “Won Sin-yeon”. It is just a matter of days for us to have the final numbers of 2013 and see how big the picture is. But we can say one thing for sure the Korean Industry is at its best moment.

Top 3 Highest Admissions in Korean Film History
1st – The Host – Bong Joon-ho – 13,019,740 – 2006
2ndThe Thieves – Choi Dong-hoon – 12,983,334 – 2012
3rdMiracle in the Cell No 7 – Lee Hwan-kyung – 12,810,355 – 2013

Top 5 Highest Box Office Films in 2013

Name Country / Distributer Release date Gross ($US) Admissions Screen
Miracle in cell no. 7 South Korea (N.E.W) January 23 $85.943 12,810,776 866
Iron man 3 U.S (Sony Pictures) April 25 $66.557 9,001,309 1,389
Snowpiercer South Korea (CJ E&M Corp) August 1 $62.890 9,341,572 1,128
The face reader South Korea /Showbox) September 11 $62.042 9,134,114 1,240
The Berlin File South Korea (Cj E&M Corp.) January 30 $49.213 7,166,268 984