VETERAN, HWANG Jeong-min, 2015. ©CJ Entertainment

2015 was a big year for Korean movies. But with several big names ( Kim Jee-woon , Park Chan-wook ) returning to the scene in 2016, there is no room for a box-office slowdown.  Here is a list of just a few of the blockbuster Korean films to look out for in 2016 :

Secret Agent (Mil-Jeong)

Kim Jee-Woon
Director Kim Jee-woon reunites with iconic actor Song Kang-ho

Some fundamentalists may debate whether a film fully financed and distributed by Warner Brother can be called Korean. Regardless, there is no doubt this Warner’s debut Korean language movie is one of the most anticipated films this year. Director Kim Jee-woon reunites with iconic actor Song Kang-ho for this film for the first time in 7 years (since The Good, the Bad and the Weird ). Kim chose 1930’s as the backdrop to depict tumultuous drama of Korean freedom fighters against the Japanese regime.

The Handmaiden / Handmaid (Agassi)

Set in the 1930’s in South Korea and Japan. Story revolves around 4 people: a noble lady (Kim Min-Hee) who has inherited a fortune, a swindler count (Ha Jung-Woo) , a young female pickpocket (Kim Tae-Ri) and the noble lady’s uncle (Cho Jin-Woong) .

Park Chan-wook, will return to his home audience with an adaptation of a dark British lesbian crime novel Fingersmith. In his interview with Variety, he explained this film is about exploring eroticism rather than vengeance like his earlier movies such as Old boy. The leading cast includes Ha Jung-woo, who has several major hits under his belt including Assassination.


Ha Jung-woo (Assassination) and Bae Doo-Na (Cloud Atlas) both star in Director Kim Seong-hun’s thriller ‘Tunnel’

This is another feature starring Ha Jung-woo, arguably the reigning royalty of Korean film industry. Ha will play the role of an average salesman who gets trapped in a collapsed tunnel. Enigmatic and star of Cloud Atlas Bae Doo-Na will play his wife. Director Kim Seong-hun, who enjoyed critical and commercial success with A Hard Day, is at the helm for another thriller and serious box office contender.


Hwang Jung-Min the hottest property in korean cinema in 2015 is back

Hwang Jung-Min had a remarkable year in 2015 with two films (Ode to my Father, The Veteran) exceeding the coveted 10 million ticket mark. Kim Sung-Su is at the helm of  this action-crime-thriller. It also stars Jung Woo-sung, whose huge stardom started from a cult classic Beat, also directed by Kim.

The Last Princess (Deokhye Ongju)


This biopic is an adaptation of a best-selling novel by Kwon Bi-young. Son Ye-jin will play the tragic character of Princess Deokhye, who was born to the Emperor Gojong. She eventually gets caught up in a turmoil as the Japanese annexation tightens its grip over the dynasty. It will be helmed by Hur Jin-ho of Christmas in August.