2009 Box Office Review - South Korea - Part 2
In 2009 there were probably more than 50 films with a budget of less than KRW10 billion that received a theatrical release, while five years ago there were only three.
Top performing “Haeundae,” which stars Sol Kyung-gu and Ha Ji-won, attracted families, including teenagers and seniors, who are comprising 40% of the film’s audience.
Films by some of Korea's biggest name directors Park Chan-wook (Thirst) and Bong Joon-ho (Mother) underperformed commercially.
In the coming year the KOFIC will also create a KW20 billion account to guarantee loans, meant to support Korean films and their development in overseas markets, as well as in the form of co-productions.
To fight piracy, KOFIC will make available an online marketplace for films called KOME – Korean Open Movie Exchange. It estimates KOME will help the online market grow from KRW16.4 billion to KRW293.6 billion in the next three years.
KOFIC is also planning to create a system which will use 25% of its support program budget for below-the-line wages, and to make sure the investment funds KOFIC has taken part in support the due payment of staff and crew before all else in an effort to ameliorate the currently poor treatment of below-the-line staff and crew.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism announced investment of a total of USD 274 million, with a special focus on the animation sector of USD 67 million out of this pot, into the local cultural and content industries between 2009 and 2013.
Ellen Pittleman, http://hybridentus.com, is a veteran studio executive based in Los Angeles. Most recently, she served as SVP, International Co-Productions and Worldwide Acquisitions for Paramount Pictures. She also launched the DVD Premiere group there, with films including Jonathan Demme’s “Neil Young: Heart of Gold” and the sequel to the $100MM+ “Save the Last Dance.” Working from a marketing and distribution perspective, she consults on strategic planning, deal negotiation, acquisitions, film library valuation and feature development with clients from Rio to London to Beijing. She’s also currently developing a feature on George Foreman’s comeback years, among other projects.