January’s box office admissions less than 40 pct of pre-pandemic levels: data

The country's box office admissions were less than 40 percent of pre-pandemic levels in January, data showed Wednesday amid a lack of box office hits. The number of moviegoers came to 7.75 million, accounting for 36.2 percent of the average January tally of 21.44 million from 2017 to 2019, according to the Korean Film Council (KOFIC). Sales came to 74.7 billion won (US$56.08 million), 42.8 percent of 174.3 billion won, the January average of the same period. Admissions and sales decreased by 3.5 million and by 49.4 billion won, respectively, compared to the same month last year. KOFIC attributed the drop to the absence of strong Korean films that could repeat the success of the historical saga "12.12: The Day," which had heated up the box office at the end of last year. It also blamed the underperformance of foreign blockbuster films, such as "Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom" and "Wish," which garnered total admissions of 870,000 and 1.4 million, respectively. In contrast, January of the previous year saw the successes of "Avatar: The Way of Water" and "The First Slam Dunk," which respectively garnered 10.08 million and 4.87 million in ticket sales. Source: Yonhap News Agency