The South Korean box office reached almost 50% of pre-pandemic levels in the first half of 2022, according to a new report from the Korean Film Council (KOFIC).
The total box office for the first six months of the period of the year was $345.7 million, equivalent to 48.7% of the same period in 2019.
Compared to the first half of 2021, ticket sales increased by 143%. Admissions increased by 124.4% to 44.94 million.
Box office receipts have accelerated sharply in South Korea since pandemic social distancing restrictions were eased on April 18. Since April 25, moviegoers have been allowed to eat and drink in theaters.
The easing of restrictions helped the May-June period see a return to pre-pandemic ticket sales.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness opened on May 4, followed by The roundup May 18. KOFIC noted that the combination of Marvel and Korean crime action films helped the box office recovery.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness took $47.8 million and came in at number two overall at the first half box office.
the roundup, starring Don Lee – also known as Ma Dong-seok – was the first film to surpass 10 million admissions (the local measure of a blockbuster) since the pandemic began in 2020.
Following The Outlaws, starring Lee as a “beast cop” solving crimes and bringing justice to Vietnam, topped the box office with $96.13 million and 12.22 million admissions in the first half alone. To date, it has accumulated more than 12.65 million admissions.
Jurassic World: Domination, which cost $22.2 million, The Witch: Part 2. The Other ($19 million) and Top Gun: Maverick ($17.7 million) all opened in June. Overall box office sales reached $120.7 million in June, on par with pre-pandemic levels.
Local films, which had their worst year in a decade in 2021 with just 29.7% market share, have risen to take 50% of box office sales.
Disney leads the distributor rankings with ticket sales of over $56.5 million, taking 16.3% market share with 14 titles including the strange doctor film.
Among distributors, Megabox Plus M came in second after taking $54.6 million and 15.8% of the total box office with local films such as The roundupwhich he co-distributed with ABO Entertainment, and Kingmakerwhich cost $5.57 million.