Comedy -action movie “Sinkhole” lifted the South Korea box office over the weekend with a $5.58 million start in theaters.
The debut was the highest weekend score this year by a local Korean movie and trailed only “Black Widow” and “F9.” It was achieved from a launch on 1,604 screens according to data from the Korean Film Council’s Kobis tracking service.
The disaster film was the second directed by Kim Ji-hoon, who previously made another in a similar vein “The Tower” in 2012. It tells the tale of a massive man-made disaster which swallows up a multi-story building and the people in it.
Including traffic from the Wednesday release, the film has a five-day cumulative score of $7.77 million, making it already the eight highest grossing film of the year in Korea.
The strong start lifted the nationwide weekend total to $10.4 million, the second highest weekend of the year. Previously, “Black Widow” grabbed $8.88 million in the first weekend of June, to take 80% of the $11.0 million weekend total.
“Escape From Mogadishu,” playing for its third weekend, fell from first to second place. It recorded $2.85 million, for a cumulative of $19.1 million. That is the second highest gross of the year by any film, behind the $25 million of “Black Widow.”
“Free Guy” opened in third place with a weekend score of $934,000 and a9% market share. Its five-day total added up to $1.37 million.
“The Suicide Squad” slipped to from second to fourth place with a 78% tumble in its second week. It earned just $367,000 and has a disappointing cumulative of $3.43 million since if Aug. 4 release. “Boss Baby: Family Business” took $217,000 for a $6.86 million cumulative.
While having two local films on top of the weekend charts is considered good news locally, recent figures from cinema chains show the financial pain suffered by Korean exhibitors.
The country’s largest operator, CJ CGV reported an operating loss of KRW57.3 billion ($49.9 million) over the April-June period, down from a loss of KRW130.5 billion in the same quarter of last year. Number two, Lotte Cultureworks lost KRW24 billion (down from KRW51 billion. J Contentree, operator of the Megabox chain, saw losses increase from KRW14 billion to KRW18.7 billion.