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'Taegukgi' draws 10 million audience

2004/03/16 Source

The Korean War film "Taegukgi" has attracted 10 million viewers in the shortest time in Korean film history, announced Showbox, the movie's distributor. In just 39 days of its opening, "Taegukgi" became the second Korean film to surpass this mark, which was first broken by "Silmido" less than a month ago. "Silmido", a movie dealing with the South-North Korean conflict, broke Korea's all-time attendance record on Jan. 31, previously set in 2001 with 8.2 million viewers.

"Taegukgi", directed by Kang Jae-gyu and starring Jang Dong-gun and Won Bin, is about the fate of two brothers fighting on opposite sides of the Korean War.

Based on government figures, 10 million viewers mean that about one in three Koreans over the age of 14 have seen the movie, which was rated 15 and up.

"Taegukgi" is also the most expensive Korean movie ever made, with much of the 15 billion won budget spent on the recreation of large-scale battles previously unseen in Korean films.

Since its opening on Feb. 5, "Taegukgi" has been nipping at the heels of every box-office record set by "Silmido", which has garnered 10.88 billion viewers as of last week. Other records bested by "Taegukgi" include greatest number of screens, the greatest opening day attendance figures, and the largest number of viewers per day in domestic film.

"Taegukgi" is currently playing on 305 screens nationwide and is projected to stay in theaters at least through April, according to Park Eun-kyung, Showbox's Marketing Director.

By Warren Lee

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