Even Oscar-Winning Movies Can't Lure People out of Homes

  • By Song Hye-jin

    February 19, 2020 12:39

    Not even films that were either nominated or won this year's Academy Awards have been able to tempt Koreans out of their homes amid the coronavirus scare.

    It seems people are simply avoiding crowded places as the infection continues to spread, while director Bong Joon-ho's film "Parasite" is dominating cinema news and theaters after its Oscars triumph.

    On Monday, theaters nationwide drew some 210,000 viewers, which is only the half of the usual average.

    But "Jojo Rabbit" by Taika Waititi, who won the Oscar for best adapted screenplay, opened on Feb. 5 to little enthusiasm and continues to fare poorly at the box office. It drew positive reviews from those who did go to see it, but word of mouth had little effect on cinema chains.

    "Little Women," which was nominated for best picture, best actress, best supporting actress and best adapted screenplay, has fared no better, drawing only 513,207 moviegoers in its first week here.

    Oscar-nominated art films such as "Pain and Glory" by Pedro Almodóvar and "Corpus Christi" by Jan Komasa did even worse, drawing only 27,954 and 4,912 viewers since their release last week.

    A staffer at theater chain CGV said, "We hope that the premiere of '1917' will draw more viewers" since that is a simple-minded, gimmick-based spectacle that translates easily across borders. 

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