Seeing Yoo Ah-in‘s movie Wandeugi a.k.a. Punch climb up the charts has been quite an exciting thing. At least for me. And perhaps other fans of his, especially our lovely Haveners. Since its release in October 20, 2011, Wandeugi was the hottest ticket in town in the second half of 2011. For the first five weeks since its initial release, Wandeugi managed to claim the first place spot. Those five weeks alone managed to rake in over 4,2 million tickets, which, in the Korean movie business, is a lot. On average, the movie brought in 800,000 moviegoers, with a peak in week 3 with over 1,1 million tickets sold in a single week. The movie remained strong in the sales department even in its 6th week, with 4,745,131 tickets sold in total.
This week, though, the movie has to give up its reigning champion seat to a recently released movie, SIU, starring Uhm Tae-woong and Joo Won. The detective movie knocked Wandeugi by approximately 60,000 tickets. But don’t despair. Wandeugi still sold strong despite its second place spot, with 288,874 sold in the weekend of 25-27 November 2011.
So why has Wandeugi managed to remain strong for so many weeks? Well, first of all, it’s been a slow season for Korean cinema. The last big hit was the runaway hit, Arrow: The Ultimate Weapon which earned an impressive 7,457,902 tickets in its three months run. Arrow and Wandeugi actually “faced” each other in the end of October, although it wasn’t a fair match for Arrow which was nearing its ending run in the theaters.
Second, the movie was unique in capturing the lives of the minority Korean: the disabled, the expats. I for one can not say for myself that this is true, because I haven’t watched it, but from what I heard it’s a heartwarming story. It’s different than the movies screened in the same time frame, which consisted mostly of romantic movies, dramatic or comedy.
Third, the impressive cast. The movie consists of heavyweight Kim Yun-seok who has a resume consisting of some of Korea’s most impressive movies, including The Chaser (2008) and Tazza: the War of Flowers (2006), and of course Yoo Ah-in, who was the running success from 2010’s Sungkyunkwan Scandal. Their names alone can bring masses, but of course their charisma and chemistry was what hit the home run.
If anyone didn’t know about this yet, apparently Mr. Yoo is going to post a video of him singing (with a dance and a music video I heard? Is this true?) on his Twitter when the movie hits 5 million. This will definitely be interesting to see because only just recently Mr. Yoo posted a more intimate and quirky side of him through the social media. When that day comes and the video comes out, be sure to come here to YAI Haven because I’m pretty sure we’ll be
spazzing reporting about it.
On a related note, for those who live in the US, well lucky for you! Wandeugi will be screened in CGV cinemas. For more info, click here. If anyone of you is watching it, it’ll be great if you tell us all about it!