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Oscar-winning 'Parasite' tops Japanese box office

(Yonhap)
(Yonhap)

The Oscar-winning film "Parasite" topped the Japanese box office over the weekend, becoming the most-watched Korean movie in the neighboring country in 15 years.

According to Japanese box-office tracker Kogyo Tsushinsha, director Bong Joon-ho's black comedy "Parasite" stood atop the box office for the Saturday-Sunday period in Japan. The war film "1917" placed second.

"We are calculating its exact box office revenue for the weekend," the film's Japanese distributer, Bitters End, said.

"It is the first Korean film to rise to No. 1 on the box office after debuting at No. 5."

Japanese news reports said later the South Korean film earned about 300 million yen ($2.73 million) in ticket sales over the weekend to take the top spot.

Its accumulated box office revenue came to 2.49 billion yen as of Sunday, according to the reports.

"Parasite" made its Japanese debut on Jan. 10 in fifth place but soared to the top last week when it won four Oscar titles, including best picture.

It is the first time that a South Korean film has placed first at the Japanese box office since 2005, when the melodrama "A Moment to Remember" achieved the feat.

"A Moment to Remember" (2004) starring Jung Woo-sung and Son Ye-jin, is the highest grossing South Korean film in Japan, earning 3 billion yen (US$27.3 million), followed by "April Snow" (2005) with 2.7 billion yen and "Windstruck" (2004) with 2 billion yen.

Meanwhile, "Parasite," a parable of two families at the extremes of society, has been on a roll in the United States thanks to the Oscar boost.

It raked in $5.5 million over the weekend, up 234 percent from the previous week, with its total gross reaching $43 million stateside.(Yonhap)

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