KMovie #SlowVideo [Article Translation] 64 pages to define profit alone… what a greedy foreign movie studio?

Korean title: [연예기자24시]수익 정의 계약서만 64장, 돈독 오른 외국영화사라고?


[Economic Daily Star Today Jin hyeon-cheol reporter] According to 유재혁, the CEO of the production company “Our happy youthful days”,  the portion of the contract defining the meaning of “what is profit” reaches about 64 pages. The production company “Our happy youthful days” filmed the movie “Slow Video” starring Cha Tae-Hyun, Nam Sang-mi.

These pages constitute only a minor portion of the contract with 20th century Fox which is a major Hollywood distribution studio and had funded the whole movie project. Considering the effort put into just the definition alone, it is clear that the agreement regarding profit sharing would be more complex. The production company was required to write the names and job description of all the people who are on the credits in the contract. It was insisted by 20th century Fox.

Picky? Yes.

If it was just a Korean movie, the contract including all provisions would only be 12 pages long. However, in America, the contract practices are more thorough. This should not be called greedy. Rather, it is to avoid possible future disputes.

$5 million dollars are not being invested by the studio on a whim. This is not done with a handshake and a tap on the back. It was the same for the producers of “Slow video” who looked at the contract closely also. Once the contract was mutually satisfactory, the movie began filming and now it is waiting on its October 2nd release date.

While I cannot remember the exact date when this happened but the size of Korean movies are now huge. Movies with large budgets have garnered the love of the audience and the money making train which are Korean movies seems unstoppable. However, I slight miss step cant easily lead to bankruptcy. While the quality of Korean movies has increased, not all movies are good movies. There are actually many movies that crashed and burnt even with a huge budget. Honestly, there are many voicing the opinion that the market is not healthy.

In any case, with the increase of quality and size of the Korean movie market, the interest from overseas have increased. Not only are they interested in distributing movies overseas, their interest evolved into direct investment. While there are negative views regarding this direct investment approach, it can also be viewed as evidence that Korean movies are that competitive in the international movie scene.

In the case of 20th century Fox, they invest in stories that they view as possible cases for American remakes. Depending on the box office results within the Korean market, they could react and develop their strategy for the domestic market.

“Slow Video” is a movie in which a protagonist with highly developed eye sight and CCTV as a subject matter is combined to create a melodrama. In response to this uniqueness, 20th century Fox is even thinking of making an American remake. When the subject comes up in discussion, they are very verbal about the possibilities. There are also rumors of Sony Pictures, another major Hollywood distribution company, thinking of entering the Korean market via the direct investment route. It is clear that the world’s interest in the Korean movie market has increased.

This also a good opportunity for production companies, directors, actors, and etc. The director, Kim young-tak, was able to more confidently tell his story with the backing 20th century Fox who believed in his script than what would have been possible with a Korean distribution company. The production company also got a second chance after the movie, “Idiot”, failed at the box office.

Cha Tae-Hyun and Nam Sang-mi are also satisfied with the movie Cha Tae-Hyun said that he likes this movie two times more than the director’s previous movie, “Hello Ghost”. This can be viewed as proof that the movie was not made just to satisfy 20th century Fox.

However, the interest of 20th century Fox is not directed to the benefit of Korean movie industry as whole. If the revenue does not satisfy, it is clear that this interest will die out. It would not be a surprising event if this investment is a one shot deal. However, at this point, 20th century Fox’s interest in the Korean movie market is high.

Even though “Yellow sea”, which they partially invested in, and “Running man”, which they financed the whole thing, did not make much impact at the box office, 20th century Fox still financed “Slow video” and “The Wailing”. In addition, 20th century Fox is financing “My devoted villains” by Director Lim Sang-soo which is currently in pre-production I wish that these directors do not approach these movies with a complaisant attitude. Thankfully, while they do not look like huge money makers, the outcomes of these movies look promising at this point.


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