SEOUL, March 17 (Korea Bizwire) – It’s conventional wisdom in the film industry that R-rated movies are not an ideal choice for film distributors as they lose a big chunk of the moviegoers aged below 18. However, the recent success of a series of R-rated movies such as the superhero hit Logan is seeing the industry move away from the stale notion that R-rated movies aren’t profitable.
Since its release in South Korea on the 28th of February, nearly two million people (1.9 million) have watched the last Wolverine movie starring Hugh Jackman, as the actor departs from his 17 years with the X-Men franchise.
Although the other Wolverine movies have never been R-rated, director James Mangold explained the justification for Logan’s rating in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter earlier this month.
“For me, getting the studio to agree to rated R is also when the movie stops being about the four boxes. The movie stops being a vehicle for moving merchandise.
“No one’s watching the film through the prism of a 9-year-old or a 12-year-old and hoping to be able to sit through this six-minute scene between Charles Xavier and Hugh Jackman.”
Logan is the highest-grossing film of the Wolverine series with a worldwide box-office gross of over 430 million dollars.
Some movie critics suggest the success last year of another R-rated superhero film, Deadpool, paved the way for the latest Wolverine movie.
In Korea, a similar trend is being observed in the movie industry. ‘Prison’, a new South Korean crime movie coming to cinemas next week, doesn’t shy away from violence and blood, and has naturally been rated R by the Korea Media Rating Board (KMRB).
Prison went into production with the understanding of going R-rated in order to properly depict the dark side of Ikho — one of the main characters — according to a source close to the film crew.
In 2015, one of the biggest hits at the South Korean box office was local crime thriller “Inside Man,” which attracted over 9 million viewers.
“R-rated movies are disadvantaged in terms of profit, but since the success of Inside Man, there is confidence that if the content is great, R-rated movies can be successful, too.”
“We now have a wider film audience with a taste for different styles and plots,” a source close to a major film distributor said.
Hyunsu Yim (firstname.lastname@example.org)