Korea seeks to adopt ceil­ing on movie screens dom­i­na­tion

The Korea Times - - NATIONAL -

Korea is seek­ing to put a ceil­ing on the num­ber of movie screens al­lot­ted for a sin­gle film in a bid to pre­vent a screen monopoly by big-bud­get block­busters, the cul­ture min­istry said Mon­day.

“The Min­istry of Cul­ture, Sports and Tourism will seek a re­vi­sion of the ‘Pro­mo­tion of the Mo­tion Pic­tures and Video Prod­ucts Act’ with an eye on the adop­tion of a screen ceil­ing in order to ad­dress un­fair (com­pe­ti­tion) prac­tices in the film in­dus­try,” the min­istry said as part of a broader film in­dus­try pro­mo­tion plan.

Cur­rently, nearly 80 per­cent of movie screens na­tion­wide are con­trolled by mul­ti­plexes run by two con­glom­er­ates — CJ and Lotte Group.

This mar­ket dom­i­nance has un­fairly al­lowed one par­tic­u­lar movie, of­ten a big-bud­get flick or a Hol­ly­wood block­buster dis­trib­uted by af­fil­i­ates of the cin­ema gi­ants, to take up the ma­jor­ity of lo­cal cin­ema screens, leav­ing lit­tle chance for the cine­matic de­buts of in­die films or other works by smaller pro­duc­tion and dis­tri­bu­tion firms.

A re­vised law is ex­pected to place a cap on the num­ber of movie screens that a sin­gle film can be screened si­mul­ta­ne­ously so that a broader va­ri­ety of ti­tles could be screened.

Pre­vi­ously pro­posed law re­vi­sions put the ceil­ing some­where be­tween 40 to 50 per­cent of the to­tal screens.

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