Windstruck, director Kwak Jae-young's follow-up to hishit romantic comedy My Sassy Girl,has set a new box office record for a Korean film in Japan. Released by WarnerJapan on 300 screens on December 11, the film recorded $17.65m (Y1.8bn) on 1.37million admissions as of January 16.
Reuniting Jun Ji-hyun andJang Hyuk, the stars of My Sassy Girl, the film is a bittersweet love story about a policewoman (Jun) whofalls in love with a high school teacher (Jang) she mistakenly arrests forpurse-snatching.
The 2001 My Sassy Girl was a hit in Japan, but its box office take did notapproach that of the previous record holder, the political thriller Shiri, whichpassed the Y1.8bn mark in 2000.
Windstruck has attracted the previous film's fans,including the millions who rented it on video or DVD. But the core audience,says Warner publicity rep Ryo Kosugi, has been "dating couples in theirteens and twenties" who saw it on their winter break from school."It's very similar to the audience for Crying Out Love In theCenter of the World," addsKosugi. The biggest Japanese hit of 2004, Isao Yukisada'sweepyabout a tragic teenage love affair grossed more than $80m, while generating aboom for so-called "pure love" (junai) dramas, including Windstruck.