EXCLUSIVE: For the second time this week, we can reveal a milestone performance for a Mubi film, with the update that Park Chan-wook’s Decision To Leave has become the company’s most streamed film in North America.
We’re told the Cannes 2022 hit has now surpassed North America engagement for films such as Lars Von Trier’s The Kingdom, Gotham nominee Azor, Werner Herzog’s Family Romance and Terrence Malick’s Voyage Of Time.
Decision To Leave is also the company’s best-performing title on transactional platforms in the market.
Tang Wei (Lust, Caution) and Park Hae-il (The Host) star in the story of a detective investigating a man’s death in the mountains who meets the dead man’s mysterious wife in the course of his dogged sleuthing.
Voracious arthouse streaming platform and theatrical buyer Mubi kicked on a gear last year with the splashy MG it paid for all U.S., UK, India and Turkey rights to the film.
While some onlookers were disappointed the movie didn’t garner an Oscar nomination (after Golden Globe, BAFTA, Critics Choice and Gotham noms), Mubi’s release has scored Korean filmmaker Park’s best North American theatrical box office to date at $2.15M, overtaking Stoker and The Handmaiden. It is Mubi’s highest grosser and widest (169 screens) theatrical release in the region, and was the second highest-grossing non-English language film of 2022 in the territory. The Canada release was done with Mongrel.
The film’s solid box office should be balanced with the significant outlay, but there is also reputational gain for the company in being able to acquire such high-profile films from A-list directors.
The movie will soon get a re-release in the U.S. and in the UK where it took more than $1.2M (after only reaching a maximum of 163 screens). The UK re-release should push it past the filmmaker’s 2016 BAFTA winner The Handmaiden. The February 13 one-night re-launch will include a recorded Q&A between Park Chan-wook and Bong Joon Ho.
Mubi’s previous stateside theatrical releases have included The Cathedral, Great Freedom, Lingui and Azor.
Last year, Mubi released three films in the UK that crossed £1M at the box office: Aftersun, Decision To Leave and The Worst Person In The World. No mean feat for two foreign language films and a British debut.
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