Lee Byung Hun’s New Film “The Man Standing Next” Surpasses 1 Million Moviegoers

On January 24, the film “The Man Standing Next” surpassed 1 million moviegoers at the box office.

The film achieved this milestone only three days after its release, proving its popularity during the holiday period (Lunar New Year).

“The Man Standing Next” stars Lee Byung Hun, Lee Sung MinKwak Do Won, and Lee Hee Joon. It tells the story of the Director of the Korean Central Intelligence Agency (KCIA) in the period leading up to President Park Chung Hee’s assassination in 1979. It is based on the nonfiction bestseller “Chiefs of Namsan.”

“The Man Standing Next’s” accomplishment puts it on equal footing with 2019’s hit film “Extreme Job” and the recently-released “Ashfall,” both of which surpassed 1 million moviegoers in three days. However, “The Man Standing Next’s” accomplishment is notable in that it is not a comedy film released during the Lunar New Year period like “Extreme Job.” (It is widely believed that comedy films do better during the Lunar New Year.)

Part of the success of “The Man Standing Next” is that it has attracted a large audience across various age groups. As it depicts the events of 1979, there are many people in South Korea who still remember the real-life assassination of Park Chung Hee. The film, being rated 15 and up, has also attracted an audience among people who were not alive at the time of the incident but are curious about this part of history.

“The Man Standing Next” premiered in South Korea on January 22.

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