26 Aug 2020: Korea: 'Tenet' fares well, but coronavirus forces theaters to close
However, the box office run for this film and all other films currently screening in Korea stands to be brief because of coronavirus, again.
Since the first sighting of a fresh COVID-19 case in Seoul, the government has tightened regulations on public gathering, and Tenet stands to lose.
Pandemic: Seoul reported fresh case of COVID on August 14
A fresh case happened on August 14 in the capital and since then, South Korean government has imposed stringent social distancing norms. An indoor public assembly of only 50 is allowed.
This proves disastrous for Tenet, which had its commercial debut in Korea.
It released on Saturday and earned $368,000. Next day, the film screened in around 590 screens and earned another $347,000.
Analysis: This is why Korean films did much better than 'Tenet'
Tenet's revenues stood second to Korean film Deliver Us from Evil, which enjoyed over twice the screening at the same time.
Considering box office revenues from Friday to Sunday, Deliver Us from Evil and Korean comedy OK! Madam earned $1.41 million and $812,000 respectively.
This happened since Korean films had a far bigger reach in screening, as compared to Nolan's spy film.
Context: Aftermath: Premiere of Korean films 'Fukuoka,' 'The Golden Holiday' canceled
Apart from the limited screens, government's decision to shut cinemas from August 24 also served a big blow to Tenet.
As social distancing has been beefed up, outdoor public gathering is capped at 100 people in Korea.
Consequently, premiere of Korean films Fukuoka and The Golden Holiday stand canceled.
The Korean Film Council also stopped distributing discount vouchers, which were intended to encourage movie-goers.
Response: Meanwhile, reviews of 'Tenet' are out. So how are they?
Meanwhile, reviews of Tenet are out before its US release, and they are mixed.
The British Blacklist has called the film "monumental," stating that's "the maximum of director Nolan's ability".
Others have been impressed by the IMAX cinematography.
Los Angeles Times feels it "lacks a certain living spark," while BBC says "it has to be worth a trip to the cinema."