Nuts about ‘The Nut Job’

January 21, 2014

Starts off 3rd in the U.S. box office, raking in 20.6 million in opening weekend

A scene from “The Nut Job”

A scene from “The Nut Job”

By Park Si-soo

The joint Korean-Canadian computer animated comedy film “The Nut Job” is showing a relatively good start in the U.S. box office, coming in at third place, just behind “Ride Along” and “Lone Survivor.”

Available at more than 3,400 screens there from last Friday, the film has raked in $20.6 million, the biggest opening-weekend sales of a Korean joint-venture film in the U.S.

This is the first film computer-animated in Korea to be screened in America, according to its co-producing firm Redrover, a Korean animation producer. It will soon be screened in 120 other countries, including Korea on Jan. 29, the company said.

Nearly $40 million was invested to produce the animation by Redrover and Canada’s Toonbox Entertainment, which was directed by Peter Lepeniotis. YG Entertainment is among the co-investors, and rapper Psy appears as a character at the end of the film dancing to his YouTube smash “Gangnam Style.”

Redrover holds exclusive rights to sell the animation and its secondary products such as DVD, toy and so on.

The film’s promotional website on Facebook is flooded with messages praising it.

“My kids and I laughed and enjoyed this movie… perfect family film, I highly suggest it,” wrote Rich Croaker Sr. Jennifer Warner-Cooper said it was an “amazing” movie and she “laughed so much the ending with the dancing was so cute.”

Redrover CEO Ha Hoe-jin said The Nut Job will show Korean animation’s potential for success in the global market.

“We produced it with the aim of hitting the global market,” Ha told reporters after the film’s media preview in Seoul last Friday. “I’m confident that The Nut Job will make new history for the Korean animation industry.”

The Nut Job is an action-packed comedy set in fictional Oakton that follows the travails of Surly, a mischievous squirrel, and his rat friend Buddy, who plan a nut store heist of outrageous proportions and unwittingly find themselves embroiled in a much more complicated and hilarious adventure.