Park Chan-wook’s ‘Oldboy’ inarguably tops the list of the finest movies that South Korea has to offer.
The 2003 neo-noir action film stars the critically acclaimed actor Choi Min-sik in a story filled with vengeance, graphic violence and perversion.
As intriguing as the movie was, here are five more fascinating facts about the South Korean classic
Snowy trip to New Zealand
Director Chan-wook wanted to portray that the epilogue was taking place after some time and he opted to do it visually.
A change of seasons was the simplest way but since there was no snow in South Korea during the time of filming, the crew headed to New Zealand.
The shooting took place with borrowed goods as the crew’s luggage did not arrive with them in New Zealand.
Based on a Japanese manga series
The film was based on the manga series of the same name written by Nobuaki Minegishi and Garon Tsuchiya.
However, the movie depicted much more violence in addition to the incest storyline between Dae-Su and his daughter, Mi-do.
The octopus scene
Although plenty of scenes in ‘Oldboy’ were CGI, no special effects were used in the scene where Dae-Su devours a live octopus in a sushi bar.
What’s more shocking is the fact that Choi Min-sik is a devout Buddhist and a vegetarian in real life.
But, he still managed to finish the scene, eating four octopuses in four retakes!
The legend of Choi
The central character, Dae-Su Oh was quite demanding, having to act in every scene of the movie whether it was fighting or eating a live octopus.
So, Choi Min-sik trained for six weeks and lost twenty pounds to get in the character of Dae-Su. He also did most of the stunts himself.
The American remake
Following the film’s popularity, an American remake was made in 2013 with a stacked cast of John Brolin, Samuel L. Jackson and Elizabeth Olsen.
However, Spike Lee’s American remake made even less money than the original ‘Oldboy’ worldwide.
The remake garnered only $4.8 million compared to the original, which made $14.2 million at the box office.