The numbers are in for the box office and Seo Ye Ji‘s movie, Recalled is doing well for itself.

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Poster for “Recalled” | CJ CGV

On April 21, the Korean Film Council released the numbers for the box office ticket reservations and in a surprising turn of events, Recalled has taken first place. At 34.4%, the film surpassed the highly anticipated movie, Seobok featuring Gong Yoo and Park Bo Gum, which came in second at 32%. It was also further revealed that there were 33,012 ticket purchases made in advance for the film, Recalled.

Experts are calling the surprising victory of Recalled a “noise marketing success” after the numerous controversies surrounding the main female lead, Seo Ye Ji.

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Seo Ye Ji in “Recalled” | CJ CGV

The actress was previously embroiled in several different controversies, including school bullying, plastic surgery rumors, boyfriend manipulation, and verbal abuse towards staff members. She had just begun to experience top-notch popularity after her breakout role in It’s Okay to Not Be Okay when these controversies broke out.

Seo Ye Ji skyrocketed in fame, snatching endless endorsement deals and casting offers for future projects following her breakout role. However, this all changed when the sudden rumors began to circulate about her and fellow actor Kim Jung Hyun, exposing alleged manipulation and gaslighting tactics. This began, what seemed to be a never-ending snowball effect of the negative allegation after allegation made towards the actress. Ever since the controversies began, the actress has been remaining quiet and out of the spotlight. It was reported that she dropped out of her drama, Island and cancelled press conference appearances.

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Seo Ye Ji and Kim Jung Hyun in “Stay With Me” | EVR Studio

With the negative limelight and the impending release of Recalled, many wondered about her new film and how it would perform in theaters. According to the numbers provided by the Korean Film Council, however, it seems that the bad press towards the actress played in the film’s favor. While the movie has begun to receive 1-star reviews on different media sites, it’s hard to deny that the “noise marketing” tactic may have worked, whether it was positive or not.

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Seo Ye Ji (left), Kim Kang Woo (right) at “Recalled” press conference | CJ CGV

The mystery thriller film, Recalled follows Soo Jin (Seo Ye Ji) and her life following her life-altering accident. After her accident, Soo Jin not only loses her memory, but suddenly gains the ability to see the futures of people. This new ability brings her face-to-face with a unknown truth about her husband, who is played by actor Kim Kang Woo.