How Netflix Goals to Ship the Subsequent ‘Squid Recreation’

Netflix is providing “extra thrilling exhibits” and “extra selection than ever” on the Korean entrance in 2023. With 34 titles slated for launch this 12 months, the streaming service is growing its funding within the nation, Netflix’s VP of Korean content material, Don Kang, mentioned on Saturday.

In line with the most recent obtainable figures from Netflix, the streamer has thus far invested one trillion Korean gained (over $801 million) in Korean content material from 2016, the 12 months Netflix Korea was launched, by the top of 2021.

Talking at a Q&A panel at Netflix Korea’s headquarters in Seoul, the South Korean capital, Kang mentioned he is unable to reveal “the precise determine” of how a lot cash the streamer has invested on the 34 titles for 2023. However he did say: “Sure, we’re growing our dedication and funding in Korea.”

A desk piece showcasing the top of the enormous doll featured within the “Squid Recreation” collection (left) and the Netflix brand, each seen at Netflix Korea headquarters in Seoul, South Korea. The streamer mentioned they’re growing their funding in Korean content material.
Soo Kim

In line with the VP, one of many firm’s objectives this 12 months is to provide its subscribers no less than one or two “nice Netflix unique Korean exhibits” throughout all kinds of content material and/or genres all year long.

He mentioned: “We’re very a lot dedicated to proceed bringing a wide range of must-watch content material [from Korea] to our members world wide.”

This additionally contains the “greatest that Korean cinema has to supply” in addition to even “crazier” non-fiction packages, following the latest actuality collection hits resembling Bodily: 100 and Single’s Inferno.

Following the runaway success of Squid Recreation, is the streamer now planning content material firstly with a worldwide viewers in thoughts, creating made-for-export kind exhibits geared in direction of a world viewership?

Whereas Squid Recreation resonated with viewers worldwide, Netflix’s method in direction of the greenlighting of Korean collection and their improvement stays targeted on the native viewers, Kang mentioned.

“What I genuinely consider is {that a} story must be domestically related first [before wanting to expand it to an international audience],” the VP mentioned, so “our major focus is all the time native.”

Referring to the Korean viewership, he defined: “We all know our tales and we all know what works with our members [on Netflix]. When you attempt to create a present imagining you already know your viewers…it is impossible that you will get it proper” and equally unlikely to “be very genuine to your real creativity.”

But when a neighborhood story interprets internationally, “it is proof that we share one thing common,” Kang mentioned.

“Once I see or hear folks residing on the alternative facet of the globe, laughing and crying whereas watching the identical Korean content material, that offers me a way of connection.

“It is an actual proof that though we’d dwell hundreds of miles away, we’re all only one story away from one another. It is a very very rewarding and heat feeling,” the VP defined.

Does the streamer really feel a variety of strain to observe up with one thing greater than Squid Recreation?

Kang mentioned such a strain is not new. Even earlier than Netflix, Korean content material made an impression particularly within the APAC (Asia Pacific) area. There was all the time the worry of “when is that this Hallyu [Korean wave] going to finish? Are we ever going to have the ability to produce one thing that’s as massive as our newest hit?”

The VP mentioned: “So, there’s strain [after Squid Game], undoubtedly. Nevertheless it’s a great atmosphere to really feel that strain and switch that into one thing optimistic.”

Still from
A scene from the upcoming Netflix Okay-drama “Gyeongseong Creature.”

The success of Squid Recreation and several other different Korean titles on Netflix has “opened doorways” and empowered “your entire nation and its artistic ecosystem,” Kang famous.

Netflix Korea can be dedicated to “discovering new artists, administrators, writers and expertise,” as they did with Bang Woo-ri, the director of the 2022 Netflix movie twentieth Century Lady, which was Bang’s first feature-length movie.

The corporate has additionally been providing famend Korean tv writers the house to broaden their concepts and creativity by crossing over to the streaming world, resembling Kang Eun-kyung, the author of the upcoming Netflix collection Gyeongseong Creature.

On Friday, Newsweek received a first behind-the-scenes look on the set of the period K-drama starring Park Website positioning-jun, the famed Korean actor who may even be seen within the Captain Marvel sequel later this 12 months.

Kang mentioned: “As a way to assist our creators deliver their imaginative and prescient to the display screen, we have to spend money on the ecosystem,” working with completely different companions and investing in expertise and manufacturing.

The VP mentioned: “Korea has a lot extra to supply than the historically recognized romantic comedies, there’s a lot extra creativity to be unfolded.”

Still from
A nonetheless from the upcoming Korean movie “Kill Boksoon” on Netflix. The streamer mentioned it is dedicated to deliver a wide range of “must-watch” Korean content material to audiences worldwide, embrace “the perfect Korean cinema has to supply.”