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S. Korean content creators poised for Hollywood

Logos of Studio Dragon, Skydance Television and Apple TV+ (Studio Dragon, Skydance Television, Apple TV+)
Logos of Studio Dragon, Skydance Television and Apple TV+ (Studio Dragon, Skydance Television, Apple TV+)

In response to expanding excitement for Korean content, particularly since Netflix’s “Squid Game” became an international sensation last fall, local content creators are being brought into the spotlight, poised to embark on Hollywood careers.

Major South Korean drama production company Studio Dragon has agreed to co-produce a drama series with US company Skydance Television for Apple TV+ in the second half of 2021.

Recognized for producing outstanding, hit dramas “Guardian: The Lonely and Great God” (2016), “Mr. Sunshine” (2018), “Crash Landing on You” (2019), “Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha” (2021) and more, which have been enjoyed by both local and international viewers, Studio Dragon became the first Korean drama production to create an American series targeted to a global audience.

Top Korean visual effects house Dexter Studios has meanwhile signed an agreement for the new project of director Tomasz Baginski, who helmed Netflix’s “Witcher,” in February.

The company, responsible for effects behind hit projects including Bong Joon-ho’s Oscar-winning “Parasite” (2019), “Space Sweepers” (2021) and “Escape From Mogadishu” (2021), is set to join Hollywood film “Knights of the Zodiac,” an adaptation of Japanese graphic novel “Saint Seiya.”

Star director Lee Myoung-woo, 50, who produced popular action comedy “The Fiery Priest” (2019) and crime-thriller “One Ordinary Day” (2021), inked a deal with the influential Creative Artists Agency in February.

Joining renowned filmmakers, screenwriters and actors like Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, Lee is expected to direct a dual English and Korean language series about a Korean American musician.
Director Lee Myoung-woo (The Studio M)
Director Lee Myoung-woo (The Studio M)

Director Lee Na-jeong, who made her name with 2019 Netflix Korean original “Love Alarm” and tvN drama “Mine” (2021), also signed a contract with Brillstein Entertainment Partners in 2021, becoming the first Korean female TV director to join the American management agency.

With the unprecedentedly strong presence of Korean content across the globe, the excitement shows no signs of dying anytime soon, as content hailing from Korea ranging from Netflix Korean originals to the latest local dramas -- SBS’ “Business Proposal,” tvN’s “Twenty-Five Twenty-One” and JTBC’s “Forecasting Love and Weather” -- continuing to mesmerize viewers through many popular streaming services.

By Lee Si-jin (sj_lee@heraldcorp.com)
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