SOUTH KOREA — Riding the K-Wave, Netflix recently hosted “See What’s Next: Korea” to amplify and bring the spotlight on the upcoming slate of films, series, and stand-up comedy specials from the country, that are set to come out into the world stage.
Netflix VP of content Minyoung Kim announced that as of the end of 2020, Netflix had 3.8 million paid memberships in Korea. Highlighting their continued investment in the Korean creative community, Kim shared that in 2021, the team will spend nearly 500 million USD on Korean films and series.
Netflix also announced two new original Korean films, Moral Sense and Carter that are expected to drop this 2021. Here is a blog post from VP of content Minyoung Kim about Netflix Korea in her own words.
She wrote, “The K-Wave, or Hallyu as we call it here in Korea, is a huge moment of national pride and we’re proud to be part of it. Great Korean stories are nothing new, in fact storytelling is deeply rooted in Korean culture. But today we live in a world where Parasite is an Academy Award Best Picture winner, BlackPink plays Coachella, and over 22M households tune into a horror TV series, Sweet Home. Audiences around the world are falling in love with Korean stories, artists, and culture.”
Korean Slate to Watch out for in 2021
- Moral Sense follows a seemingly clean cut office worker who keeps his BDSM taste to himself, until his female co-worker accidentally opens his mail and finds a leash. Once his secret is out, the two develop into a male-sub and female-dominant relationship. The film will be directed by Park Hyun-jin (Like for Likes).
- Carter follows a man after he wakes up in a motel room with no recollection of who he is, except for a voice in his ear that calls him ‘Carter.’ Following the voice’s orders, Carter goes on an exhilarating mission to save a kidnapped girl. A one-scene, one-cut action film directed by Jung Byung-gil.
- Move to Heaven revolves around the routine of a pair of trauma cleaners. The series is directed by Kim Sung-ho (How to Steal a Dog).
- D.P. is based on the webtoon by Kim Bo-tong and follows the story of army private Joon-ho who suddenly ends up becoming a member of the “Deserter Pursuit” unit that tracks down military deserters and encounters the realities of confused young soldiers. The series is directed by Han Jun-hee and stars Jung Hae-in, Koo Kyo-hwan, Kim Sung-kyun, and Son Seok-koo.
- Squid Game depicts a story of people who decide to become the players of a mysterious survival game that has a whopping 40-million-dollar prize at stake.
- Hellbound is a series about a smart, self-assured lawyer who goes up against the New Truth Church and its extremist Arrowhead devotees. Directed by Yeon Sang-ho (Train to Busan, Peninsula) and written by Yeon and Choi Gyu-seok, author of the popular webtoon Songgot.
- The Silent Sea follows members of a special team sent to an abandoned research facility on the moon. Set in a future earth that has undergone desertification, the series stars Bae Doona, Gong Yoo, and Lee Joon.
- All of Us Are Dead follows a group of students trapped in a high school who find themselves in dire situations as they seek to be rescued from a zombie invasion of their school. The original series stars Yoon Chan-yeong, Park Ji-hu, Cho Yi-hyun, Lomon, and Yoo In-soo.
- My Name follows a mobster’s daughter named Ji-u when she joins a cartel and becomes a mole in the police force to seek the truth behind her father’s death. The series is directed by Kim Jin-min of the acclaimed series Extracurricular.
- So Not Worth It follows the youthful adventures of students with multicultural backgrounds in a college dorm. Created by Kwon Ik-joon and stars Park Se-wan, Shin Hyeon-seung, Choi Young-jae of K-pop group GOT7, Minnie of the K-pop girl group (G)I-DLE, and Han Hyun-min.
- Kingdom: Ashin of the North: This special standalone episode from the Kingdom universe shares the backstory of the mysterious character Lee Chang’s group encountered on their journey north to discover the origins of the infected.
See what’s next on Korea from Netflix here: