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New South Korean Shows Introduce a Woman Traveling in Time to Save Her Favorite Star, Kid Teaming Up With a Kidnapper and a Man Who Dies 12 (!) Times

Apr 03, 2024
  • Source by Variety
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courtesy of CJ ENM



South Korean dominance shows no signs of stopping, delivering even more outrageous storylines.


In SLL’s “Death’s Game,” a Prime Video Original fantasy drama based on a webtoon, a hard-working man – “who knows how to make lemonade out of the lemons,” said sales executive Youseon Jee at Series Mania – finally reaches his breaking point. 


When he loses his home and his girlfriend, he decides to take his own life. Only to find himself in hell, literally facing Death, who presents him with 12 different lives, each facing a tragic end. If he manages to save at least one, he will be forgiven for his deed. 


While SLL will also deliver comedy “Doctor Cha” about a housewife who, having experienced first-hand how selfish her family is, decides to go back to medicine – the show is being remade in Turkey – fantasy elements can be found in several new crime shows, including CJ ENM’s “Mouse” about deadly psychopaths living in society and “Monstrous,” where a group of archeologists comes across a mysterious Buddha statue. 


“It’s definitely one of a kind. While K Content is known for its heart-warming, romcom-based series, we proudly call ourselves the mastermind of crime and mystery series,” said marketing and brand executive Allen Kim, also mentioning “Flower of Evil” where a woman starts to suspect her husband is a serial killer – the first ever K drama to be remade in India.


In a show under working title “Mudang,” Astory’s 20th anniversary tentpole project described as “hardcore action with a hint of shamanism,” in 2058, an elite combatant strives to uncover secrets related to the ‘unification’ of Korea. 


As revealed during the content showcase organized by Kocca, the company will also thrill with “Crash,” soon to be released on Disney+ and boasting the title of the first procedural about traffic-related crimes, and move with “The Kidnapping Day” – another unusual story, in which a genius child teams up with an especially clumsy kidnapper. A U.K. remake with SHUK (Studio Hamburg UK) is already in the works. 


“The title might give you the wrong idea, but it’s funny, heartwarming yet suspenseful – all at once,” said Astory’s Yeo-joo Park about this dark comedy, full of “unpredictable twists and turns.” The company is behind such hits as “Extraordinary Attorney Woo” and “Kingdom.” 


Webtoons are also a force to be reckoned with. Starting from Astory’s adaptation of “No Home,” currently in pre-production and about a group of kids finding refuge in an abandoned home, to the slate of Kakao Entertainment: the largest webtoon studio in the country, also delivering the world’s first webtoon platform. 


“Uncanny Counter” about “supernatural battles,” “Itaewon Class” – with Chinese and Taiwanese versions currently in production – “Business Proposal” and “The Drifting Brig,” set in the dystopian future where inmates are sent to a floating prison, are all around the corner, teased Jae-heon (Jake) Hwang. 


But while supernatural elements are aplenty, so is romance and, to quote Pitbull, international love. 


Raemongraein bets on French-Korean relationships in “Wedding Diary,” “The Era of Desire” and “Lee Jin.” In development, the latter focuses on the story of a 19th century dancer who fell for French consul Victor Collin de Plancy, only to become a foreigner in her own country.


Things will significantly heat up in “intense melodrama” “The Era of Desire,” where a French couple develops feelings for the same man in 1960s Korea, while in “Wedding Diary,” a French-Korean couple tries to plan their big day despite massive cultural differences and rifts in their families. 


“Our company’s name means a comforting place for dreams and people to stay. We believe that great content has the power to transform lives,” said executive producer Hee-kyoung Yun.


Finally, in CJ ENM’s latest offerings “LTNS,” selected for Busan, a sexless married couple starts blackmailing those who stray into adultery. It aired on TVING. 


“This title has everything global fans will love so much,” assured Allen Kim, also opening up about an unusual romcom “Lovely Runner” – set to air in South Korea on tvN – in which a woman finds out that her beloved A-lister has tragically died. She then wakes up 13 years earlier – when there is still time to save him.


“So cute, isn’t it? Keep an eye on it.”


Written by Marta Balaga

Link: https://variety.com/2024/tv/global/cj-enm-sll-kakao-entertainment-1235946121/

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