“Squid Game” director Hwang Dong-hyuk said that it took him almost a decade to pitch and create the K-drama series due to its “bizarre” concept.
The survival series, which aired on Netflix on September 17, follows a group of 456 people heavily in debt who play life or death games in the hopes of winning a massive cash prize.
In an interview with The Korea Times published last week, the filmmaker shared the struggles of creating series, which he said field like a “roller coaster ride.” He told the outlet that he actually came up with the concept in 2008 and wrote the script a year later, though it took over a decade for the show to finally air because of its “bizarre” plot.
“Making the story into the series was still an adventure, just as it was about a decade ago. I knew that it would be all or nothing; either a masterpiece or a quirky flop,” he told The Times. “The idea behind this work was very experimental. So I would keep on asking myself if audiences will find it convincing that the characters are risking their lives to play children’s games.”
“After about 12 years, the world has changed into a place where such peculiar, violent survival stories are actually welcomed,” he added.
Reflecting on the Netflix show’s overwhelming popularity, Hwang explained that the series expands on many familiar themes that are relevant to today’s generation and also serves as a universal story of survival.
“The series’ games that participants go crazy over align with people’s desires to hit the jackpot with things like cryptocurrency, real estate and stocks,” he said. “So many people have been able to empathize with the story.”
Hwang said that while he has a few ideas floating, he has no immediate plans to develop a second season of the show.
In case you missed it, the telephone number featured in “Squid Game” is being bombarded with late-night phone calls.