A second season of bilingual series “Dramaworld” takes to the airwaves across Asia from this week. The show is a fantasy about an American K-drama fan-girl who is supernaturally transported into the Korean drama scene and there must save her favorite leading man.
In Korea itself “Dramaworld” will play from Friday on A+E Networks’ Lifetime Korea channel and on the CJ ENM-backed streamer TVing. In Hong Kong, Taiwan and Southeast Asia it will play out on the international service of Chinese streamer iQIYI, while in Japan its home will be the country’s number three streamer U-Next.
In its first iteration, as a web drama with mini episodes, the show played from 2016 on Netflix and the Rakuten-owned streamer Viki.
Now presented as a long-form drama, the series was written by Josh Billig and Chris Martin, with Martin directing all episodes. Production was through Korean-American company Third Culture Content and Raemongraein a.k.a. RMRI.
Both seasons of the show have previously been represented by Endeavor Content. A+E Networks International now holds all distribution and remake rights within Asia.
The second season has a beefed up international cast including Ha Ji-won (“Empress Ki,” “Secret Garden,” “Duelist”) and K-pop star-turned actor Henry Lau (“A Dog’s Journey”), Liv Hewson (“Bombshell,” “Santa Clarita Diet”), Sean Dulake (“Dramaworld,” “Operation Chromite”), Justin Chon (“Gook,” “Seoul Searching”), Brett Gray (“On My Block”), Bae Nuri (“Cheat on Me, If You Can”), Jung Man-sik (“Vagabond,” “Asura”), Choi Myeong-been (“My First Client”), and Daniel Dae Kim (“Lost,” “The Good Doctor”).
The show filmed in South Korea at the height of the global COVID-19 pandemic between March and May 2020. Dulake (co-owner of Third Culture) and Martin say that they acted like independents and determined their own anti-virus production protocols. And, because streets were largely empty at the time, they were able to shoot over 100 locations in and around Seoul.
Coming after its 2020 series “Backstreet Rookie,” A+E pitches “Dramaworld” as its second Korean scripted production since expanding in the territory in 2017. It will be launching it at the upcoming MipTV. “A+E Networks has been aggressively producing original content for both television and digital in close collaboration with world-class production and platform partners since launching in South Korea,” said Soh Youngsun, GM of A+E Networks Korea.