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“INSIDE THE SQUID” Presented by Professor Kyung H. Kim (Zoom)

November 30, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Location: Zoom Videoconference

Join us for this live webinar on Tuesday, November 30 at 7 PM EST

We welcome back Professor Kyung Hyun Kim, filmmaker, scholar, and writer, who will discuss and explore the popularity behind Netflix’s new blockbuster series, Squid Game. (Image credit Guardian.com)


In Korea, a particular type of comedy variety show has become quite popular in recent years. These productions typically feature a pack of male performers in front of a camera in a public space, before dispersing to change into track suits and play silly playground games such as hide-and-seek, capture-the-flag, rock-paper-scissors, wordplay, and pass-the-cellphone. Reflective of this trend is Netflix’s hit series Squid Game, a horror drama version of these Korean comedy shows. The nine-episode Korean drama-thriller Squid Game strips away the comedic veneer of adults playing children’s games by instead fictitiously tricking debt-ridden desperate men and women to take part in literally deadly competitions derived from the same childhood game. Professor Kim will discuss how Squid Game propels the Korean game show format into the dystopian world of neoliberal capitalism that it seeks to critique. His talk will discuss a range of topics, from the success of Squid Game and the socioeconomic background of these cultural products to Korea’s emergence as a global pop juggernaut.

Professor Kyung Hyun Kim is a creative writer, a scholar, and a film producer, who is currently a professor in the Department of East Asian Studies, UC Irvine. He has worked with internationally renowned directors such as Hong Sang-soo, Lee Chang-dong and Marty Scorsese, and also with American film producers Jason Blum and Steven Schneider. Professor Kim is the author of the recently published book Virtual Hallyu: Korean Cinema of the Global Era, as well as The Remasculinization of Korean Cinema, Hegemonic Mimicry: Korean Popular Culture of 21st Century (all Duke University Press), and a Korean-language novel entitled In Search of Lost G (Ireo beorin G-reul chajaso, 2014) about a Korean mother combing the US in search of her missing son during his junior year in a Massachusetts prep school.  His recent article analyzing Squid Game was recently written for foreignpolicy.com https://foreignpolicy.com/2021/10/09/squid-game-netflix-south-korea-capitalism/?tpcc=recirc_trending062921



He has coproduced and co-scripted two award-winning feature films: Never Forever (2007, Sundance Film Festival’s U.S. Main Competition) and The Housemaid (2010, Cannes Film Festival Main Competition), and his co-scripted film screenplay, The Origins of a Detective (Hyeongsa eui kiwon), won the cash prize by being selected for the 2019 Best Film Development Project by the Korean Film Commission. He has also written The Mask Debate, his first theatre screenplay, which premiered in February 2021 through UCI’s Illuminations: Chancellor’s Initiative in Arts and Drama YouTube channel.


November 30, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
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