Squid Game has taken the world by storm. Unless you’re living under a rock, you must have heard about Netflix’s greatest show from South Korea. The company paid $21.4 million to stream it on its platform. The show’s viewership is clocking in on two billion minutes already. It should be no surprise that the show earned almost $900 million for Netflix by now.
Since Squid Game is so wildly popular, the creator behind the show must be making bank right now, right? Well, apparently not. Hwang Dong-hyuk, the director of the show, has said that he is not rich in spite of the show becoming a worldwide success.
Dong-hyuk told The Guardian that he did not make as much money as people would expect. He added that he has made enough money to “put food on the table” but it’s not like he’s getting paid extra for the show’s success.
“I’m not that rich. But I do have enough. I have enough to put food on the table. And it’s not like Netflix is paying me a bonus. Netflix paid me according to the original contract.”
Dong-hyuk also added that he got the idea of creating Squid Game from his own financial struggles. At one point he had to stop writing the script of the show to sell his laptop for $675 in cash.
“I was very financially straitened because my mother retired from the company she was working for… I couldn’t work for about a year. We had to take out loans. I read Battle Royal and Liar Game and other survival game comics. I related to the people in them, who were desperate for money and success. That was a low point in my life. If there was a survival game like these in reality, I wondered, would I join it to make money for my family?”
Squid Game is Netflix’s most-watched show after it made its debut on the streaming platform in September. The show follows a group of people suffering from crippling debt, who get a chance to pay them off by participating in deadly children’s games to win money.
It’s no doubt that Squid Game has become a pop culture phenomenon. References to the show were used in a huge South Korean protest, and the show has got a council in England concerned too. Hopefully, they will shell out more cash for a second season.
What’s your take on this story? Sound off in the comments!