‘SNL Korea’ Revived As Original Series At Coupang Play

“SNL Korea,” a Korean localized version of long-running U.S. sketch comedy and variety show “Saturday Night Live,” is confirmed to return for a tenth season from this summer.

NBC Universal previously announced plans for a revival in February.

Production is underway following an agreement between NBCUniversal Formats, part of Universal Studio Group, and Coupang Play, the streaming platform launched at the end of last year by e-commerce leader Coupang. “SNL Korea” will be Coupang Play’s first entertainment original.

Nine previous seasons ran between 2011 and 2018 on CJ ENM’s tvN. They were produced by CJ ENM, Astory, Broadway Video and SNL Studios.

The new season will comprise ten hour-long episodes produced by Astory (“Kingdom,” “Cheat On Me If You Can”) and see the return of host Shin Dong-yeob (“Big Forest,” “Hello Counselor,” “Mom’s Diary: My Ugly Duckling”). Ahn Sang-hwi (“Pegasus Market,” “Life Bar,” “Rude Miss Young-ae”) returns as lead producer, working alongside directors Yu Seong-moh and Kwon Seong-wook.

With the backing of Japan’s Softbank, which continues to be a major shareholder, Coupang was launched as an e-commerce service nearly eleven years ago. Powered by ultra-fast delivery, it has grown to become Korea’s largest and launched on the New York Stock Exchange earlier this year.

It launched SVOD service Coupang Play in December last year, built partially on the assets of defunct Asian regional streamer Hooq. (Other parts of Hooq’s Mauritius-based IP library were acquired by Singapore-based 108 Media.) Coupang Play subscription is included as part of a package available to members who subscribe to Coupang’s premium delivery service.

The original U.S. version has run for 46 seasons over more than 40 years. It is produced in association with Broadway Video for NBC by creator and executive producer Lorne Michaels. The SNL format has been adapted in territories including China, Japan, the Middle East, France, Italy, Poland and Brazil.

“ ‘SNL’ is the global brand of reference in topical comedy entertainment and has proven to be platform-defining in multiple territories, for both free TV and streaming services,” said Enrique Guillen, executive VP, international strategy at Universal Studio Group.


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