CJ ENM – Going for More
BY Stanislav Kimchev
In just a few years, Korean giant CJ ENM has established itself firmly on the international TV scene thanks to its hit series and big entertainment shows. But more is coming in 2024 as CJ ENM’s Head of Global Marketing Sehee Jang tells Stanislav Kimchev.
Sehee Jang, CJ ENM Head of Global Marketing
CJ ENM is one of the leading entertainment companies, established in 1995. You offer a vast portfolio of scripted and non-scripted content. What are the main threats and opportunities for your company nowadays as a producer and distributor of K-Content and can you talk a little bit about the far-reaching implications of K-Content to other industries in Korea?
We proudly insist that the scripted content of the Korean series has gained recognition as top-notch content in the global entertainment industry. With this constant syndrome, from now on, we believe non-scripted content can grasp much more opportunities in the global market. Korean entertainment shows possess undeniable strength to provoke excitement among global audiences with their exciting and diverse formats.

For instance, the format of I Can See Your Voice has been remade and aired in approximately 30 countries, and Jinny’s Kitchen has been serviced in Prime Video while being loved and praised by global viewers. Like these titles, the popularity of Korean entertainment shows is growing more than ever, which seems to overwhelm the popularity of K-POP, K-dramas, and K-movies.

Specifically speaking, the entertainment shows of CJ ENM are receiving a positive and profound reputation regardless of age and cultural differences, through providing refreshing excitement. CJ ENM plans to further dedicate to producing and distributing much more diversified Korean entertainment shows and focus on enhancing the productive growth of the Korean entertainment show business in the global industry.

To what do you attribute the huge success of Korean content around the world, both scripted and non-scripted?
The Korean show business has achieved numerous amounts of development in manifold fields; playwrights, producers, cast, and staff, based on the accumulation of an unrivaled number of experiences and techniques. With solid collaborations with global partners, the supremacy of Korean content has now been recognized not only within the Asian market but also in the global industry. Thanks to our aspiration to develop and demonstrate storytelling methods that can evoke sympathy among viewers from different backgrounds, assisted by splendid production skills, well-made content has been produced.

Jinny’s Kitchen

Furthermore, the development of the Korean show business has positively affected the training of cast and production staff. A lot of talents with prominent capacities and the production staff receiving global recognition have been discovered. To illustrate, Korean actors, staff, and the director of Squid Game have been awarded the prestigious Emmy Awards, and other global award ceremonies are spotlighting the excellence of Korean show business. Thus, we believe the staff with strong competency and the mastermind originating from such talent have influenced the Korean shows’ quality, which in the end has addressed the global success of the Korean content business.

You have most recently announced partnerships with companies from Thailand, the Middle East, you also have been cooperating with US entertainment giants. Have you planned new partnerships for next year and entering new territories, for example Latin America?
Latin America is an undeniably important market for us. We put strong efforts into selling diverse romance and family-themed series in the Latin American region, considering the viewers’ preferences. We especially concentrate on satisfying Latin American audiences by providing Spanish-dubbed content, unlike other markets. For next year, we aim to increase the number of dubbed content to provide various Korean series for the Latin American market.

What are CJ ENM’s latest hit titles and which of your shows have been sold into the highest number of territories?
CJ ENM is continuously selling both scripted and non-scripted titles. Based on strong partnerships with various global OTT services, such as Netflix, Prime Video, and Disney+, we desire to service the well-made titles of CJ ENM in the global market. To demonstrate, one of our non-scripted titles, Jinny’s Kitchen, has been globally serviced in Prime Video, and recently, the spin-off series Jinny’s Kitchen: Team Building has also been released globally. Furthermore, the romance series My Lovely Liar has been introduced to global audiences via local streaming platforms and was ranked 1st in more than 141 countries through Rakuten Viki.

My Lovely Liar

CJ ENM also operates Korea’s leading streaming platform TVING. What is your streaming strategy, have you planned expanding TVING’s footprint and closing similar deals to that with Paramount?
TVING’s original series are now being introduced to global audiences through Paramount+. Bargain, for example, was named as the most-played title in 26 countries, including Canada, Australia, Brazil, Germany, and France, in which Paramount+ is being offered. Moreover, according to Flixpatrol, on October 12th, the title was ranked 1st in the TV show category in Paramount+. Being aligned with this phenomenon, Bargain has won “Best Screenplay” in the 2023 Canneseries, along with the “Critics Choice Award” in Seriencamp 2023, held in Germany. In addition, the show has gained global recognition by earning a nomination for the “Best Foreign Language Series” at the 28th Critics Choice Award. The viewers will be introduced to much more TVING original series via Paramount+.
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