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Korea gets Criminal Justice from BBCS

Ben Whishaw in the original Criminal Justice

South Korea’s Studio M has agreed a deal to adapt BBC Studios (BBCS) drama format Criminal Justice for the local market.

Created by writer Peter Moffat (Cambridge Spies, The Village), the show follows a young man’s ordeal after he is accused of a murder he cannot remember committing. The original UK version starred Ben Whishaw (Skyfall).

The Korean version will be directed by Myoung Woo Lee (Backstreet Rookie) and written by Soon Kyu Kwon (Warrior Baek Dong Soo).

Coproduced by Studio M, Chorokbaem Media and Gold Medalist, the adaptation will star Soo Hyun Kim (It’s Okay to Not be Okay) and Seoung Won Cha (A Korean Odyssey). A local broadcaster has not yet been revealed.

The scripted format has already been produced in the US as an HBO miniseries titled The Night Of, starring John Turturro and Riz Ahmed.

It has also been adapted in India for Star Media’s Indian SVoD platform Hotstar, whose version was in the top five dramas of the year across all platforms in India in 2020. A French adaption is currently in production for TF1.

Andre Renaud, senior VP of global format sales for BBCS, the commercial arm of the UK pubcaster, said: “The dual stories of crime and punishment that are explored in Criminal Justice remain universal and, at its heart, bring to life the test of one person’s humanity inside a system they can’t fully understand.”

Jino Yoo , president of Studio M, added: “BBC Studios formats have proven that they can be successfully adapted for the South Korean market and we believe that Criminal Justice is the next big hit.

“It’s a gripping drama, with twists and turns that will keep audiences on the edge of their seats, and we can’t wait to bring the creative skills of Myoung Woo Lee and Soon Kyu Kwon to this local adaptation.”

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