Netflix unveils 17 new Asian originals
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Rebecca Hawkes
| 09 November 2018

A total of 17 new Netflix productions from across Asia have been announced by CEO Reed Hastings as part of the streaming giant’s first Asian showcase in Singapore.

The new projects join 100 new and returning originals across eight countries in Asia during 2019.

Of the confirmed projects, one includes the second season of Korean drama Kingdom (pictured), whose first series doesn’t stream globally until 25 January 2019.

The series combines historical period drama and zombie action thriller. It is set in Korea’s medieval Joseon period where a crown prince is sent on a suicide mission to investigate a mysterious outbreak. What he uncovers threatens the kingdom.

“Asia is home to the world's great creative centres producing some of the most compelling films and series of today,” said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer, Netflix.

“The beauty of Netflix is that we can take never-seen before stories from South Korea, Thailand, Japan, India, Taiwan or elsewhere, and easily connect them to people all over Asia and the world. More than half of Asian content hours viewed on Netflix this year are viewed outside the region, so we have confidence that our upcoming slate of Asian productions will find fans in their home countries and abroad,” added Sarandos.

Titles such as crime thriller Sacred Games from India, Japanese anime series DEVILMAN crybaby and South Korean variety comedy Busted have proved successful with viewers around the world this year, the company said.

Among the newly announced Japanese productions is an anime series of Pacific Rim and the epic battle of Kaiju and Jaegers will expand on the story of the first two live action films. The Legendary Entertainment-produced series will follow two siblings - an idealistic teenage boy and his naïve younger sister - who are forced to pilot an abandoned Jaeger across a hostile landscape in a desperate attempt to find their missing parents.

A new anime feature, Altered Carbon, is set in the same universe of the Netflix live-action sci-fi series – whose second season is currently in production from Skydance Television. Written by Dai Sato (Cowboy Bepop, Saurai Champion) and Tsukasa Kondo, it will be produced by animation studio Anima.

As for Chinese language productions, the Taiwanese original series Triad Princess concerns Angie who, growing up in the shadow of her Triad father, craves an independent life of her own. Defying her father's wishes, she takes on a gig as an undercover bodyguard for a famous actress at an agency, where she must navigate the unfamiliar world of glitz, glamour and even love. Starring Eugenie Liu and Jasper Liu and directed by Neal Wu, it will be produced by mm2 and Goodfilms Workshop.

Thai drama The Stranded is another Netflix original, in which 18 year old Kraam survives a devastating tsunami along with 36 of his fellow students at a private high school on a remote island in the Andaman Sea. As mysterious events start happening on the island, it quickly becomes clear that no one is coming to rescue them and Kraam must lead the students to rescue themselves. Directed by Sophon Sakdaphisit, it is produced by GMM Grammy and H2L Media Group.

Other newly announced titles include the Manga series Cagaster of an Insect Cage, Japanese fantasy drama Yasuke, supernatural thriller Trese from the Philippines, and Thai teen mystery Shimmers.