Yes, Netflix is Working on a ‘Squid Game’ Inspired Reality Game Show, Sans Murder
Even if you weren’t among the people who contributed over 1.65 million hours of viewing squid game accumulated in its first month after the premiere, you’ve probably heard at least something about it. Now, there’s another show that might absorb and shock viewers: Squid Game: The Challenge.
The plot of squid game, for the uninitiated, essentially involves a group of hundreds of people with massive debts to pay off who all accept an invitation to participate in a “game show” to win money. They’ve been told they’ll play games for kids, but when they start playing, they learn that competitions involve fighting for their own lives and sometimes taking others’ lives, and that’s all just the sick creation of a sadist, all wrapped up in the East. Asian cultural tropes involving debt shame and late capitalism.
Now, ahead of the already green-lit second season of squid gameLos Gatos-based Netflix gives us another show that might absorb and shock viewers: Squid Game: The Challenge. Jthis one is a real-life game show inspired by the fictionalized version of its namesake – but without the murder.
Just like in the original show, there will be 456 contestants in the new version, which is what Netflix says in the biggest reality show in history. The streaming platform describes the series as “Netflix’s greatest social experiment ever”.
Netflix doesn’t say what the tournament may include, but does say some of the competitions will be inspired by the original show. Other games, he says, will be new additions.
“This oversized unscripted spectacle turns the scripted world of drama into reality. Real gamers will be immersed in the iconic squid game universe and will never know what will come next. Here they will participate in a series of breathtaking games in order to become the only survivor * and walk away with a cash prize that will change their lives, “says the US-based casting website, with a note clarifying that participants will not. actually get hurt.
Each player will fight for a prize of $4.56 million which will go to the last person standing. It’s also a record holder, taking the place of the biggest lump sum cash prize in reality TV history.
The show’s recruiting website says it’s only looking for English speakers, although contestants can come from anywhere in the world.
“The stakes are high, but in this game, the worst fate is to go home empty-handed,” the casting site explains.
The series will have ten episodes. The project is a joint venture between Studio Lambert and The Garden, and will be filmed in the UK. Netflix Vice President of Unscripted and Documentary Series Brandon Riegg said the show will be full of unpredictable twists and turns.
“squid game took the world by storm with director Hwang’s gripping story and iconic imagery. We are grateful for his support as we transform the fictional world into reality in this massive competition and social experiment,” Riegg said. “Fans of the drama series are ready for a fascinating and unpredictable journey as our 456 real-world contestants navigate the greatest competition series of all time, full of tension and twists and turns, with the biggest prize money at the end.”
squid game was also renewed for season 2. The first season was the most popular Netflix series of all time.