Hit South Korean TV Shows to Get China, Southeast Asia Remakes

CJ E&M will co-produce successful programs with foreign partners rather than export local content.

SEOUL – South Korean entertainment giant CJ E&M will partner with Chinese, Singaporean and Vietnamese broadcasters to co-produce local versions of successful South Korean TV shows.

The joint ventures move beyond the conventional industry practice of exporting local content to foreign markets.

PHOTOS: Korea Box Office 2013: Top 10 Movies

The company will cooperate with Chinese satellite broadcaster Dragon TV for the local adaptation of Korean reality programs such as Grandpas Over Flowers and Sisters Over Flowers, in which senior actors and actresses backpack through foreign countries on a tight budget. Both programs currently enjoy a wide following among viewers in Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan.

Meanwhile, A Date With K-Pop Stars, co-produced with Singapore's MediaCorp, launched on Channel U on Feb. 21. In the travel show, Singaporean star Julie Tan introduces Korean fashion, cuisine and hot spots, and meets Korean pop icons.

In Vietnam, VTV will partner with CJ E&M for the TV drama Forever Young (working title).  The story about young students in Korea an Vietnam marks the first time a Korean broadcaster is co-producing a TV soap in Vietnam.

VIDEO: 'Frozen'-Crazy South Korea Spawns Countless K-Pop Covers of 'Let It Go'

Channel M is set to produce and broadcast the fourth season of K-Pop Star Hunt in 10 Southeast Asian countries. The K-pop audition program co-produced with Fox International Channels is the first of its kind in the Southeast Asian region, and attracts international contestants from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand and Singapore wishing to debut as artists in Korea.

"On an immediate level, our strategy in co-producing content with foreign partners is to enhance localization know-how as well as produce more attractive country-specific content," said Jey-Hyun Kim, general manager of CJ E&M's Media Business Unit.

"Looking at things long-term however we're also very excited about the potential relationships we could build now that will generate the next wave of hit Asian entertainment content that appeals to global audiences."