Netflix Picks Up 'Love Alarm' as First South Korean Original

'Love Alarm' Netflix SK - Publicity - P 2017
Courtesy of Kye Young Chon

Korea's Hidden Sequence will produce the series based on the popular online comic strip by Kye Young Chon.

Netflix announced on Thursday its first South Korean original series, Love Alarm, based on the comic strip by one of the country's most popular graphic novelists Kye Young Chon. This marks the latest screen adaptation of a "webtoon" or comic strips published online that have inspired many film and TV drama remakes.

The 12-episode series is set to debut in 2018 and will be produced by Jaemoon Lee from the newly formed production company, Hidden Sequence. Lee was previously involved in several award-winning South Korean drama series including the police drama Signal and office drama An Incomplete Life (a.k.a. Misaeng), both of which have a passionate following by K-drama fans around the world.

Love Alarm is one of the most popular webtoon series in Korea. The story revolves around an unknown developer who releases an app that will tell the user if someone within 10 meters has romantic feelings for them, and the new technology greatly disrupts society.

"We want Love Alarm, the TV series, to exhibit the liveliness and expression of emotions, with visual treatments that will reflect Ms. Chon's vision when she created the story," said Lee in a statement.

"It is an honor for Netflix to collaborate with a great storyteller like Ms. Chon and a visionary producer like Mr. Lee for our very first Korean original production. Working together, we look forward to transforming this wildly imaginative story into a top-quality drama series for over 86 million Netflix members around the world," said Erik Barmack, vp international originals at Netflix.

Chon has been one of Korea's most popular graphic novelists since her debut in 1996. Her major works include Unplugged Boy, Audition, Girl in Heels and Beautiful Man. Chon is still continuing a prolific career today, in the era of webtoons, expanding her career into the web platform from comic books, and her recent series Love Alarm is considered the biggest hit since her debut.

Love Alarm will premiere exclusively on Netflix to its members in 190 countries.