Disney to Produce Three Projects Featuring K-Pop Supergroup BTS

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Disney and K-Pop supergroup BTS are getting into business together.

The Walt Disney Co. and BTS’ studio home Hybe revealed a new global content partnership Tuesday that will see the companies work together to produce five titles for Disney’s streaming services, including three exclusive projects featuring BTS or BTS members. Aligning itself with the world’s most popular K-pop group is undoubtedly a coup for Disney as it seeks to both ramp up global subscriber counts and catch up with Netflix as a destination for bankable Korean entertainment.

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The three forthcoming titles featuring the K-pop stars include:

BTS: Permission to Dance on Stage – LA: An exclusive cinematic 4K concert film featuring BTS’ live performance in Los Angeles’ Sofi Stadium in November 2021. Performing Billboard hit songs “Butter” and “Permission to Dance,” this was the first time in two years since the pandemic that the band met fans in person.

In the Soup: Friendcation: An original travel reality show with a star-studded cast including V of BTS, Itaewon Class’ Park Seo-jun, Parasite star Choi Woo-shik, Park Hyung-sik and Peakboy. The show features the five friends venturing on a surprise trip and enjoying a variety of leisure and fun activities.

BTS Monuments: Beyond the Star: “This original docuseries follows the incredible journey of 21st century pop icons BTS,” says Disney. “With unprecedented access to a vast library of music and footage over the past nine years, the series will feature the daily lives, thoughts and plans of BTS members, as they prepare for their second chapter.” The show will be available exclusively on Disney’s streaming services in 2023.

“We are thrilled to be collaborating with Hybe to showcase their original content created with powerful artist IP on our global streaming services including Disney+,” said Jessica Kam-Engle, Disney’s APAC head of content. “This collaboration represents our creative ambition — to work with iconic content creators and top stars in Asia Pacific so their talent can be enjoyed by mainstream audiences in multiple ways. We believe these new titles will captivate consumers worldwide and look forward to introducing more music content on our service.”

“This will be the start of a long-term collaboration, where we present worldwide audiences a wide range of Hybe content for fans who love our music and artists,” added Park Ji-won, CEO of Hybe. “The Walt Disney Company has a long history of franchise building and promoting musical artists, with its unparalleled brands and platforms.”

Since its launch in South Korea in November 2021, Disney+ has been busily building out its slate of K-drama content, following the trail blazed by Netflix — and Squid Game — of leveraging the category’s global popularity to build subscribers throughout Asia, South America and everywhere. The streamer previously said it would release over 20 Korean titles this year, including at least 12 Korean originals. The company’s most popular original to date has been Snowdrop, featuring Jisoo, a member of K-pop girl group Blackpink.

BTS revealed earlier this month that they intend to spend the current phase of their career focusing on solo projects — a transition group members initially described as a “hiatus.” Hybe later clarified that the group very much remains together, despite their interest in individual endeavors, and that BTS’ seven members would continue to take part in group activities. It appears that the forthcoming Disney+ original, BTS Monuments: Beyond the Star, will explore some of the nuances of this new chapter for the pop icons.

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