The hype may have died down, but the mark on history is now indelible, with Bong Joon-ho and his South Korean movie “Parasite” now the first non-English movie to win Best Picture at the Academy Awards (in addition to Best Foreign Feature, Best Original Screenplay and Best Director for Bong). In addition to the accolades, the film has also done well in the Asia-regional box office for a start. It is therefore expected that many other movie hounds would be interested in watching “Parasite” on streaming. While it would be nice if the movie was made widely available, exclusivity is the game these days, with “Parasite” going to one platform.
Variety tells us that Disney overall has taken charge of streaming rights for “Parasite,” the little South Korean black comedy film that could and did win a Best Picture Oscar earlier this month. To be specific, the streaming rights for this film have been given exclusively to Hulu, originally a multi-company joint venture but now majority-owned by the House of Mouse. Under their full control the streaming service has been pushed as an alternative platform for viewing digital content not fitting the family-friendly image of Disney, such as “Parasite” now.
CJ Entertainment, which produced and released “Parasite,” first granted overseas rights to distribute the movie outside South Korea to Neon, an independent studio. Hulu in turn struck a licensing deal with Neon, back in 2017 and lasting multiple years, wherein all the latter’s distributed movies will find an exclusive streaming home with the former after their premieres in cinemas, including Bong Joon-ho’s masterpiece now. Neon also saw good returns from their theatrical and digital releases of “Parasite” in North America, especially after its Academy Award victories spurred greater viewer interest.
The highly-recommended movie by Bong Joon-ho chronicles the parallel lives of two families in Seoul, one wealthy and influential, and the other not. The poor family pulls a con to have its members be employed by the rich family, passing themselves off as unrelated strangers with professional credentials. What follows is part comedy of errors and a grim darkness said to reflect the income disparity of Koran families today. Such a plot would not fly for a streaming on Disney’s recently-launched Disney+ service, so it going to Hulu is understandable, seeing as eventually the last original joint partner Comcast/NBCUniversal will be selling its share to Disney for its complete ownership.
Hulu will start streaming “Parasite” this coming April 8, 2020.
Image courtesy of Business Mirror