Steven Spielberg has been heavily criticised for suggesting that the cast of Squid Games was made up of ‘unknown people’ when plenty of actors in the series were well established.
In 2021, Squid Game became the biggest show on Netflix ever, swiftly taking the world by storm with over 111 million viewers watching the South Korean series in its first 28 days of release.
The Netflix blockbuster starred the likes of Lee Jung-jae, Gong Yoo, and Lee Yoo-Mi who have all made several big projects before the Netflix series, which follows a group of people invited to play a series of games to a win a life-changing cash prize only to find if they do not win, they die.
The Jurassic Park director praised Squid Game for being an example of a series becoming a huge global success without relying on bankable names.
According to Deadline, appearing on a PGA panel, the filmmaker congratulated Netflix on taking a risk on a series without using any ‘known stars’.
‘A long time ago it was domestic stars that brought the audience into movies,’ he apparently said.
‘Today, it’s interesting, unknown people can star in entire miniseries, can be in movies.
‘Squid Games comes along and changes the math entirely for all of us.’
Turning to Netflix’s co-CEO and chief content officer Ted Sarandos, he added: ‘Thank you, Ted.’
However, his remarks did not go down well, with critics pointing out that several members of the Squid Game cast had success long before the series.
One noted: ‘Here’s the thing. The people in Squid Game aren’t at all unknown. It’s a Korean drama with some well known actors. Maybe not to the Steven Spielberg in the US, but certainly to Korean audiences.
Someone else said they were ‘so irked by Seven Spielberg’s comments’.
‘Seriously, we Americans need to look at the world around us & stop being so full of ourselves–we’re already getting left behind in so many areas, and entertainment might be next,’ they fumed.
Others called his remarks a ‘poor choice of words’ while another wrote: ‘LOL just some of the most famous actors in Korea.’
After its huge success, Season two of Squid Game is currently in the works, obviously.
Squid Game is available to stream on Netflix.