The South Korean hit series “Squid Game” has made history by becoming the first non-English TV show to earn Screen Actors Guild Award (SAG) nominations.
The Netflix show, which became a global phenomenon following its launch in September, earned nominations for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series and Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a TV Series.
Actors Lee Jung-jae and Jung Ho-yeon were also nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series and Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series, respectively.
“Squid Game” director and writer Hwang Dong-hyuk expressed his joy over the announcement of the SAG Awards nominations on Wednesday.
“Upon hearing the nomination today, I think it has to be the happiest moment since we’ve created Squid Game,” he told Deadline in an interview. “The fact [that] not just one or two leading actors were recognized, but the whole cast being nominated as the best ensemble. It brings me great joy as a director, who has cast and created the series, just being nominated.”
Lee, who has long been a huge star in Korea, attributed the recent global popularity of Korean content to the talented directors and crew members who work on the productions.
“Now, anywhere in the world, you can enjoy high-quality Korean content in terms of its entertainment value and the way it is visually appealing,” he noted. “As an actor, I can only hope that this love for Korean content will only grow stronger and continue.”
While Jung is a relative newcomer in television acting, she rapidly rose to fame as one of the breakout stars of the show. She considers her nomination an inspiration to “take more responsibility in regards to the acting community and the world.”
“It’s such an honor to be nominated by the Screen Actors Guild,” Jung added “We were just talking about how amazing it’d be to be recognized as an ensemble cast. We’ve been watching a lot of American TV and film[s] and to be one of those nominated is crazy.”
SAG members are set to cast their votes between Jan. 19-25, ahead of the 2022 SAG Awards ceremony scheduled for Feb. 27 at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.
On Jan. 9, the 77-year-old “Squid Game” actor O Yeong-su also made history when he won South Korea’s first Golden Globe in an acting category (Best Supporting Actor in Television) at the 2022 Golden Globe Awards, NextShark previously reported.