Coupang Play's new original sitcom 'Unicorn' shows chaos and comedy of K-start-ups
"When everyone says no, K-start-ups say yes," reads the punchline on the poster of Coupang Play's upcoming original sitcom series "Unicorn."
“Unicorn” is set in a small Korean start-up company called Maccom and revolves around various chaotic yet comedic episodes that occur inside the company.
“It’s about the various struggles and failures that the CEO and employees of Maccom face, many of which they fail,” said the show’s director Kim Hye-yeong, laughing, during the sitcom's press conference at Conrad Seoul in Yeongdeungpo District, western Seoul, on Monday. “The charm of the characters comes through as they team up to find their way out of the mess and overcome failures."
Kim is best known as the co-creator of JTBC’s rom-com series “Be Melodramatic” (2019).
The show’s writer, Yoo Byung-jae, said that he started on the script for “Unicorn” last year when his manager told him funny stories that took place at his start-up company.
Yoo debuted as a writer on tvN’s “Saturday Night Live Korea” in 2012. He is also known as a local TV personality, appearing as a regular panel on MBC’s reality show “The Manager” (2017-).
Actor Shin Ha-kyun portrays the sitcom's lead named Steve, the CEO of Maccom.
Debuting in 1998, Shin rose to stardom through the action-thriller film “Joint Security Area” in 2000, which is based on the Korean War (1950-53). “Unicorn” is Shin’s first try at the sitcom genre.
“I was drawn to my character Steve because of his naivety that one wouldn't expect from a man his age,” said Shin. “He is slightly odd but very funny, and actually a very warm person."
Shin said that while the series is a sitcom, "it isn’t just all laughs."
"There are sincere and heartwarming scenes as well.”
Writer Yoo said that he cannot imagine anyone else playing the character of Steve other than Shin.
“I am a big fan of Shin Ha-kyun myself, and some of Steve’s lines and scenes were inspired by Shin Ha-kyun,” he said.
Actors Lee Joong-ok, Shin Ha-kyun, Kim Young-a, Bae Yoon-kyung, Won Jin-ah, Kim Wook, Lee Yoo-jin and Bae Yoo-ram all play employees at Maccom; and actor Heo Jun-seok portrays Steve’s rival and a CEO of another start-up called Magenta.
Yoo and Kim emphasized the “cuteness” of all characters, saying that they wanted all the actors to be seen as their most adorable selves.
“We expect the audience to discover the cute and lovely sides of all the actors on our show” said Yoo.
“Unicorn” premieres Aug. 26 exclusively on Coupang Play. New episodes will be released every Friday at 8 p.m.
BY LEE JIAN [firstname.lastname@example.org]