How One Producer Drives Change With Boys’ Love Drama ‘Semantic Error’
SJ “Sinxity” Shin knows firsthand the power of entertainment to influence positive change. For 10 years, he was the CEO of AXIS CCP, the starting point for major k-pop artists such as BigBang, BlackPink, 2NE1, Winner, and Ikon, and he worked as a creative director at YG Entertainment. During his tenure at YG, Shin helped introduce audiences around the world to the wonders of his k-pop. Some of his best memories from his time at YG have to do with the artists he helped produce and promote.
Shin said, “It’s the debut performance of WINNER, BLACKPINK, IKON, Akdo Musician, and Lee Hi. It’s a great moment for me personally.”
With his new company, Shin’s creative endeavors have expanded into other forms of entertainment such as popular boys’ love dramas. Semantic error. As Executive Producer, he was instrumental in adapting the popular Manta Webtoon into a drama starring singer-actor Park So-Ham and DKZ’s Park Jae-Chan. The drama aired on his OTT platform Watcha in South Korea and became his most popular OTT content across all platforms in South Korea in the second week of March 2022.
For those of you who haven’t seen boys love or BL dramas, it’s a very romantic homosexual story.It’s a storytelling tradition that dates back to the Japanese manga niche known as yaoi, but since the 70s, the genre has gained popularity around the world. Although BL dramas are centered on male relationships, there are many female writers and many female fans. According to Singh, one of the reasons for the popularity of BL dramas is that he meets the demand for fresh and diverse storytelling.
“There are already a lot of hetero-romance movies and dramas out there,” Shin said. I think it’s really fresh for them.”
Dozens of BL dramas are produced each year in Thailand and Taiwan. There are several mainstream Korean dramas such as Itaewon class When Reply 1997, 2020 drama delves into LGBTQ issues Your Eyes Ringer Considered by many to be Korea’s first BL series. light on me Following 2021, semantic error Singh emphasizes that BL dramas are a unique genre that distinguishes them from other gay romance stories.
“Recently there was a strange drama from Netflix. unbound,” he said. “I really liked the Neil Patrick Harris and Darren Star drama. A drama is a kind of fantasy, a world where characters love each other whether they are boys or girls.”
Characters in BL dramas live in a world without the problems many LGBTQ people face, especially in socially conservative countries. When he auditioned for the BL series, Park Jae Chan was advised by his management not to accept the role as it could negatively affect his career. , his role as over-managed programmer Joo Sang-woo boosted his popularity. Strengthened the career of Park So-ham.
This year, the environment for actors who are worried about queer roles in BL dramas has changed. semantic error,‘ said Shin. “The actors who played these two weren’t very famous prior to the drama. Former Instagram followers semantic error It was about 6K and 5K, but semantic error, they have 907K and 667K followers. It really increased. Also, one of his actors is a member of the K-pop boy idol group DKZ. Package sales of their albums have really grown.Previous semantic error Their sales were reaching 4K or 3K and now they are reaching 100K. Therefore, many producers in the k-pop industry and management recognize that being in a BL drama is really great for an artist’s fandom. As such, these decision-makers are more receptive and willing to reach out to their fans through these dramas. “
The drama’s success didn’t just influence decision-makers in the entertainment industry. Shin said it could also affect South Korean politics, where progress in social acceptance of homosexuality has been slow.
“In 2020, an artist named Holland was the first k-pop singer to openly come out as gay,” Singh said. “Twenty years ago there was an entertainer named Hong Seok Chan, but in those twenty years there was no star who openly disclosed their sexuality. Now we have a political party talking about gay marriage. Before this kind of movement there was no discussion of it, but now on the political side they are talking about gay marriage.
AXIS CCP has more drama.
“On the production side of AXIS, we are planning to launch a new BL project this year,” Singh said. “To be exact, we will be launching a drama label, Blue by Blue. We are planning to launch a new project. I want to be very open about being in a relationship, so I’m not going to label it as BL any more.
What Singh finds most satisfying about working in the entertainment industry is the ability to deliver messages that resonate on an emotional level.
“At the end of the day, we want to create great content that inspires people and gives viewers another perspective. I witnessed how the global perspective on artists and content changed dramatically, and it was very inspiring for me and everyone who worked there. semantic error We have to change public opinion on LGBTQ issues. After the success of , slowly people’s perceptions are changing. Semantic error. As someone who works in the entertainment industry, I know that the soft power of content to change people’s opinions and perspectives is immense. “
Rather than taking an activist approach to fighting for queer rights, Shin chose, as a producer, to focus on the beauty of the characters’ relationships. There are still places in the world where people cannot love freely.
“We still have a lot of problems to solve,” he said. “So I want to keep using my energy to create meaningful content.”
semantic error Airs on Viki.com.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/joanmacdonald/2022/09/18/how-one-producer-promotes-change-with-boys-love-drama-semantic-error/ How One Producer Drives Change With Boys’ Love Drama ‘Semantic Error’