A new drama series featuring the growth story of global K-pop band BTS is under production to be aired next year, the head of the band's music label said Wednesday.
"With a view to launch it in the second half of 2020, (we) are preparing a drama series based on BTS' (musical) universe," Bang Si-hyuk, CEO of Big Hit Entertainment, said in a briefing on the firm's corporate vision.
The CEO said the drama series will go back in time to the moment when the seven BTS members first met as a team. And young actors will be cast to play the roles of the seven members as adolescents, according to Big Hit.
Bang also said the company is also in the process of launching the second mobile game featuring BTS in partnership with Korean game creator Netmarble, following the first successfully launched mobile game "BTS World."
The plans are part of Big Hit's business expansion strategy laid out during the briefing session given to its corporate partners and the media.
"The core point of Big Hit's intellectual property business rests on bolstering the brand value created by our artists, securing powerful influence and expanding it to business based on the brand," Band said, referring to the launch of the BTS-inspired mobile game "BTS World" and BTS dolls, manufactured in collaboration with American toy giant Mattel, in the first half of this year.
"Going forward, the scope of Bit Hit's brand intellectual property business will not stay only on the music front but will expand to other sectors like licenses, character businesses, games, publications, pop-up stores in order to reach out to more fans," the CEO noted, indicating that more BTS-inspired consumer goods will hit the market.
With the success of the first BTS-inspired novel, "The Most Beautiful Moment in Life: The Notes," released earlier this year, and the similar internet-based comic "Save Me," Big Hit has successfully demonstrated the high marketability of the business vision so far.
As bolstered by the solid performance by the content business, on top of record and concert ticket sales, sales of BTS reached 200.1 billion won (US$166.5 billion) for the first half of 2019, a number that is on par with the firm's annual sales in 2018, according to the CEO.
Bang also revealed his vision to "exert positive influence on society" by providing the best experiences to fans through high-quality content based on the label's artists that also include new boy band TXT, as well as girl band GFriend, whose label Source Music was merged into Big Hit earlier this year.
As the first collaboration with the new affiliate, Source Music, Big Hit will soon stage a global audition, "Plus Global Audition," to launch a new girl group, the CEO also noted.
Bang, known by his nickname, the father of BTS, also referred to BTS' on-going summer vacation. Big Hit announced on Aug. 12 that the septet will go on an extended break to recharge, the first official vacation since the band's debut in 2013.
"BTS recently went on an extended vacation in order to plan their future as creators and artists, design their vision and have time of their own," Bang said, adding that BTS will "proactively support the vision they come up with."
This photo provided by Big Hit Entertainment shows CEO Bang Si-hyuk laying out his firm's corporate vision during a briefing on Aug. 21, 2019.
Big Hit's co-CEO Yoon Seok-jun also said in the briefing that the company is planning to adopt the lottery system it is now using to distribute tickets for BTS' concert and fan meeting events in South Korea for the sales of tickets for the band's global tour concerts so that fans cut down on long hours of waiting they have to spend to buy tickets.
Going forward, Big Hit will utilize cutting-edge technologies like virtual reality, the fifth generation cellular network and artificial intelligence to enable fans to savor BTS concerts live not only in the concert venues but also in the comfort of their homes, through mobile devices or in other outdoor spaces surrounding the concert venues, Yoon said.