Squid Game creator denies accusations of plagiarism

Squid Game creator denies claims of plagiarism for the show's first episode

Hwang Dong-hyuk, the creator of Squid Game, has come forward to deny claims that the hit Netflix TV series plagiarised the 2014 Japanese horror movie, As the Gods Will. In a press conference, as per Metro, the director stated that despite the release dates, in terms of showing a deadly version of the children’s game – Red Light Green Light – Squid Game “did it first”.

Since releasing back in September, Squid Game has quickly taken the streaming service by storm, and its viewing figures are reportedly on track to overtake Bridgerton as Netflix’s most-watched show. The thriller series follows a group of debt-ridden contestants who play childhood games with a deadly twist in the hope of winning a huge cash prize.

In the first episode of the series, viewers saw contestants participate in a game of Red Light Green Light against a giant doll. Many viewers quickly pointed out the similarities between the episode’s premise and Takashi Miike’s cinematic adaptation of the manga series As the Gods Will. As the Gods Will revolves around a group of high school students who are forced to participate in games with a losing penalty of death, and the first game in the action movie is none other than Red Light Green Light.

However, despite the similarities, Hwang Dong-hyuk said that he had been working on the script for Squid Game six years before Takashi Miike’s thriller movie was released. “It is true that [the first game is] similar, but after that, there aren’t any similarities,” the director explained. “I worked on [Squid Game in] 2008 and 2009, and at the time, the first game [had already been] fixed as Red Light Green Light.”

“It’s not really something that I want to do, to claim ownership of this story,” he continued. “But if I had to say it, I would say I did it first.” Plagiarised or not, there is no diminishing Squid Game’s mass appeal and success. Currently, we are still waiting on details about Squid Game season 2. So far, Hwang has hinted that for the next instalment, he wants to explore the police in the context of the survival story.

While we wait for more updates about the popular show’s future, fans can now watch all nine episodes of the first season of Squid Game on Netflix. If you are after more dystopian thrillers, here is our list of the best sci-fi series of all time.

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Emma-Jane Betts

Staff Writer

Updated: Oct 07, 2021


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