“Squid Game” creator Hwang Dong-hyuk has revealed that he named the characters in his phenomenon series after his true friends.
Squid Game has not yet revealed all its secrets, as confirmed by the creator of the phenomenon series Hwang Dong-hyuk in an interview with our colleagues at Hollywood Reporter. Asked about the unprecedented success of his series, the filmmaker returned to the genesis of the program, and in particular the astonishing origin of the names of the main protagonists.
Several times in the past, Hwang Dong-hyuk has identified himself with the main character of the series Seong Gi-hun, not hesitating to draw a parallel between his own existence and that of the protagonist. But during this new interview, the South Korean director revealed a completely unsuspected autobiographical significance in Squid Game.
The names of the characters Seong Gi-hun, Cho Sang-woo and Il-nam are those of my friends. Cho Sang-woo is a childhood friend of mine, who I used to play with in my neighborhood alley. There are others: Hwang Jun-ho and Hwang In-ho are also inspired by people around me. Hwang Jun-ho is a friend of mine and Hwang In-ho is his older brother, as is also the case in the series.
Like Gi-hun, the director also experienced a period of financial difficulty that forced him to return to live with his mother. A multitude of autobiographical details have also made it possible to tie up the plot and the personality of the characters of Squid Game.
The characters in Gi-hun and Sang-woo are pretty much inspired by my own life. Like Gi-hun, after the failure of my first film, I had no income and was financially supported by my mother. (…) And like Sang-woo, I went to Seoul National University, one of the most prestigious in South Korea, and I was the subject of a lot of expectations from members of my family, but also a lot of jealousy around me.
Series Squid Game can be found now exclusively on Netflix.