It took all of ten years, but Korea is finally getting its first outer space sci-fi blockbuster with Netflix’s newest offering, Space Sweepers.
In a press conference on Tuesday, Director Jo Sung-hee shares he first heard stories of space sweepers from friends more than a decade ago, and he has been trying to develop the idea for a film since then.
Even the movie’s lead, hallyu star Song Joong Ki (Descendants of the Sun), first heard the movie’s visionary idea from the director himself when they were both working on the movie “A Werewolf Boy” back in 2012. He says he has been looking forward to making the film with Jo since then, and he expressed his interest to go onboard even before reading the entire script.
“Back then the story was a bit different, but when I heard the new story from Director Jo, I was shocked, because it was so new and fresh,” Song shares.
Song is joined by fellow hallyu star Kim Tae-ri (Mr. Sunshine), together with Jin Seon-kyu and Yoo Hae-jin. English actor Richard Armitage (The Hobbit) also joins the cast.
Space Sweepers is set in the year 2092, when the earth is barely habitable and humans have started to live in space. It tells the story of a crew of misfits aboard Spaceship Victory that live off salvaging space debris. In one particular debris chase, the crew finds a 7-year-old human-like robot and tries to exchange her for a hefty ransom.
When asked what are some of the challenges they encountered in shooting the film, Song shares a particular scene in the movie when the whole crew is outside of the spaceship doing repairs.
“That was quite tough because it had to do with the loss of gravity, that was something new and challenging. But then again, amazing preparation went into the scene, and it was really satisfying,” Song explains.
Kim, on the other hand, shares her excitement over what the film has accomplished for South Korea: “This film is very Korean, and I’m excited to see what other sci-fi films will come out of Korea. I’m proud to be part of the team that made this.”
While she did mention that she was “sad” that the film will not be shown on the big screen, Kim remains “happy and grateful” that people all over the world can stream the movie via Netflix.
Space Sweepers will be available on Netflix starting February 5.