DramaFever, a U.S.-based video-streaming service specializing in Asian pop culture and other international fare, signed a multiyear pact with CJ E&M — South Korea’s largest entertainment conglomerate — for distribution rights to top-rated K-drama series and movies.
The deal covers eight exclusive Korean TV dramas, including current hits “Oh My Ghostess” and “My Beautiful Bride” (starring Kim Mu-yeol and Lee Si-young, pictured above), as well as at least 10 exclusive new feature films plus more than 350 hours of other drama and variety programs.
Under the pact, DramaFever has U.S. and Canada distribution rights to the programming, with some titles extending into Latin America, along with rights to redistribute through Hulu and Apple’s iTunes.
“DramaFever has established itself as a go-to destination for fans of K-dramas, and is an ideal home for our series and films,” CJ E&M America CEO Mark W. Shaw said in a statement.
DramaFever, founded in 2009, offers a library of 700 titles comprising some 15,000 episodes, many of which are available to viewers on first-run, same- or next-day basis from original broadcast. The content is available to watch for free with ads, with subscription services without any ads available starting at $4.99 per month (or $49.99 per year).
DramaFever is marketing the new content from CJ E&M at KCON 2015 USA, billed as covering “all things Hallyu.” The Korean music and pop-culture convention — which runs in L.A. July 31-Aug. 2 and in Newark, N.J., on Aug. 8 — is expected to draw more than 40,000 fans. The OTT company is the event’s exclusive drama-category sponsor.
Last fall, Japan’s SoftBank Group acquired DramaFever for a reported $100 million. SoftBank is now seeking to sell the company, with prospective buyers said to include Warner Bros. and Barry Diller’s IAC, according to recent reports. (SoftBank declined to comment on a potential sale.)
New York-based DramaFever syndicates a portion of its library via Hulu, Netflix, Amazon and iTunes, claiming to have an overall reach of more than 20 million unique monthly viewers.