EXCLUSIVE: Netflix won the auction for the rights to make Beef, a 10-episode half-hour dramedy series from A24 that will mark Oscar-nominated Minari star Steven Yeun’s first episodic TV foray since his unforgettable exit from The Walking Dead. Yeun will star with Ali Wong in a series that is the creation of Lee Sung Jin.
Deadline revealed the project when it was pitched about a week ago, creating a frenzy among the streamers. Netflix has committed to a series order.
Beef follows two people who let a road rage incident burrow into their minds and slowly consume their every thought and action.
Wong and Yeun, through his Universal Remote banner, are executive producers. Creator-writer-showrunner Lee is co-executive producer on Dave; is producing the Alex Russell Black List script Lurker; and developed Omniverse, a pilot for Showtime with Kanye West, Jaden Smith and Scooter Braun. His credits also include the FX pilot Singularity, Amazon’s Undone, Netflix’s Tuca & Bertie and HBO’s Silicon Valley.
After a lauded turn in the Lee Chang-dong’s Cannes pic Burning, Yeun starred in A24’s Lee Isaac Chung-directed Minari, which drew six Oscar nominations including Best Picture. Yeun became the first Asian American to be nominated for Best Actor.
“Ali Wong, Steven Yeun, A24 and Netflix — it’s a dream team, and I’m honored to be collaborating with them,” said Lee. “I’m also grateful to the guy who yelled at me in traffic three years ago. I did not let it go, and now we have a show.”
Wong’s TV work includes the ABC sitcom American Housewife, Tuca & Bertie and Black Box, and she co-starred in the Warner Bros pic Birds of Prey. She starred in Always Be My Maybe at Netflix, headlined two specials for the streamer — Baby Cobra and Hard Knock Wife — and wrote the bestseller Dear Girls.
Said Jinny Howe, VP Drama Development, Original Series at Netflix: “We are incredibly excited to collaborate with Lee Sung Jin and help bring this rich series to life along with the inimitable Steven Yeun and Ali Wong. [Lee] has created a bold and at times outrageous world. It is an honest and powerful character study of two people who go about searching for connection in the unlikeliest of ways.”
A24 has been getting busier in the TV space, with Ramy, Emmy winner Euphoria, At Home with Amy Sedaris and Moonbase 8 with John C. Reilly and Fred Armisen for Showtime.
Yeun is repped by CAA and Principal Entertainment, Gotham Group and Hansen Jacobsen; Wong by UTA and Hansen Jacobson. Lee is with WME, Grandview and Hansen Jacobson.
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