CJ ENM, one of Asia’s leading entertainment companies and the outfit behind Bong Joon Ho’s Oscar-winning sensation Parasite, is taking a significant stake in fellow South Korean company Dexter Studios.
Founded by Kim Yong-Hwa, Dexter is the producer of numerous mega-grossing Korean blockbusters including Along With The Gods: The Two Worlds, which took more than $100m in Korea, and its 2018 sequel Along With The Gods: The Last 49 Days, which grossed north of $90M in its home market. Its most recent in-house production was disaster movie Ashfall, which has grossed $60M locally.
The company is also one of the leading visual effects makers in the region, with credits including the 2013 comedy Mr. Go, for which they created a gorilla that becomes a Korean baseball star, and more recently effects work on Parasite and Burning.
CJ is buying a significant part of the company to become its second-largest shareholder; the two outfits have signed an MOU for the deal. They intend to blend their combined expertise across production, distribution and VFX to expand Dexter’s reach around the world across film, TV, VR and AR.
Parasite has grossed a phenomenal $210M globally, $73M of which came in its home market Korea, where it was released by CJ.
“CJ ENM, the leader of Asia’s entertainment industry, is the most suitable strategic partner for Dexter Studios for expanding its global reach across its film, television and interactive platforms. Dexter Studios has made its mark in visual effects expertise through the success of Along With The Gods franchise and Ashfall. We will become a global studio making exceptional high-end content with the close-knit partnership with CJ ENM,” said Ryu Chun-ho, CEO of Dexter Studios.