Like it or not (and judging by social media comments, there are plenty of people not happy about this), “Parasite” is being adapted for American TV audiences courtesy of director Bong Joon-ho, Adam McKay, and HBO. But according to a new interview with Deadline, Bong wants everyone to know that the idea for a “Parasite” TV series isn’t something that a greedy producer or studio proposed to him. In fact, the idea for the expanded version of the film is something that the filmmaker proposed first.
“The ‘Parasite’ series idea was something I actually suggested myself. It wasn’t an offer that came to me, for a remake or anything like that,” explained Bong. “I told the producers at CJ from the very beginning that I would eventually like to make a limited series because when I was writing the script, I had so many hidden stories in my iPad. Accumulated ideas that I couldn’t convey in a two-hour film.”
But even though this is clearly a limited series going to a premium TV network, Bong doesn’t really think of it as a TV show. He said that it’s really “a high quality five- or six-hour film.” And that’s the direction that he’s moving in with McKay and HBO.
As far as those aforementioned ideas clogging up his iPad? Bong teased a few that we might see expanded upon in the upcoming series.
“Well, for example, you remember the moment—and this is a spoiler—where the original housekeeper comes back in the rainy night, and her face is full of cuts and bruises?” he explained. “The movie never fully explains that, but I have two or three stories already about that in my mind. Also, there’s a very strange relationship in the film between the original architect of the house and that housekeeper. Why did the architect only tell the housekeeper about the bunker in the basement? Maybe something happened between them. I have so many ideas like those, as an example. I really wanted to expand the story, in a deeper and more meaningful way, and I think for people that have already watched the movie, they will be surprised by the many revelations there are still to come, that are buried within the detail of the movie. So, look forward to it [laughs].”
As for his involvement in the series, Bong is toying with the possibility of directing an episode, but he thinks that his role will be more behind-the-scenes as a producer and someone that helps with the story.
“There’s a very small chance that I’ll direct an episode of the TV show,” he said. “We’re currently searching for other directors. My role is more as a producer. I will be involved in the story, but I won’t be on set much, managing things. My priority is always feature films. I’m currently working on two scripts right now, which are in the very early stages. I haven’t been able to work much on them because of the awards campaign.”
Obviously, there’s no word on when “Parasite” might debut on HBO, but clearly, it’s something that is happening sooner rather than later.