Why are Korean TV drama’s 100% pre-produced?
If you follow the news regularly about Korean TV drama’s. then you have noticed that more and more Korean TV drama’s are 100% pre-produced. The reason why Korean production companies are making a TV drama 100% pre-produced is because of Chinese TV regulations. Since China has become the most important market for Korean TV drama’s, Korean production companies have no choice then to make a TV drama 100% pre-produced. For example, popular Korean TV drama Descendants of the Sun broadcasting rights have been sold to China for 250.000 US Dollar for each episode.
All the TV drama episodes need to reviewed by a Chinese TV department in order to be aired at the same time in South-Korea as in China. If a Korean TV drama is not aired at the same time (same day) in China, then Chinese companies are not willing to pay a lot of money for the broadcasting rights, because most people in China then have watched the Korean TV drama episode illegally elsewhere.
The positive side is that actors and actresses are most likely have more rest because of this rule. The possible downside is that spoilers could be leaked on Chinese social media or even real whole episodes could be leaked. That happened before to a Chinese TV drama, a lot of episodes have been leaked online before the official broadcast date.