K-Pop agency SM Entertainment announces global search for UK boy group

They are looking for the next boy band to ‘entertain the world’. K-pop powerhouse SM Entertainment and London-based production company Moon&Back Media are launching a talent search to create a UK boy band that will also be the subject of a TV show.

The TV series will follow the evolution of the rising boy band over the course of six months, starting in London in early 2024. The series’ executive team includes James McKinley (X Factor, America’s Got Talentt), David Hall (Deal or No Deal, The Chase, The Greatest Dancer) and music industry executive Ben Carter.

The unique partnership between South Korean and British companies is being hailed as one of the first of its kind. SM Entertainment has played a central role in catapulting the careers of numerous global pop groups, including NCT, aespa, SuperM, Red Velvet, RIIZE, and more.

“This collaboration marks our first footprint in Europe. Our expansion plan will continue to cover the Americas, Europe and other key markets, leveraging SM Entertainment’s huge roster of artists and extensive networks for unprecedented synergies going forward,” said Kakao Entertainment America CEO Joseph Chang (Jang Yoon- jung), according to the music business around the world.

The collaboration comes as the South Korean entertainment agency continues to expand into global markets and build on the success of its artists. In August 2023, she opened an integrated North American division with Kakao Entertainment to promote SM’s girl groups IVEIVE, Aespa, and boy group NCT.

Meanwhile, English production company Moon&Back Media was founded by BAFTA-winning producer Nigel Hall (X Factor, Got Talent and One Direction), UK media executive Dawn Airey (C4, C5, ITV, Sky, Getty Images) and talent manager Russ Lindsay (Ant & Dec, Simon Cowell). The company recently secured an investment from Endeavor-backed Asylum Entertainment Group in September 2023.

“Take one of the world’s best entertainment producers and combine him with the world’s best K-pop producer and watch the magic happen. This is a world first, creating a British boy band and exposing them to the wonders and rigors of the premium K-pop process with SM Entertainment,” added Dawn Airey, Co-Founder, Moon&Back. “This alchemy will create compelling television and a boy band that will entertain the world.”

The untitled series is currently in pre-production and will be filmed in both the UK and South Korea.

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