National Post (Latest Edition)

You’ve reached the wrong number

- Sangmi Cha

SEOUL • A South Korean woman who was deluged with thousands of prank calls and text messages after her phone number was highlighte­d as a key plot point in Netflix’s hit show Squid Game could soon get relief.

Netflix and local production company Siren Pictures said Wednesday they would edit scenes to remove the phone number, which appears on a mysterious invitation card given to potential players of a series of deadly children’s games.

The nine-part thriller depicting cash-strapped contestant­s playing to the death in a bid to win millions became an internatio­nal hit last month.

Local broadcaste­r SBS aired an interview last month with the owner of the phone number, identified as Kim Gil-young, a woman who runs a business in the southeaste­rn county of Seongju. She showed some of the messages she had received, including requests for invitation­s to join the Squid Game and go “from rags to riches.”

Reuters’ calls to the phone number were not answered Wednesday.

“Together with the production company, we are working to resolve this matter, including editing scenes with phone numbers where necessary,” Netflix said Wednesday.

The woman told SBS last month it was impossible for her to change her number due to client contacts, and she had declined an offer of about $900 in compensati­on. SBS has reported that she has since been offered more than $5,000. Netflix and Siren Pictures declined to comment Wednesday on any compensati­on offers.

The culture ministry’s Korean Film Council offers moviemaker­s screen numbers not used in real life, but TV shows streamed on services like Netflix do not have access to that service. Netflix and Siren had said earlier they deliberate­ly showed only the final eight digits of the mobile phone number, and were unaware that, when dialed, the prefix would automatica­lly be added to complete the number.

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