10 Things You Might Not Know About “Squid Game” (But Really Should)

Frighting facts, and more.

Netflix‘s Squid Game is an international sensation that leaves viewers hungering for more. Here are 10 things you might not know about it!

| Netflix

1. The phone number is real

At the beginning of Squid Game, each player receives a mysterious card with a phone number on the back: an invite to the games.

| Squid Game/Netflix

The production team made the mistake of removing the first three digits of the number instead of the middle or last four. For Korean phone numbers, if the last eight digits are punched in without an area code, the call can still connect if the caller is in the area.

So, it’s no surprise then that the owner of the real Squid Game phone number has received non-stop, unwanted texts and calls. The problem is, she can’t change her number; it’s tied to her business.

“Squid Game” phone number owner | SBS News

We keep getting order requests so we receive endless calls. We are also receiving a ton of text messages so the situation is…

— “Squid Game” phone number owner

2. This terrifying murder doll is also real

In Episode 1, this doll annihilated players during the game Red Light, Green Light.

| Squid Game/Netflix

In reality, the doll belongs to a village in Jincheon County in Chungcheongbok-do. You can visit her at the entrance of a museum for horse carriages called Macha Land…if you dare.


3. A different actor was supposed to play Abdul Ali

Ali, played by Anupam Tripathi, has become one of the most beloved characters in Squid Game. His selflessness and loyalty were in direct opposition to the games’ bloodthirsty nature.

Anupam Tripathi | @sangipaiya/Instagram

Originally, the role was intended for Filipino actor Carlo Aquino.

Carlo Aquino | Angelito

At the time of filming, he was unable to enter Korea due to travel restrictions for COVID-19.

| @jose_liwanag/Instagram

4. Squid Game almost didn’t happen

During an interview, director Hwang Dong Hyuk revealed that Squid Game was born back in 2009, but it encountered a decade of roadblocks and rejections before it could be made.

“Squid Game” director Hwang Dong Hyuk | Netflix

We heard that the series was too strange and unrealistic. We were rejected by all potential investors and actors.

— Hwang Dong Hyuk

Over the years, the world changed and that change opened doors for Squid Game. 

Players in Squid Game | Squid Game/Netflix

10 years later, however, OTTs appeared and the gap between the rich and the poor started to become even greater.

The idea of succeeding with fast money also became more idealized. The combination of both and the synergy that was created between the two is what made this production come to life.

— Hwang Dong Hyuk

5. The ugly truth behind the pretty coffins

In an interview, Squid Game‘s art director Chae Kyung Sun was asked, “What’s the meaning of the gift-wrapped coffin?”

The aesthetic of the coffins is childish, matching the theme of childhood games, but its meaning is much deeper.

I think I focused on the mind of the person who came up with the game. I imagined he’d think he gave the contestants a chance as if he’s a god…This is my gift to you. Even your bodies being disposed in the incinerator is a show of my mercy.

— Chae Kyung Sun

6. The costumes were almost completely different

The games are orchestrated by masked workers: soldiers in red jumpsuits. This iconic look will definitely be popular this Halloween…but it almost didn’t exist.

| xocostume.com

Director Hwang Dong Hyuk originally wanted to dress the workers like boy scouts, but that look didn’t provide enough anonymity.

At first, I wanted a boy scout-like outfit but it showed the men’s figures too well. It didn’t really make them look like ants in an ant colony. They needed to cover their entire body. And the best option to keep them anonymous was a jumpsuit. With a hoodie too, because they need to cover their faces.

— Hwang Dong Hyuk

The masks went through several redesigns that included animals and, “some other weird stuff.”

7. BLACKPINK’s Jennie makes a cameo…

…but not in the way you might expect. Her name appears in the show’s credits.

[ Special Thanks ], Jennie’s name highlighted in yellow | Netflix
Jennie received a shoutout for supporting the show during production. She sent a snack truck to set for her friend, Squid Games actress Jung Ho Yeon, to share with the cast.

| @hoooooyeony/Instagram

Actors, production crew, staff, everyone~
Please take care of Saebyeok-unnie well
– Jennie ♡

— Jennie’s food truck message for Jung Ho Yeon

8. The “statues” are real people. Here’s how much they were paid.

In the VIP lounge, models are on display as living statues covered in body paint.

One YouTuber, who was offered a statue role she declined, revealed how much money she would have made. In addition to full accommodations, meals, and pick-up services, the recruiter offered to pay her 5,000,000 KRW ($4243 USD) for three days of work.

Raye & Jin | 레이진 [Raye & Jin]/Youtube

9. The Easter egg

Early on in the show, there is a scene that gives all the games away through the illustrations on these walls.

Still from “Squid Game” with red outlines provided by “theqoo” | Netflix

Did you notice?

Still from “Squid Game” with red outlines provided by “theqoo” | Netflix

10. Will there be a Season 2?

Squid Game is an international sensation, but all good things come to an end…unless?

| gdenofgeek.com

The show’s director went through a lot of energy (and soju) while writing the series, and he’s not too eager to repeat the process.

In my earlier days, I’d drink half a bottle of soju to get the creative juices flowing. I can’t do that anymore… Writing (‘Squid Game’) was harder than normal for me as it was a series, not a film. It took me six months to write and rewrite the first two episodes. Then I consulted verbally with friends and picked up clues for improvements through my own pitching and from their responses.

— Hwang Dong Hyuk

That said, he would be willing to develop a second season if he had a team of directors to support him.

Lee Jung Jae checking the monitor on set. | @netflixkr/Instagram

I don’t have well-developed plans for ‘Squid Game 2.’ It is quite tiring just thinking about it. But if I were to do it, I would certainly not do it alone. I’d consider using a writers’ room and would want multiple experienced directors.

— Hwang Dong Hyuk

Want more? Find out what the director had to say about this mysterious red hair and the Salesman’s game:

Red Or Blue? “Squid Game” Director Ends All Theories About The Ddakji Game

Squid Game

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