Apple TV+’s new eight-episode saga “Pachinko” is a truly captivating, epic, and heartfelt series that captures the stories of four generations of a Korean immigrant family –sacrificing all they have for a better future.
Inspired by The New York Times bestselling novel written by Korean-American author Min Jin Lee, “Pachinko” takes viewers through intimate journeys between Korea, Japan, and America.
“Pachinko” highlights an international tale of war, as Japan colonized Korea as part of its growing Empire in 1910. Many Koreans then lost their livelihood and made sacrifices to leave their homes for foreign lands, while facing unfathomable conditions.
Throughout the captivating series, viewers follow the life story of the main character Sunja told in three different stages – played by Minha Kim (teenage Sunja), Yu-na Jeon, (younger Sunja), and older Sunja (Oscar winner Yuh-Jung Youn). Teenage Sunja experiences a passionate romance with Hansu (played by Korean Superstar Lee Min-Ho), that later turns into forbidden love, leaving her to endure a journey of sacrifice, oppression, and resilience.
The Knockturnal exclusively sat down with cast members Minha Kim, Lee Min-Ho, Anna Sawai (Naomi), Jin Ha (Solomon Baek), along with creator Soo Hugh, and executive producers Theresa Kang-Lowe, Michael Ellenberg, and Justin Chon.
“The book was so extraordinary, and thinking about the book made me think so much about my own family…made me think so much about my homeland and who I am now, and why I am here,” Hugh expressed.
“Pachinko” is a Japanese form of pinball. The phenomenal series takes the audience inside Japan’s thriving pachinko parlors where people spend their money and downtime on the brightly colored, yet addictive machines. Japan’s pachinko market is worth over $200 billion per year – more than Las Vegas, Macau, and Singapore’s casinos combined.
“Pachinko is the name of the actual machine as well as the name of the game, but for many immigrants from Korea, it was their life,” Chon explained.
The first three episodes of “Pachinko” premiere March 25 on Apple TV+.