China’s box office may be in disarray, but one production company in the country has cause to celebrate. Aha Entertainment’s Scissor Seven series, which was recently acquired by Netflix, has launched on the streaming platform. Here’s the lowdown on the show.
- Scissor Seven, which is directed by He Xiaofeng, is an irreverent comedy series which first aired in 2018. The official synopsis is as follows: “Seeking to recover his memory, a scissor-wielding, hairdressing, bungling quasi-assassin stumbles into a struggle for power among feuding factions.”
- Netflix picked up global rights (bar China) to the 24 x 14-minute episodes. It has rolled out 14 episodes so far, with no announcement as yet of when the second season will launch. The show is branded as a “Netflix original anime series.”
- The series amassed a large following in China, where it’s known as Killer Seven. It has a user rating of 8.9/10 on the social network Douban. In 2018, it competed in the tv film category at Annecy Festival, becoming the first Chinese production to do so.
- Aha Entertainment, which is based in Beijing, was founded in 2014 by Aiken Zou Sasha. Scissor Seven was sold to Netflix by Planet Nemo, French distributor Ankama’s new label for kids’ content. Marie Conge, head of global distribution at Planet Nemo, told World Screen: “I want to particularly thank Aha Entertainment who have trusted Planet Nemo by Ankama to distribute the show. And we are overwhelmed to see Scissor Seven present on a worldwide basis on such a platform as a Netflix original.”
- The acquisition comes as Netflix’s global expansion picks up speed. The streaming giant added 8.8 million subscribers in the last quarter of 2019, 1.75 million of whom are in Asia. This report in Reuters has more.
- Netflix has picked up Chinese animation in the past, notably paying a whopping $30 million for the film Next Gen. This year, it will launch Glen Keane’s Over the Moon, a feature it’s producing with China’s Pearl Studio. However, the service remains unavailable in China, although the company says that it “continues to explore options for providing the service.”