Netflix undecided on whether to air Taiwan's 'House of Cards'

The country's first political drama, 'Island Nation,' has wrapped up production and is set for an advance screening

  5723
Actor Yang Lieh plays the president in "Island Nation" (Facebook/IslandNation1990 photo)

Actor Yang Lieh plays the president in "Island Nation" (Facebook/IslandNation1990 photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's first political drama, "Island Nation," (國際橋牌社) will not likely be released on Netflix, but shown on local channels instead.

CTWANT reported on Tuesday (Nov. 26) that Netflix will not air the show, citing its recently partnered Taiwanese drama, "Nowhere Man" (罪夢者). The show is rumored not to be doing well and has made the company reconsider its partnership with other Taiwan dramas.

Described as a Taiwanese counterpart to the White House series "House of Cards," "Island Nation" is set in 1990 against the backdrop of Taiwan's post martial-law era. Actor Yang Lieh (楊烈) plays a president who is faced with calls for democratic reform and a foreign relations crisis.

The drama will reportedly release 80 episodes over eight seasons, with a whopping NT$75 million (US$2.46 million) spent on the first season. The Ministry of Culture has subsidized the show to the tune of NT$30 million (US$973,000).

Netflix was originally said to have invested in the drama, but the producers denied this. The world's leading online entertainment service provider's Taiwan office told LTN it has not yet been decided whether to air the show, and denied rumors about the performance of "Nowhere Man."

Four years in the making, "Island Nation" had a Presidential Office replica set up at a Navy base in Taoyuan City, according to media reports. However, the presidential inauguration scene was shot inside the real building, in April.

Producers said the drama has wrapped up production. The date of an advance screening is set to be released soon, prior to the country's January elections.