Up-and-coming actress Ji-young Yoo is set to join Nicole Kidman in Amazon‘s drama series Expats, which hails from The Farewell writer-director Lulu Wang, Collider has exclusively learned.
Expats is based on Janice Y.K. Lee‘s novel The Expatriates, and the series is set against the fabric of Hong Kong, where an international community of expats find their lives bound together forever after a sudden family tragedy.
Ji-young will play Mercy, a carefree New Yorker who becomes tangled up in the lives of the expat community in Hong Kong. Though the move to Asia was meant to be a fresh start for her after college, Mercy’s zero-responsibility attitude to life begins to haunt her, proving what she has always believed to be true — that she was born with a curse.
Amazon gave Expats a straight-to-series order back in July 2019 as Wang was riding high off the success of The Farewell. “When I first read Janice Lee’s diasporic novel, I was immediately drawn to the rich characters and the global yet intimate exploration of life in modern Hong Kong,” Wang said in a statement at the time.
The acclaimed filmmaker co-wrote the series with author Lee and Alice Bell, and will direct all episodes in addition to serving as showrunner. Wang and Bell will also executive produce alongside Kidman and her Blossom Films partner Per Saari as well as Theresa Park of Per Capita Productions, while Lee will serve as a consulting producer on the show, which hails from Amazon Studios.
Ji-young starred in Netflix‘s monster series Sweet Home before landing a role in the streamer’s recent feature Moxie from director Amy Poehler. She’ll soon be seen in Josephine Decker‘s A24/Apple TV+ movie The Sky Is Everywhere alongside Jason Segel and Cherry Jones, and that film is expected to hit theaters in 2022. Ji-young is also an accomplished dancer and musician, and she’s represented by CESD Talent Agency and Brave Artists Management.