Ju Ji-hoon eyed for new sci-fi series — K-drama casting latest

Ju Ji-hoon in a still from Kingdom.
PHOTO: Netflix

Ju Ji-hoon and Cho Seung-woo are among the major actors who have landed hot new shows in Korea's busy drama market in the last few weeks.

Several new webtoon adaptations are also on the way, continuing the popular trend of Korean page-to-screen adaptations.

Dominant Species

Kingdom and Along with the Gods star Ju Ji-hoon has been offered a leading role in Dominant Species (translated title), the latest drama from hit writer Lee Soo-yeon, who is known for the investigative drama Stranger and more recently Disney+'s sci-fi story Grid.

The story, which is said to revolve around super genes and viruses, will take place in a world where humans consume food in pill form.

It's not been revealed which channel/platform will broadcast or stream the drama series; producers expect to start filming in September.

Ju most recently appeared in the drama Jirisan and will soon be seen in both the crime thriller Gentleman and the Netflix spin-off special Kingdom: Crown Prince.

Three Siblings Bravely

After reprising her leading role in the fourth iteration of the long-running police procedural series Voice last year, Lee Ha-na is heading back to our TV sets in the upcoming KBS weekend drama Three Siblings Bravely (translated title).

Joining her on screen will be Lim Ju-hwan of The Spies Who Loved Me.

Lee Ha-na in a still from Voice 4.
PHOTO: TvN

Lee is set to play Kim Tae-joo, the eldest daughter in a family of three siblings, who has a habit of breaking off ties with people without any regrets. Meanwhile, Lim is on board to play Lee Sang-jun, an actor who grew up like a prince as the eldest son in another family.

Also joining the cast are Wang Bit-na (River Where the Moon Rises), Chang Mi-hee (Marry Me Now?) and Kim So-eun (That Man Oh Soo).

Namnam

Jeon Hye-jin and Girls' Generation member Choi Soo-young are being courted to lead the new drama Namnam, which will be based on a webtoon of the same name.

Choi has been offered the part of Jin-hee, a typical working professional in her 20s. The show will chronicle her unusual relationship with her mother Eun-mi, the role Jeon is being eyed for, who gave birth to her when she was still a teenager.

Choi Soo-young in a still from the Netflix series Run On.
PHOTO: Netflix

Among the risque scenarios in the original webtoon is a scene where Jin-hee comes home one day to find her mother masturbating while watching an adult channel.

Choi has become increasingly visible as an actress in the past couple of years, appearing in Run On, Move to Heaven and So I Married The Anti-Fan. Jeon is an industry veteran who recently appeared in the second season of Stranger but is more well known for major film roles, which include Ashfall.

Sacred Divorce

Stranger star Cho Seung-woo has officially joined Sacred Divorce, in which he will play the lead role. The JTBC drama, which is being penned by Thirty-Nine writer Yoo Young-ah, will tell the story of divorce lawyer Shin Sung-han.

Shin was a classical pianist who became an esteemed professor of music at a university in Germany but, upon hearing some shocking news, decided to become a divorce lawyer so he could confirm it for himself. The drama is based on a popular webtoon by Kang Tae-kyung.

Cho Seung-woo in a still from Stranger.
PHOTO: Netflix

Last year Cho appeared in the Sci-fi-action-drama Sisyphus: The Myth. Sacred Divorce will be directed by Run On and Ghost Detective director Lee Jae-joon and is anticipated to air during the first half of 2023.

The Chronicle of Crime

Reports suggest that Jang Keun-suk will lead upcoming drama The Chronicle of Crime, the producers of which are in discussions for it to become an original series for the fledgling streaming service Coupang Play.

The show will be directed by Kim Hong-sun, known for Voice and The Guest, whose latest project, Money Heist: Korea — Joint Economic Area, just dropped on Netflix.

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If confirmed, this would be Jang's first drama since 2018's Switch: Change the World, the last role he took on prior to completing his obligatory military service. Jang was originally going to make his comeback with the Kakao TV series Accidental Country Diary until that project was recast.

Coupang Play, the streaming subsidiary of Korean e-commerce giant Coupang, debuted last year with the Kim Soo-hyun vehicle One Ordinary Day. Later this month Bae Suzy will headline its second series, Anna.

This article was first published in South China Morning Post.