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Meet your Korean F4

What horrible timing following Choi Jin-shil’s shocking death, because now it’s hard to get that excited about news I/we have been waiting forever to hear, which is the announcement of the “F4” guys in the Korean Hana Yori Dango, aka Boys Before Flowers.

Although it was floated around that the casting would comprise mostly pop idol stars, it turns out (for the better, imo), that we’re split half-half between idols and actors (the two rising actors at least have a decent amount of experience — for their age, I mean).

  • First is F4 leader in the Tsukasa role, aka actor Lee Min-ho (above left).
  • Kim Hyun-joong, idol singer of pop boy band SS501, takes on the role of Rui.
  • Kim Bum (!!!), at above right, is most recently of East of Eden and the biggest surprise for me — and a pleasant one at that, since he’s proved he can act. He’s Soujiro.
  • And, finally, Kim Joon is the least-known of the F4 boys, as Akira.

 

Lee Min-ho takes the lead as “Doumyouji Tsukasa,” renamed for the drama as “Gu Jun-pyo”:

Lee Min-ho, born in 1987, has a decent amount of work behind him, having done several TV shows and a couple films, including I Don’t Know Either, Run! Mackerel, Public Enemy Returns, and the recent Our School E.T.

A least they gave Doumyouji to a “real” actor instead of the crossover newbie in his acting debut. Not that that’s bad (we all have to start somewhere?) but considering that he’s the most crucial F4 role, he’d damn well better know how to act.

 

Kim Hyun-joong takes the character of “Hanazawa Rui,” renamed “Yoon Ji-hoo”:

Kim Hyun-joong, a 1986-er of boy band SS501, is currently paired with Hwang Bo on variety show We Got Married, and was the first name to be floated around earlier this summer. He’s taking over the role following Oguri Shun’s excellent portrayal — that’ll be an uphill climb, particularly given that the boy doesn’t have a lot of acting experience. It appears he was cast because he fits the image; we’ll see if his skills measure up.

 

Kim Bum is cast in the “Nishikada Soujiro” role, renamed “So Yi-jung”:

I’m a bit disappointed that Kim Bum, the young’un of the bunch (a 1989-er), is being used in a lesser capacity here, although since the series is set for 24 episodes, hopefully Soujiro’s and Akira’s roles are given more attention than as mere sidemen for Tsukasa and Rui. I also hope he’s given a chance to expand on his recently demonstrated melo acting skills. Hey, at least Soujiro was given a bit of a “deeper” story line than Akira in the J-version, yeah? What I’m saying is: You’ve got this budding “serious” actor, so don’t waste him.

 

Kim Joon as “Mimasaka Akira,” aka “Song Woo-bin”:

As the guy I’m least familiar with (as in, not at all), this is the best pic I could get; Kim Joon (full real name Kim Hyung-joon, a 1985-er) is the guy on the right. And when I say “newb,” I mean this is his acting debut. He is, however, a member of the newish pop boy band T-Max.

Via Joy News

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The only person worthy of fan girling about is Kim Bum. I honestly rather see him lead this drama this these other newbies. I haven't heard of the other two, but I'm not looking forward to seeing kim hyun joong. Hopefully this doesn't fail like Goong S did. Now that they cast the males, wonder who they'll cast for the female lead.

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i am fan of your kim bum. .
maybe we will see each other. . . oveEeErz!

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OMG, I'm soo excited for this drama!
I'll watch this for Kim Bum! <333
He was so good in East of Eden~

I wonder who'll play Makino?

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i'm kindda perplexed... excited to HYD news.. but sad by CJS death....
anyway, i'm liking the cast!! they are all new to me, except SS501 HJ, it's still scheduled for KBS's 2009 drama line right?

but where's the female lead? i'm more eager to see who will play her..

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The Japanese version was the first J-dorama I actually watched, and I enjoyed it very much. It had a great manga-ish (word?) sensibility that I enjoyed....

Looking forward to seeing what the K-drama version will be like, but as you pointed out, my sense of anticipation was doused by the shock of Choi Jin Shil's apparent suicide. Condolences to her family...(poor kids).

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It's about time. Is the show still set to air in December? Also, where's Makino, who is one of the most important parts of the show?

(I don't mean to sound rude, I'm just genuinely curious. Also cannot find it in self to be fangirly atm.)

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AHHHH! KIM BUM!
Kim Bum is the only one I'm familiar with and I can't wait to see him act as one of the F4 boys! XD

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AHHHH! KIM BUM!
Kim Bum is the only one I'm familiar with and I can't wait to see him act as one of the F4 boys! XD

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ooooooooh excited! t
but was realllllly hoping for siwon!

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omg i love the cast!! soo goodd!!! yayayyaayayaaya (so much better than what i expected..!!)

uhm but im guessing that the main girl lead is not chosen yet.... -_-;;

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Ki Bum..I love him in east of eden...Great young actor..Anyways its vital for them to choose the right female lead. i wonder who will it be, i hope it will the girl who act in Who are you. She is very suitable for this role.

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I'm looking forward to this drama! T-Max sounds like a tampon brand hehee

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Well it looks like the Kim Hyun Joong rumor was probably true. They probably intended to cast him as Tsukasa, but they realized that the role was a big burden for an idol. He'd be fine as Rui. Pretty and well . . . pretty. :D

"I’m a bit disappointed that Kim Bum, the young’un of the bunch (a 1989-er), is being used in a lesser capacity here, "

Yup, this is a bad, bad move. I'd imagine most Netizens are grousing why he isn't playing the lead role. Given his performance in East of Eden -- and truly I didn't think he was yet capable of it -- he could muster the demons to properly play Tsukasa. (Also the more intense he got, the more he resembled Jo In Sung in not just his eyes but the volatility and the sensitivity and the "there-ness" of his beautiful, frayed soul. And you need all that to play a definitive Tsukasa.) Also, EofE is going to be a major Hallyu property, and so you would imagine that Kim Bum would be the ideal candidate to promote the show.

"Hey, at least Soujiro was given a bit of a “deeper” story line than Akira in the J-version, yeah? "

I think most people were surprised how much of the Soujiro-Yuki storyline was used in HanaDan actually. It's a very minor storyline in the comic. Akira/Soujiro really are just color characters, unless they want to give each person something more substantial.

I've never seen Lee Min Ho in any show, so I have no idea. But if they cast LMH and PHJ, I think you really, really gotta look at Park Min Young as Makino now. She's worked with both actors and she can still play a high school character. You'll also need somebody with a strong personality to carry the show, since it's very likely the actress playing Makino will do most of the heavy lifting.

This is a sad day. Why couldn't they have waited another week to announce? Korea has to bury a queen. :(

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well if you think about it the first meteor garden cast are practically newbies. And even tho they can't really act, it's still entertaining. I still can't see another rui besides Shun Oguri... but I guess I can give KHJ a chance... and i've never really heard of kibum... maybe it's time for me to go search for his dramas.
but the guy who plays domyouji doesn't cut it for me... maybe his acting might make a difference.

Oh the pressure's on... another remake.. and it's gonna be deadly.

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Personally I'm not familiar with anybody's acting skills, but I am still excited about this since I want to see how the Korean version will turn out and have it's own character. I loved, LOVED the Jdrama so I have high expectations..

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Kim bum i like him... i'll support him

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I heard a rumor that Ara (well, Go Ara) was being casted. Is this true?

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Yay, Kim Bum :)

He's wonderful.
The others, I'll just have to wait until the drama starts airing.

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Honestly, since I have been watching WGM, I think I'll give Kim Hyun-joong the benefit of the doubt for 2 reasons. For one, his personality doesn't seem like the type to start something and half-ass it, if you have been watching WGM he's one competitive guy. Second, he is part of my favorite couple so I am supporting it out of fan-dom, too. (Fan of WGM not SS501 since I don't listen to Korean music as a norm)

I haven't seen any of the other cast in anything but I agree with Dramabeans that it's a good thing that they gave Tsukasa's role to an actual actor. As much as I may root for Kim Hyun-Joong, the likelihood that he will not be great as an actor the first time around is high, and I would probably not watch it if he was the lead, because that would be asking for too much to drop a newb in as lead. I wouldn't want to sit through 20 odd eps of bad acting or gradual learning curve acting from the actor that is supposed to carry the drama.

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LOOKING FORWARD TO THIS DRAMA...
Honestly, I'm not avery big fan of Kim Hyun-joong, so I'm just plain glad he isn't playin' Domyoji... I guess I'm OK with him as Rui...

Kim Bum's a cutie...
I think Lee Min-ho also played a role in I'm Sam..

Dying of curiosity though on who'll be playing Makino.

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i am fan of you lee min hoo and of course Kim hyun joo

I LOVE YOU kin hyun joo
My dream to see you Kim hyun joo and take many photos with you

my first korean drama was boys over flowers and from my first division i loved and adore you till my death

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Now, waiting for the girl casts! WHoo! Better be good.

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I giggled when I read the news. LOL

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"But if they cast LMH and PHJ, I think you really, really gotta look at Park Min Young as Makino now. "

I could deal with Park Min-young, but I couldn't put up with Go Ara. She's pretty to look at, but she hasn't yet learned to emote -- most of her emotions are on a very constant level, halfway between bland and medium-bland. Granted, she can cry (was pleasantly surprised by her crying in Who Are You), but I'd like to see her figure out how to do "fierce," "intense" and/or "spunky," which she hasn't yet.

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woah! we finally know! I was all confused with all the rumors of Hyun Joong playing Hanazawa Rui, then hearing he was gonna play Domyouji....I'm satisfied, I think he fits better playing Hanazawa Rui, I think he'll do great! Hyun Joong Hwaiting!....now I'm real curious at who'll play Makino! I hope it's a really cute girl!....ah I'm so looking forward to it!...this is the first time I'm so interested in a remake!

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Oh, finally! My excitement is a little... weak, right now, though. Still can't get over CJS news.

But wow, this cast looks HOT. I hope they're able to really bring the characters to life; I worry the most about Kim Hyunjoong. I've never seen him act, and the only thing that seems to have got him his role is his pretty face. Hopefully he'll WOW us with some good acting. Er, I'll lower my expectations to "decent" acting.

Like you, I'm disappointed that Kim Bum has a smaller role in this drama. But hey, at least he's in it. And at least he's Soujiro... I loved Soujiro in the Japanese version. But I think it's partly due to fact that I loved the actor. <3

A lot of people above have wondered about this, but seriously, I wonder who's going to play Makino. She's like, the center of the show. Well, she shares the center with Domyouji, but still, if the actress is weak and can't bring out Makino's strong, compulsive character, this drama will suck, even if the male leads are excellent. HanaDan focuses on HER life, HER struggles, HER rocky love relationships, and if I come to hate the actress in the drama, then that will bring the drama down for me. HOPEFULLY! somebody with great acting skills and great chemistry with the male actor will be cast.

For some reason, if Go Ara were cast, I have this feeling that she'll have a tendency to overact. And I don't really like that.

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we really liked lee min ho in "i am sam" - i've no doubt he'll be able to do the role. and he's got the physical characteristics of kamio yoko's original, which matsujun, excellent as he was, didn't have (apart from the hair, of course).

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oh, the casting is intresting, they were all youngsters and they're all hotties.. so excited, now finally they can start filming the drama so i can watch this next year..i hope its going to be as good as the japanese.. oh, and whos' gonna be playing tsukushi oh i hope its going to be Go Ara, because she's young and fits the role pretty well.so excited!!!

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I love Kim Bum.
Man, I thought he was a rather weak actor (high Kick!) but East of Eden really showed his skillsss.

But Lee Min-ho is young but his face is so like...structured that he looks older.
At least 25.
:I
we'll see when the drama comes out.

but yeah-who is makino?
I just hope they dont choose someone who overacts.
like in Hong Gil Dong-sorry, didnt like the girl.
...yeah

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wasn't lee min ho in i am sam? he played the pretty boy?!?

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hmmm i haven't seen any of LMH's work but it sounds promising that he has some dramas/movies under his belt...

i think KHJ would be ok as Rui... he kinda has that instant crush factor (after all Makino had a crush on Rui FIRST rather than Domyouji in the beginning)... but then again its only based on what I've seem from him in WGM...

Kim Bum will do great as Soujiro.... I think its a safe move for him -- i mean he's the better actors amongst the four (from what i've seen), but this is a trendy drama... if it creates a massive following then its a great boost for his popularity... but if he was cast as Domyouji, had to carry the whole series, and it doesn't turn out so good... well not good for his "budding" acting career.

Hmmm, better not Go Ara as Makino... she still has a long way to go in terms of acting... she has the face, but the spunkiness? iono.

overall... exciting cast as F4! they look pretty good as a group :D

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i dont know if i'll watch it
but kim bum <3 <3
i didn't know Go Ara was going to be playing the role of the main character (i can't even rmb her name now..)
for some reason i want YEH to do it, but..perhaps not?

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I'm also disappointed that Kim Ki Bum is playing a smaller role than he deserves. I was hoping he would make it as Rui but Kim Hyun-joong really does look more like Rui. This Lee Min-ho guy- i hope he can act. He's got Tsukasa's posh-bad-boy look, but can he transform into Tsukasa. I remember how skeptical I was about the Japanese version at the beginning because Matsumoto Jun didn't look like Tsukasa at all. He was so scrawny! But then his acting totally transformed him into Tsukasa-felt like I was really seeing Tsukasa from the manga in the flesh! After that, I was hooked on Matsumoto Jun's acting. And now all is left is the who would play Tsukushi. I also hope they don't cast Go Ara. I get the feeling they'll cast a girl from SNSD.

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yay for kim hyun joong!!!

ah was kinda hoping for TOP (big bang) to be casted... *sigh* oh well..

thanks for the news, javabeans! ^^

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@dramabeans,

"I could deal with Park Min-young, but I couldn’t put up with Go Ara. She’s pretty to look at, but she hasn’t yet learned to emote — most of her emotions are on a very constant level, halfway between bland and medium-bland"

That's indeed the key problem here. We can assume that Group Eight wants to avoid their Goong S mistake of casting TWO inexperienced actors. One of them has to actually lead, and this is even more difficult in K-drama than J-drama because a lot of what you have to do won't be conveyed in the script or by the director. Because of the casting (and again this wouldn't be an issue with Kim Bum were the lead), the actress will probably have the responsibility for carrying the M&D scenes. SHE will have to sell Tsukasa to us.

I just can't believe Kim Bum isn't going to be Tsukasa. East of Eden's just made me totally rethink him as an actor. If he were him, I could actually see this HanaDan being GREAT, like something that could appeal to both the teenage set and the diehard Hanadan audience.

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I just finished hana yori dangi Final, and I’m sure nobody can reach Matsumoto acting .. and Inoue Mao too. They even look like real couple …hontoni kawaii

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This cast makes no sense. Kim Bum should take a bigger role than that. KHJ shouldn't be in the cast.

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Yeah same feelings here javabeans. I'm hoping the rumor isn't true. I would choose Park Min Young over Ara too.

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"Because of the casting (and again this wouldn’t be an issue with Kim Bum were the lead), the actress will probably have the responsibility for carrying the M&D scenes. SHE will have to sell Tsukasa to us."

Perhaps, but I think that may be selling Lee Min-ho a little short. Not positive on that, but I'm willing to have a little faith in him.

Hm, Kim Bum is a little younger than the others; perhaps Lee Min-ho's extra few years gives him a little more presence as the team leader?

And I was just thinking it's too bad Shim Eun-kyung (the kid from Hwang Jini and Legend) isn't older, 'cause if she was 18 or even 17 (instead of 14) she could be adorably spunky.

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I literally squealed with delight when i found out that Kim Bum was going to be in this. However I am much more curious as to who the female Makino is going to be, as saryKIM said before, the story mainly revolves around her, so they need someone who is a strong actress. I don't want Go Ara casted either cause she seems that she would overact most of the time.

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OMG KIM BUM! YES YES YES YES YES!! THIS SHOW IS A WHOLE LOT BETTER WITH HIM!!! :D

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when i saw his pic i was ecstatic 'cause i thought kim bum was going to be either tsukasa or rui
not very happy now i've finished reading the article... =/
the tsukasa boy looks hot but kim hyun joong as rui?????

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i wanna be super excited about this
but the recent events of CJS passing away
has me sorta in shock.

im happy for Kim Bum and Hyun Joong.
i want a juicier acting part for Kim Bum after EoE
but he doesnt exactly have the Tsukasa mean look i think.
Well, Lee Min Ho doesnt seem that way as well.
I hope he can carry the role, its a lot of acting.
Hyun Joong i know people dont know if he can act.
But im hoping since he is musically inclined he can do that part of Rui.
HE really looks like Rui too i think.
No idea about Kim Joon never heard of the guy.
But good things Akira role's doesnt require too much.
Hmm too bad about SEK...
I dont want to see Ara though.
But i have this sinking feeling it might.

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"Perhaps, but I think that may be selling Lee Min-ho a little short. Not positive on that, but I’m willing to have a little faith in him."

Yeah, that's fair. But that's the catch-22. If Lee Min-ho can properly lead, then I'd be fine with just about any starlet in the Makino role. Go Ara, Park Min Ji, Nam Gyuri, Yoobin, Shim Eun-Kyung, Da-bin, the Olson Twins, etc.

"And I was just thinking it’s too bad Shim Eun-kyung (the kid from Hwang Jini and Legend) isn’t older, ’cause if she was 18 or even 17 (instead of 14) she could be adorably spunky."

Oh I adore Shim Eun-kyung! She plays a much darker character in Women in the Sun actually. I think she and Eun Won Jae are future stars.

"Hm, Kim Bum is a little younger than the others; perhaps Lee Min-ho’s extra few years gives him a little more presence as the team leader?"

See, what I loved about Kim Bum's performance in East of Eden is that he did a wonderful job leading and pacing the individual scenes between his brother and his homeboys. Now, I'm sure he got a lot of direction, but even so, he did an excellent job setting the tone of the dialogue and building the mutual tension in each exchange. He might have overacted in some bits (though, again, the all-around screaming sees commanded by the director), but I can't emphasize enough how impressed I was with Kim Bum here.

Like, I'm watching You Are My Destiny now, and the main male lead there consistently disappears in his scenes. He's reactive to a fault -- like he says a line and then WAITS for the other partner to decide how to play it -- and you actually feel like the other actors are trying to carry him along in their scenes. He's trying so hard to convey conflicted emotions that he almost retreats from the other actors. It's weird. And then then you see Yoona trying to overcompensate in some scenes, because she herself doesn't have a lot of experience and she's not getting sufficient responses from the actor. The rhythm is just off.

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Well, I found some info on Kim Joon from shenyue pop. Link here:

http://shenyuepop.com/2007/08/05/t-max-and-their-maximum-smiles/

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Ooh, Shim Eun Kyung would indeed make a good Makino if she were older.
I really hope they do get a good enough actress to act as Makino, considering she plays the most impt role (imo) in the show.
And KIM BUM!! I also hope they put more weight on his character, considering his and that other guy's roles are more of supporting characters in the original story.

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man. i can't get that all excited due to the previous news..

anyway..
when i saw the word F4 and kim bum's face,
i either thought that he was casted as tsukasa or rui.
well, more on rui. hihi.
so i'm disappointed to find out that he was neither :p

the guy casted for rui DOES fit rui's image..
but.. but.. i want more kim bum action going on :p
i mean, he gives off this aura that he's mysterious yet approachable and good than "playboy type material" aura.
then again, he IS a good actor, so he might pull it off,
or he might do a different portrayal of soujiro.
hopefully this F4 casting will work out somehow.

oh yeah, any news on who's makino?

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although i'm not exactly attracted to Lee Min Ho's appearance,
his role in Public Enemy Returns (the screenplay is by Jang Jin...hilarious despite the serious subject, as are most of his movies--I highly recommend!!!) is intense and tragic despite the short screen time.
he plays the "Jjang" or lead gang member at a high school. i could see him as the F4's lead, although he isn't as pretty as i had imagined doumyouji to be.

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i wonder how i'll enjoy this drama considering i have no expectations from reading the original manga (it was a manga first, right?) or from watching the chinese or japanese versions of this :D

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lee min ho's role in Public Enemy Returns is probably one of the reasons he was cast as doumyouji. check it out (i sound like a spam post)!!!

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Disappointed...

Lee Min Ho might grow on me if he acts well, but right now, he's just not for very "Tsukasa". -_- Too nice, maybe? Both the actress and Lee Min Ho's going to have to go all out to sell Tsukasa.

I can see why Kim Hyun Joong got cast. He fits Hanazawa Rui to the T. Now... we'll see if he knows how to act. I'm not closing my mind yet, especially when the Jdrama proved me wrong on all counts, but darn it if it isn't doesn't make you anxious guessing.

As for the other guys, I'm less worried because they don't have very large of a role. But I do hope their roles are amped up because the actors look capable and there's some material to work with... I believe Akira has a hidden crush on Makino in the manga and Soujirou's ex-girlfriend thing might be very good if brought out more. The ending of that particular mini-plot was pretty realistic, actually... If the Korean HYD adapts these parts, it'll bring something new to the table not in the Jdrama (not sure about Meteor Garden, didn't watch that).

Now, waiting word for the actress only. If they used a new actress, she better be on par with the likes of Inoue Mao. And if it's a well-known one... please. Someone that can act. I don't want to be there cursing at Makino because of the actress.

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