Chungmuro/Film News
Won Bin makes surprise visit to film set
by | September 3, 2009 | 41 Comments

It’s not unheard of for movie stars to visit other film sets in support of friends, but the unannounced arrival of Won Bin on the set of the new film Le Grand Chef 2: Kimchi Battle came as a surprise, particularly since Won Bin is known for lying low and not doing a making a lot of appearances.

Kimchi Battle is the sequel to the popular original film starring Kim Kang-woo (which was based on the same manhwa that was adapted into the drama Gourmet with Kim Rae-won). It stars Kim Jung-eun and Jin Gu, the latter with whom Won Bin acted in his recent film Mother. He’d also once shared the same management with another cast member, Wang Ji-hye, and had worked on the movie Taegukgi (which solidified his status as a top star) with Kimchi Battle‘s producer Lee Sung-hoon.

According to one source, the visit was completely unplanned and Won Bin came bearing snacks for the staff and greeted the director and actors individually. He is currently taking a break after finishing promotional activities for Mother, and is considering his next project.

Via Sports Seoul

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41 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. random

    stop visiting sets and make a drama already!

  2. belleza

    Let’s face it — he ran out of kimchi in his fridge and decided to pay a “visit” to the Kimchi battle set. (HAWT HAWT HAWT) freeloader. ;)

    “is considering his next project.”

    Translation: Take Song Hye Kyo’s phone calls to FINALLY do another bloody K-drama, preferably with herself in it. (Uhhh she could use your help . . . ) Hell, they should put her, Won Bin and Hyun Bin in a drama and call it BINNIE. I don’t care what they do in it, so long as Binnie kisses Binnie.

  3. mzpakipot

    Won Bin, why must you do things that makes me fall harder for you!
    I almost lost him to Cha Seung Won..haha!

    lol@belleza

  4. Samsooki

    I missed Belleza’s razor-sharp musings.

    I’m not sure if Won Bin and Hyun Bin should get together romantically for any drama or movie. They have such different personalities of laid-back-ness.

    I also wonder if Won Bin ever looks in the mirror and just says, “wow…” and then decides not to go out after all, because the view inside his house is better than the view outside…

  5. Fany

    Going off on a tangent, but Won Bin in Taegukgi is still my favorite performance from him. That whole ending battle scene between him and his brother, O-M-G. i dont think autumn tale made me cry half as much as those last 15 minutes did.

  6. Lenrasoon

    he’s so sweet<3
    i wanna see his new project!! *anxious*

  7. langdon813

    It’s almost too intimidating to post in the same thread as Belleza AND Samsooki! ;-)

    Binnie and Binnie smoochfest? Sign me up please! And yeah, if I were Won Bin…floor to ceiling mirrors. In every single room of my house.

    WB reminds me a bit of Yoon Kye-sang, in the way that he smiles with his whole face. Even his hair looks happy!

  8. belleza

    “but Won Bin in Taegukgi is still my favorite performance from him. ”

    It’s what makes us so frustrated as Binnie fans. He’s like the Greta Garbo of men. I want to be left alone . . . and enjoy looking at myself in the mirror. :D

    “They have such different personalities of laid-back-ness.”

    You’d think so, but the drama Binnie would just write itself.

    Won Bin: Do I look sad?
    Hyun Bin: You look sad.
    Won Bin: I look sad?
    Hyun Bin: Your wounded eyes speak volumes to my soul.
    *pause*

    Hyun Bin: Long hair or short? What do you think?
    Won Bin: Long.
    Hyun Bin: But long hair is such a hassle.
    Won Bin: Jang Don Gun told me he also likes your hair long. And you weren’t bad in Friend.
    Hyun Bin: Really? He said that?
    Won Bin: You’re like a untamed beast.
    *pause*

    Won Bin: I hate Lee Min Ho.
    Hyun Bin: HATE him. Dude, did you know she’s obsessed with Boys Before Flowers? She’s always like “Binnie, you’d look so good with a pama! Binnie, do you think I’m too old for a show with him? Binnie, why can’t I do My Name is Kim Jan Di”
    Won Bin: 2009 Jung Pyo is 2000 Won Bin. Is all I’m saying.
    Hyun Bin: Word *fist bump* Besides, Jan Di should have chosen Ji Hoo.
    Won Bin: You thought so too?
    Hyun Bin: Yeah, I mean, when he offers his hankerchief . . .
    Won Bin: Oh I know.
    Binnies: *sighhhhhhhhh*
    Won Bin: So, have you seen GI Joe yet?
    Hyun Bin: Dude. Don’t go there.
    Won Bin: Sorry sorry sorry . . .

    And when both Binnies win the MBC Daesang, it’ll be DESERVED. ;)

  9. Sonam

    I love him but he needs to stop wearing the housewife cardigans.

  10. 10 Samsooki

    LOLZ.

    You know, Belleza, I was worried that Javabeans kidnapped you or something, when you didn’t show up for a while.

    JB swore she didn’t have anything to do with your disappearance.

    http://www.dramabeans.com/2009/06/ask-javabeans/

    It is good to see you again, in the same manner as like it is good to see Won Bin smile, or it is good to hear Hyun Bin speak slowly and repeat himself. These are good things.

    =)

  11. 11 paula253

    omg, thanks for the laughs, belleza. i’m here at the office chuckling and no one else gets it!

  12. 12 bspanda

    Won Bin is so adorable! Really wish he would get back into kdramas – really one movie is not enough when he has been absent onscreen for what seems like a lifetime.

    Re: Taegukgi
    Taegukgi is one powerful movie. As much as I avoid watching war movies this was one I was really glad I saw. The story was moving and highlights the hard realities of war.
    And aside from a lovely story there was the added bonus of Won Bin and Jang Dong Gun together. Perfect.

    @ belleza
    Welcome ‘back’! Really have missed your comments!

    “Won Bin: I hate Lee Min Ho.
    Hyun Bin: HATE him….. Binnie, why can’t I do My Name is Kim Jan Di”
    Won Bin: 2009 Jung Pyo is 2000 Won Bin. Is all I’m saying.”

    OMG! LMAO

    “Won Bin: So, have you seen GI Joe yet?
    Hyun Bin: Dude. Don’t go there.
    Won Bin: Sorry sorry sorry . . . ”

    hehee Who wouldn’t love to see 2 x Binnie + Lee Byung-Hun together! Oops forgot for a minute there the underlying tension…was only thinking of the triple threat visual hotness! Oh well – there would be (at least one) action/fight sequence between one Binnie and LBH in that production. The other Binnie would step in as the peacemaker/referee. As long as no one got seriously hurt that is! :P

    Please keep sharing your awesome ‘draft’ scripts of ‘Binnie and Binnie’. And when ‘Binnie and Binnie’ goes into production I am so there! Imagine a set visit on THAT production site. Oh la la …Binnie-s hotness! hehe

  13. 13 belleza

    “Who wouldn’t love to see 2 x Binnie + Lee Byung-Hun together! Oops forgot for a minute there the underlying tension…was only thinking of the triple threat visual hotness!”

    LOL that writes itself too . . .

    Stormshadow: And who are you? Has GI Joe come to save the day?
    Won Bin: No. We are . . .
    Hyun Bin: Team A.J.U.H.M.A.
    Won Bin: Allied Justice United for Housewives, Moms, and Animals.
    Hyun Bin: We are a secret organization to protect the welfare of all Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Taiwanese, Fillipino, Thailand, Hong Kong — hmm, let’s see did I miss any country that doesn’t show Sam Soon — and uhhh Earthling housewives from the tyranny of Cobra Command.
    Won Bin: Whenever a mom can’t make it to soccer practice, I am there. Whenever a husband forgets her wife’s anniversary, I am there. Whenever somebody thinks their allergy is really leukemai, I am there!
    Hyun Bin: Wow, I don’t even do that. Is that why you haven’t done much of anything the last 10 years?
    Won Bin: Shut up. Anyway, we are here to take you down.
    Baronness: Ha!!! The Baronness laughs at the Binnies. Ha!!
    Hyun+Won Bin: Hi Baroness!!! *waves*
    Song Hye Kyo: YOU!!!!
    Hyun Bin: Aw crap.
    Baronness: Uhm, Hyun Bin, who is this woman on our set?
    Song Hye Kyo: I hate you Sienna you *bleep* homewrecker* you *bleep*
    Baronness: Guys, what’s going on
    Won Bin: Dude, Brian, do something.
    Baronness: Brian, do you know this
    Stormshadow: NoIdon’t. NoIdon’t. Wow, you know, I have to see my salonist today. Bye guys. :D
    Song Hye Kyo: You weren’t happy with Jude Law huh. You have to have a little kimchi too, huh? C’mon here you little *beep* *beep*
    Baronness: Help!! Help!! She’s tearing out my roots!!
    Won Bin: Hey Binnie, I don’t think Sienna’s even 5″4. Hye Kyo goes up to at least Sienna’s knees.
    Hyun Bin: True. Aww crap. And I really wanted to break Hollywood too.

  14. 14 epyc

    “It’s almost too intimidating to post in the same thread as Belleza AND Samsooki! ” – so very true!!

    What a joy to be in Javabean’s wonderful site catching up on the K-drama latest, reading her witty and insightful views with the bonus feed from calibre posters such as B and S, plus many others :D

    Curiously, while I’ve now seen dozens of K-dramas, I’m yet to see any of Won Bin’s works. Really behind in this respect. The only tid bits are a few scenes of Taegukgi. It might have to do with my deliberate avoidance of sad movies. Bought the Autumn Tale DVD for years but it’s at the bottom shelf gathering dust. (Has also a copy of the movie ‘sad movie’, sharing the same dust-gathering fate… Feel really sorry for those two DVDs.)

    Should I start Autumn Tale for the sake of Won Bin? (I was in Taiwan recently for a biz trip and saw the final episode of AT on TV – almost laughed off my chair for those ridiculously sad scenes.) Any recommendations????

  15. 15 thesassytomato

    This guy needs to be a show off sometimes. I’m so dying to have a piece of his gorgeous piece of flesh, rawr!!!

  16. 16 mzpakipot

    hilarious!!!!! thanks belleza!
    i like the part where Binnie complementing each other! bwahahaha! Sometimes I do wonder……*toinks*

    @epyc
    I have yet find a compilations of Won Bin’s scenes only in AT. If I ever do, I’ll share it with you instead watching the whole thing. LOL

  17. 17 bspanda

    @13 belleza
    *when you complete your script could you kindly foward me a copy? Having to hide my giggles even in these ‘installments’ . Awesome! :) *

    Hmm Realised that there is multimeanings to the underlying tension between LBH and Binnie. First was in reference to having previously dated/currently dating Song Hye Kyo. But come to think of it there could be tension between the current and ex BFs themselves….. LOL.

    Question: Does Song Hye Kyo also kick The Baroness’s arse for getting cozy with her ex (aka LBH aka Stormshadow with hair appointment) during promotions for GI Joe? (she would be doing all of us a favour….)
    FYI Baroness – you are going to need to buy yourself some wigs to hide your baldness….hehehe

  18. 18 mzpakipot

    i have a question, i know that most people calls Hyun Bin as Binnie. Is it okay to call Won Bin as Bin-ah? heh eh eh…..

    just wondering because that’s what KSA’s character called him when He guested at her old show Jump. Check out 4:15 of this clip.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4IWICe_G2Eo

    I know Won Bin’s real name is Kim Do Jin. Is Won Bin can be a girl’s name? :P

  19. 19 belleza

    epyc –

    I love Autumn Tale almost without qualification. But, to enjoy it, you have to set aside that the drama is about love. It isn’t about love. Or relationships. Or family. Or anything related to a realistic story.

    Autumn Tale is a melodrama, but it’s more like a tone poem where characters are more or less beautiful objects following motions of magic and eventual loss. About how brilliant and temporary things like youth, innocence, and life are in that season. It’s about farmlands, shallow shores, Midwestern landscapes, all colours and smells supersentimental that don’t really exist but from the past tense, the sad tense. It’s all surface, big tears, and beautiful sadness, but I love it on those terms.

    For people who followed Song Hye Kyo from her early years, Autumn Tale is also the show that formed an image that she’s never really been able to escape. Autumn Tale used Song Hye Kyo as a personification of autumn, as an example of beautiful martyrdom (she goes through hell in this show and looks awesome in it), and in doing so it created this iconic impression of the ingenue crying out for oppa as she sinks into eventual abyss, while glowing as beautifully as possible. SHK resents this role. Her growing pains are all there onscreen, and her ingenue image came to define her choices. But above all, pretty much to the rest of Asia, they fell in love with many of the things she hated.

    Now, for the Won Bin faithful, this was his last full-length drama. The key thing here is that he doesn’t get the girl. Won Bin comes on here as a 20-something George Clooney, raffish, scoundrelish, devastatingly sexy . . . But more than that, he also conveyed a man fighting with his conscience, with equal parts passion and moral concern, sweet and serious on a dime. He did a a full star turn here, and because he doesn’t get the girl in the end, he got the sympathy vote too. And worth mentioning again — he never did another full-length drama. Therefore, after Autumn Tale, it was if he was fated to never get the girl again. To many people, Won Bin is one of the ultimate tweener between the beautiful, but definite masculinity of a Jang Dong Gun and the beautiful, wiry androgyny, of the modern pretty boy. And also to many people, he represents a cosmopolitan,international accessibility where he like a Takeshi Kaneshiro is pretty much loved and accepted wherever he goes, bringing nobody but himself, fabulous smile, and good will. Hallyu without so much agenda.

    Finally, Autumn Tale established Song Seung Heon, Song Hye Kyo, Won Bin, and Han Chae Yeon as Hallyu stars. And it helped launch Moon Geun Young’s eventual stardom as Korea’s favorite little sister. So it’s fun to watch in that way too. Though if you can find a copy of “Happy Together”, the future star power of that show is just dazzling.

  20. 20 Taohua

    @belleza
    That’s an interesting way to look at Autumn Tale. I’ve been avoiding all the “Season” dramas because I’ve heard that they are too melodramatic/very typical (i.e. uses all the cliches in the book). Also, because I’m not really a fan of SHK. If there were any reasons why I would watch it, it would definitely be for Won Bin. Isn’t this considered the best (and I use this word loosely) “Season” drama? Either way, maybe I’ll give it try.

    By the way, belleza, I agree with all the others. I’ve really missed your comments and insight on here. Welcome back !

  21. 21 belleza

    @Taohua,

    “Isn’t this considered the best (and I use this word loosely) “Season” drama?”

    Autumn Tale is the consensus favorite. Being the first, it aims for less aesthetically, but it’s also together in a way the other shows weren’t. For me, it’s a tossup between Winter Sonata (YONSAMA!!!) and Spring Waltz (which actually has a proper story.) I also consider The Snow Queen was done by the same PD and writing team as a 5th Seasonal Drama. Same team as Winter Sonata, same kind of visuals/music/pacing and emphasis on fairy tale tropes. Finally, you have MiSa. Visually and musically, MiSa also has elements similar to the Seasonal dramas. The genius of MiSa is that for about 60% of the story, it’s really a satire with a (mostly) silent protagonist/observer. The latter device causes you to take the seat of the main character and experience the director’s aesthetic choices in that first person. When the music kicks in, when the show does closeups on So Ji Sup’s eyes, it isn’t about the couple and their situation; it’s about how he loves her at the moment. Extremely immediate, even primal in its urges of love and hate.

    The popularity of the Seasonal dramas in Japan has a lot to do with how stylistically the dramas resemble golden-era Japanese melodramas. There’s stronger emphasis on a proper film score rather than pop songs. And often scenes have no music. Yoon Suk Ho loves to use wide and master shots, where there’s nobody else but the main characters (which you actually see a lot in J-drama romances, but not in K-dramas) against massive natural and urban backdrops. This creates both intense intimacy and loneliness. He uses a lot of color coordination, and he thinks in terms of time and place.

    Autumn Tale has probably 3 of my favorite “shots” of all time.
    1) The boat scene where the camera does a closeup of Song Hye Kyo partially obscured by a umbrella. That single shot pretty much sums up Song Hye Kyo’s image for her entire career.

    2) The reunion scene on the beach where Hye Kyo runs up to Song Seung Heon, cries for her oppa, and then falls to her knees. The nice thing about that scene is that, instead of keeping it in closeup and going with climatic music, the camera goes wide-shot again and what you see are 3 confused people and one girl on her knees weeping profusely while waves crash. Instead of a scene of joy, it’s a scene where misery is released.

    3) When Won Bin takes Song Hye Kyo’s hand to run away from Ajuzzi. It comes out of nowhere, and it’s shot from behind them (like what you often see in Korean movies) as they run down alleys. At the same time, the theme music kicks in, and for me it kinda sums up Won Bin, the beautiful boy of conscience that promises to take you away from this hell. And that scene always leaves me a little breathless.

    All 3 of these scenes happen in the first 4 episodes. So if you can’t stand the show after that, you can stop right there. ;)

  22. 22 Jenna

    Won Bin should do a chef role..i’m willing to be his naked sushi..
    He’s playing hard to get..i know..

  23. 23 Laura

    @ Belleza

    “All 3 of these scenes happen in the first 4 episodes. So if you can’t stand the show after that, you can stop right there.” … which I did!

    Im sorry to but in, (the whole comment wasn’t directed at me) but I just couldn’t help myself. Im not a huge fan of melodramas, especially if they end really sad, like Autumn Tale in this case, and Snow Queen (which I stopped watching after the first episode) Winter Sonata I stopped after both leads reunite, when they find out who he really is and all. Anyway…

    What you are saying about the cinematography of the season dramas is very interesting. I really love when a scene speaks to you on its own, without music having to help you understand, or even dialog. I think detail is most important.
    But I also love when music is just that special element need it on a scene to inspire you. For example: Beautiful Days. This is my favorite melodrama so far. First, because nobody dies unnecessarily; second, because of the theme song. Whenever there was a highlighted moment, the song would play in coordination to the scene… simply amazing.
    It was very inspirational, and at times overwhelming. And it made it more meaningful the fact that before playing the song in the scene, there would be no dialog or any other theme song but just background noise, and the feeling that something had to give in at that moment.
    My three favorite scenes are:
    1. When LBH takes CJW to the beach the first time. When they hold hands, the song kicks in…. awww… and how the scene is just so beautiful and breathtaking when they are running and all you see is her sweater against this very pale background.
    2. When LBH goes off to meet CJW at the Cherry Blossom festival. OMG, I so new that the song would play again when the clock stopped at the same time LBH stopped typing.
    3. The last scene after LJH sings her debut song and goes off to hug CJW. WOW

    I so want the soundtrack, I wonder if the song is included there.

    One question. And sorry for being ignorant, but is hard for me to follow track of Korean celebrities personal affairs (not that Im dying to know their personal life, Im not a stalker or anything, but… you know what I mean) Is there rivalry between Hyun Bin, Won Bin, and Lee Byung Hun??? Im a huge fan of Lee Byung Hun. He was the only reason I went to see GIJ.

  24. 24 Laura

    Ok… No need to explain anymore.
    First I didn’t understand the whole joke with:

    “Won Bin: So, have you seen GI Joe yet?
    Hyun Bin: Dude. Don’t go there.
    Won Bin: Sorry sorry sorry . . . ”

    … or anything else, to be honest. But after reading a little bit about Hyun Bin and his new love interest, i get it. Yeah… funny.

    Now that I understand, I read it again. lol

  25. 25 belleza

    “Is there rivalry between Hyun Bin, Won Bin, and Lee Byung Hun???”

    Hyun Bin is Song Hye Kyo’s current BF. LBH and Song Hye Kyo fell in love with the All In shoot. Rumors were that it was pretty serious (Byung Hun was her idol, and there was talk of marraige), but they broke up around the time she was shooting Full House and he his movie Everybody Has Secrets. I guess there were rumors about LBH and Choi Ji Woo at that time, but that may just be association.

    “There would be no dialog or any other theme song but just background noise,”

    Are you talking about this one?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sIRQJJTy35E

    One major divergence between Korean and Japanese trendies is that the former arranges music around the couples, whereas the latter arranges themes around characters. Many mentioned that Boys Before Flowers didn’t have very good songs or that the same songs kept on popping up again and inappropriately through the show. But some of that had to do with pacing and hyper-trianglism of the show; if the main character goes on multiple “dates” between two different characters in on episode, the same songs will come up again and again. And because BBF didn’t have much of a film score, the pop songs came on more often.

    I was shocked to learn that Beautiful Days originally intended to have Choi Ji Woo and Ryu Shi Won as the main couple. Lee Byung Hun absolutely owned that show, and the sexual tension between the two was fire.

  26. 26 Laura

    Yeah, I did my own research and found out. But thanks for the clarification anyway.

    I read that SHK said in an interview she would never fall for a pretty boy again in reference to her relationship with LBH. It was also mentioned how she still had feelings for him. I guess she is over him now since she is dating HB (good for her,) who by the way is also another pretty boy, so…

    Aside from all that, I never really considered LBH as a pretty boy. Sexy? Yes; manly? Yes; hot? Yes, but never a pretty boy. In fact, I think the reason why I’m so infatuated with him is more because of his acting than anything else. I mean, the man can act…
    “Addicted”
    “A Bittersweet Life”
    “Once in a Summer”
    … he is so convincing all the time. My heart goes out to him.

    I completely agree with you. The role of Min Chul had Lee Byung Hun written all over.

    OH! and the song I was talking about is this one:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uw4U88f9xZE

    This is a part of episode 12. The song plays in the middle, which is also the scene I was saying about the Cherry Blossom Festival

  27. 27 Laura

    Oh! I forgot…

    “One major divergence between Korean and Japanese trendies is that the former arranges music around the couples, whereas the latter arranges themes around characters.”

    I understand this because Brazilian dramas (which are extremely good ones too) arrange music around characters and at the same time couples. Example:
    The main lead couple would have a song play every time there is romantic scenes or important ones, but at the same time the same theme song would be arrange for the lead character, often females.
    Then each supporting character that is essentially important to the story would have their theme song. However, they don’t use music excessively. There would only be a certain type of music to depict mystery/tension, and one to depict a happy moment and so on. Even like this, music is not overly used.

    I’m Cuban, and over there Brazilian dramas are the ones ruling. Although, I remember when I was little I fell in love for the first time with Asian culture because of “Oshin” But I don’t think they have broadcast another Asian drama. I’m not so sure, I left my country a long time ago.

    Going back to what were talking about. In the drama Beautiful Days, the music is arrange to a theme not characters or couples. They play the song “Promise” for couple Min Chul & Yon Soo, and for Sun Jae & Min Chul. The same with the song I was referring to earlier (don’t know the name) they play it at key moments between the two main lead and the two main supporting roles. So, it really is not arrange for a character but rather a theme. I liked that.

  28. 28 epyc

    @ belleza

    You did sell me – I will watch Autumn Tale for the sake of Won Bin and Moon Geun Young. And, you are right, the fact that he’s not getting the girl makes it more compelling to watch!! (I am no fan of SHK which is another reason why I’m not so enthusiastic to start AT.) I have in fact finished the other three Season dramas. I actually quite like Winter Sonata, maybe because of the snow and maybe because of the orange hair of BYJ :D. Summer Scent is purely eye candy with SSH and SYJ. Spring Waltz is just plain bland to me. As for the ’5th’ season drama, I started Snow Queen in earnest but never finished it. There are quite a lot of praises in this blog about SYR’s acting in that drama but , sorry, I still find her quite wooden.

    But I shall shut one of my ears and close one eye to watch AT!

    Or should I re-watch Beautiful Days after revisiting those YT clips?! How I love the Cherry Blossum scene which is simply a classic and that musical score is love.

    Lee Min Chul in BD is certainly one of my three most favourite male characters in K-dramas, together with Frank Shin played by BYJ in Hotelier and Jo Guk played by CSW in City Hall. (By the way, have you watched CH?)

    After CH, nothing in the current crop of dramas get my fancy. Going back to old dramas might be the way to go. And I have also secured a copy of Happy Together which is meant for X’mas holiday watching, together with Sandglass which I bought recently.

    @ mzpakipot
    Thanks muchly! If you do find an AT compilations of Won Bin-only scenes, do let me know.

  29. 29 glitzyglam

    haha i can imagine wonbin and jingu being friends.. (:

  30. 30 belleza

    “Aside from all that, I never really considered LBH as a pretty boy. Sexy? Yes; manly? Yes; hot? Yes, but never a pretty boy”

    Back in the 90s, LBH was considered handsome, but not really classically dreamy. The weird thing about LBH is that, the older he gets, the prettier he gets. Like Yonsama, he ages in reverse!!

    His show “Happy Together” is a lot of fun, because it’s SO opposite how we usually see LBH. He’s a wimpy goof ball who doesn’t get the girl. If you love it when LBH smiles that bashful smile, he pretty much does that through the entire show. It’s not a great show, but it’s frigging eerie how loaded Happy Together was with would-be stars. Plus, you have Chae Te Hyun and Jeon Ji Hyun basically doing a variation of their My Sassy Girl act before MSG was ever made.

    “This is a part of episode 12. The song plays in the middle, which is also the scene I was saying about the Cherry Blossom Festival”

    Oh, that song!! Unfortunately, that song isn’t on the OST (mad about that.) For the “Heaven” trilogy (i.e. Beautiful Days, Stairway to H-h-h-h-eaven, Tree of Heaven), the Beautiful Days director likes to shoot really stylish transition shots with music. For example, he likes to have his characters run in crowded places and shoot that from medium length (and in fact that’s one thing I like about HIS style — he likes to isolate his characters around a crowd full of strangers — for example, in Stairway to Heaven, when Choi Ji Woo recovers from amnesia, she’s having a meltdown while walking down a busy street), or have them constantly driving from one place to another. Whenever he isolates his characters, he’ll put on certain instrumental themes.

    “Lee Min Chul in BD is certainly one of my three most favourite male characters in K-dramas, together with Frank Shin played by BYJ in Hotelier and Jo Guk played by CSW in City Hall. (By the way, have you watched CH?)”

    Yeaaaahhhhh . . . City Hall is on my to-watch list. :D I liked LBH in BD, but honestly for me it feels like rehearsal for his next drama All In. And Kim In-ha is probably my 3rd favorite character of all time. He’s a lover, not a fighter. But he’s also a fighter, so don’t get any ideas. His blood smells like cologne. He can speak French . . . in Russian. That’s Kim In-Ha!!

  31. 31 Janie

    Thanks belleza on your wimsical sharing on everything…, no wonder you are so missed by all here :)

    I like all your input on AT! Also the few scenes you mentioned… Wonbin dashing out of the store…, the ferry ride and the beach scene…. are still so vivid in my mind… you’ve picked the best scenes! Oh I also like the scene where the two adult “siblings” sitting back to back wiping the window ;p On the whole, I just love the whole concept of the Autumn theme/scene of the drama.

    Aside from the uneasiness of the young siblings being touchy touchy sth like that plus at the end because of ‘fate’ that the “brother” has to die ridiculously, I thorougly enjoyed the show and OST.

    Many might bash at AT but let’s honor that to many many more AT is the very first Kdrama they have encountered and thus has a special place in their hearts…. and don’t forget most of these folks are the one who have helped created the Hallyu crazed during those years gone by :P hehe.., I think the rivers of tears that people flowed through AT has done them good ‘cos many haven’t shed tears for years so this drama has triggered their emotion thus it’s should be therapeutic :P

    ” Won Bin comes on here as a 20-something George Clooney, raffish, scoundrelish, devastatingly sexy . . .”

    Hehe… it makes me so giddy up reading this part and the rest of your description of WB. I remember when I saw him showed on the screen… I said this is it, THE Knight In Shining Armor, such cute and adorable creature plus he’s a golfer :P Aww… I so wrestled along with him in all his emotions in the drama.

    ~~~

    @16 mzpakipot on
    @epyc I have yet find a compilations of Won Bin’s scenes only in AT. If I ever do, I’ll share it with you instead watching the whole thing. LOL

    That’s not too hard, mzpakipot :)
    Well…, if the drama is in the old VHS format… then one should have no problem editing all-you-want-to-savor on WB only… ‘cos that’s what I did to my first Kdrama, AAE :P I adore JDG & CR characters so much that I literally used to 2 video machines to compile every scene of JDG and CR only (hehe, I knew that was illegal :P) Worse still, that time they didn’t have Eng subbed (‘cos I borrowed it from the Korean VHS rental store ^ ^) but I could care less ‘cos I just adore their on screen chemistry :)

  32. 32 Laura

    @ Belleza
    “I liked LBH in BD, but honestly for me it feels like rehearsal for his next drama All In”

    Actually LBH said in an interview that the character Min Chul was pretty much like the character he played in the movie “Once in a Summer” Which is sort of true… in a way, I don’t completely agree.

    LBH’s character in “Once in a Summer” was arrogant, like Min Chul; selfish, also like Min Chul. However, Min Chul grows as a person and takes the opportunity to show it. I liked that he didn’t faltered when it actually mattered, he saw this as his way of compensating for all the stupid choices he had made in the past, whether he made them for the sake of others or not, they were stupid choices and kind of selfish too. Now, his character in “Once in a Summer” lost that opportunity. He came to understand where he had wronged much too late. The fact is, I think he knew how big of a mistake he was making at the moment it was actually happening, and even then, he just led it go like that, because of his selfishness. Anyway, I’m getting off topic here.

    I guess the point that I was trying to get to was that I did not like his character in “All In” as much as I like/love/adore LBH. I think his acting in “All In” was a lot weaker, comparing his acting in BD and then later on in “Once in a Summer” “A Bittersweet Life” Maybe the fact that he was romantically involved with the lead female actress was the reason behind his rather weak performance at some particular moments during the whole drama.

    I know that the scenes are not shot in order, so he would be really good in some episodes, you know, very focused trying to be convincing, and actually succeeding. Then, in other episodes/scenes, he would give me the feeling that even when he was actually acting his mind wasn’t totally there (maybe he was thinking about her… or whatever)

    Ahh! It makes me happy to read other people’s good comments about my favorite actor. Im so proud! lol

    BTW Belleza, Im dying to watch “Happy Together” But I think I’ll wait till I get the DVD. Its kind of expensive on eBay.

  33. 33 Laura

    I always forget something…

    “Back in the 90s, LBH was considered handsome, but not really classically dreamy. The weird thing about LBH is that, the older he gets, the prettier he gets. Like Yonsama, he ages in reverse!!”

    I agree with you 100% on this. However, I don’t like Yonsama physically. He is the typical dreamy/perfectly handsome/pretty face boy. Yeah, true. But I prefer a manlier look. His look in “Winter Sonata” really bothered me. In “April Snow” I thought he was extremely manly, I liked him there a lot.

    I’m sorry if I don’t agree on other things. I really respect your thinking and I have enjoyed your funny dialogs. Keep it up; it’s a talent to make people laugh with smart remarks.

  34. 34 lala

    What a cute puppy!

  35. 35 belleza

    @Laura,

    I confess that I didn’t like “Once in a Summer” that much. I enjoyed its “Harmomium of My moery”-style look at rural life, but I thought Lee Byung Hun wasn’t great playing a young 20-something. I felt like he was overcompensating with the impish stuff to play young. The last 15 minutes of the film was good, and the performance when he sells her out was heartbreaking

    I guess I don’t see a lot of Min Chul in his “Once in a Summer” role. Beautiful Days is a good example of where a fairly standard character can be elevated by a great actor. On the page, Min Chul deeply resents his illegitimate brother, but that he doesn’t throw him out outright. However, the way Lee Byung Hun plays him, you strongly, strongly sense that here’s a man who everyday lives inside the consequences of his father, trying to overcome him, trying to seek his love, etc. He is benovolent and polite, but cold and hard, hard, hard. So when we see him finally break down toward the last 1/3 of the show, especially upon finding out what his father really did, it’s just such a catharsis, a release of a lifetime of misery and misguided hatred. He greatly improved the quality of the script with the gravity he brought into the role.

    “BTW Belleza, Im dying to watch “Happy Together” But I think I’ll wait till I get the DVD. Its kind of expensive on eBay.”

    It’s not great, but it’s just kinda cool to watch for all the stars and to see a different side of him. Asphalt Man (which he did with the director of Beautiful Day) was like that too. There’s Lee Young Ae, Choi Jin Shil (RIP), Jo Weung Soo, etc., and you get to enjoy pre-All In LBH/Ho Jung Hoo. Oh Ho Jung Hoo, your performance as Haemosu in Jumong will always haunt my dreams!! :D

    “. His look in “Winter Sonata” really bothered me.”

    Yonsama, the John Lennon of Hallyu, My Philosopher King, the Guru of Love!!

    Yup, after watching Winter Sonata, I was ready to pack up and join the Grateful Okasan tour with the other Japanese housewives. I believe Yonsama, I believe!! :D

  36. 36 Laura

    “Yonsama, the John Lennon of Hallyu, My Philosopher King, the Guru of Love!!”

    Lmao

    You are great! The fact that I’m not fond of an actor doesn’t mean I don’t see his merits. Yonsama has an air of distinction, very few can handle. He looked great in “Legend” and “April Snow” but “Winter Sonata”… that yellow hair… ugh.

    I agree with you about Min Chul’s character and all you said about “Once in a Summer” Which is why I have to disagree in a way with LBH and what he said about both characters being similar. However, now that Im thinking hard about it, I can see where he makes the connection. I think he meant the very arrogant part, and the fact that both of them where under a delusion, to later on realize how things really are in life.
    Like what you said about Min Chul, who was often cold and confident, very arrogant, and then after realizing everything… but no, even after that he made wrong decisions “for the sake of others” but yeah he became a total different person after knowing the truth. Suk Young had that turning point as well, although is a different context of course, but is about realizing the true meaning of love, in a general way of speaking. Anyway…
    I didn’t want to say much about the movie because I didn’t know if you had seen it. So, the part where he sells her out is the highlight moment of the story. I love how he tells the viewer everything he is feeling (or the character in reality) without even speaking. He is so great.

    Im trying hard to get all of LBH’s work, but its kinda hard as you can imagine.

    “Yonsama” I just love how Japanese have made him a local. lol

  37. 37 epyc

    @31 Janie

    I thought I was the only one doing that….. I love AAE but have never watched it in full because I can’t stand the evil girl’s part. AAE is one of my highest re-watched dramas squarely because of JDG and CR. Whenever I watch it, I just watch the scenes of those two together and then fast-forward everything else.

    @ LBH in Beautiful Days

    I guess Beautiful Days would not be the same if Min Chul is played by another actor. It is a classic case of how a great actor could change the fate and status of a show. I know RSW was supposed to get the girl in the original plan but LBH’s popularity changed everything. The subsequent change of script in the latter 1/3 – on Min Chul’s redemption – elevated the drama to another level.

    The great thing about LBH is his versatility. He is not the usual pretty boy (but he is undeniably handsome) and everytime when seeing his new work you just can’t help wondering how the same face could give a different feel and deliver the role so successfully. He is no doubt one of the very best actors of his generation.

  38. 38 rita

    Thanks for the report Javabeans. I look forward to the news of Won Bin confirming his next project. And good luck to Ji Goo and Le Grand Chef 2.

  39. 39 belleza

    @epyc,

    “I know RSW was supposed to get the girl in the original plan but LBH’s popularity changed everything”

    Yeah, that’s the thing. Even though on paper, it would make sense to do a reunion between RSW and CJW (i.e. Truth), as soon as you cast LBH as Min Chul, there’s just no way it was going to happen. LBH was already top-tier draw in the K-drama world (Happy Together debuted with a rating just under 40 — though the times were different) who was one of SBS’s main guys to carry their event blockbuster dramas. Even though Ryu Si Won was popular at the time, he (like Bae Yong Joon) was still kinda in his post-idol phase of his career.

    In fact, Beautiful Days and Hotelier ran in the same time slot and competed brutally against each other. (Ironic that the two shows would later exchange partners in pivotal shows in the near future.) I think Beautiful Days won, but the demographics such that the younger crowd preferred BD, and the older audience preferred Hotelier.

    @Laura,

    “I can see where he makes the connection. I think he meant the very arrogant part, and the fact that both of them where under a delusion, to later on realize how things really are in life.”

    Definitely can see that. I think I have difficulties connecting the two, because his character in “Once in a Summer” was happy as happy can be until like the last 15 minutes of the movie. Where Ming Chul had very good reasons to be a cold, cold man.

    “Suk Young had that turning point as well, although is a different context of course, but is about realizing the true meaning of love, in a general way of speaking”

    And that’s the thing. I enjoyed Suk Young as the old professor at the beginning and very end of the film; the spiritual difference between the young and old him was very well done by LBH. And, just as you said, both LBH and Soo Ae have a phenomenal, wordless moment together in that interrogation room. These two actors are two of the most beautiful criers in drama/movie today. All those bitter, bittersweet smiling-through-tears bits in Once in a Summer Trailer is practically softcore porn for melodrama junkies like me! :D

  40. 40 Laura

    “All those bitter, bittersweet smiling-through-tears bits in Once in a Summer Trailer is practically softcore porn for melodrama junkies like me!”

    LMAO

  41. 41 Laura

    @ epyc

    “The great thing about LBH is his versatility. He is not the usual pretty boy (but he is undeniably handsome) and everytime when seeing his new work you just can’t help wondering how the same face could give a different feel and deliver the role so successfully. He is no doubt one of the very best actors of his generation.”

    This is exactly what I always say about LBH whenever someone is talking about his acting, his work… etc. I mean, you have to watch – at least – “All In” and then” A Bittersweet Life”, you know, so you can make an almost fair comparison in terms of what the character is (a gangster picked up from the streets by the big boss and then takes revenge, etc.) Or maybe, watch BD and then two of his movies and you would have to agree with the fact that he is a chameleon… yep, no doubts about that.

    Like I said before, I have given this exact description of his acting (with other words, of course lol) so many times in other blogs that I feel bad saying it again. Although, when I read your comment, I just couldn’t help my self. :)

    You know which American actor is that way? Leo. Is like this; they give you a different part of themselves everytime they go into acting. How interesting.

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