The addition of drama PDs to the MBC labor strike has rendered it impossible for The Moon That Embraces the Sun to finish production on this week’s episodes, as previously feared. There’s just too much work and too few hands among the short-staffed crew, and MBC has announced that they’ll be airing Moon/Sun specials this week to fill in the gap.
The upside: The filming with the principal cast will end on time, which is good news since Kim Soo-hyun and Jung Il-woo are booked solid, having assumed they’d wrap this drama by Thursday. The reason the two final episodes will not be ready for this week’s broadcast slots is because there isn’t enough time (or hands on deck) to complete all the editing and post-production work.
This isn’t a great scenario for MBC, which has been extremely happy about selling out all of its advertising slots weeks in advance, and can boast a national drama in its ranks after, let’s face it, a lackluster past few years. I’m sure all eyes will be on the ratings meters next week, to see if a week’s delay causes numbers to plummet, or if people will tune in regardless ’cause, well, what else is there to watch?
Speaking of which, this sends the other stations scrambling to figure out what to do with their shows. Initially all three stations were to premiere their new shows on the same day, March 14. But Moon/Sun‘s postponement pushes back the Ha Ji-won/Lee Seung-gi vehicle The King 2 Hearts, which’ll air on March 21. Now KBS and SBS have to deal with the question of whether to also push back the premieres of Equator Man and Rooftop Prince, or risk handicapping their new dramas by pitting their launches against a Moon/Sun finale.
According to reports, SBS has decided to postpone Rooftop Prince accordingly, and will air a two-episode special, Family Portrait, in the intervening week. KBS’s decision is less certain; some reports state that Equator Man will also get pushed, while another cites a source with Equator’s production stating that they haven’t made any plans yet.