Drama Casting & News
Cha Tae-hyun and UEE headline Jeon Woo-chi drama
by | September 20, 2012 | 80 Comments

Okay, now THAT’s better. I was so confused by earlier casting reports for the new drama adaptation of fantasy folklore Jeon Woo-chi. A whimsical, impish wizard for a hero is a pretty specific set of character traits to fill, that’s for sure. But strangely enough, that just sounds like Cha Tae-hyun on a normal day. Thank ye drama gods: Cha will be returning to the small screen to headline Jeon Woo-chi, and UEE has confirmed that she’ll play the heroine. Awwww yeah.

The fusion sageuk will be helmed by PD Kang Il-soo of Kingdom of the Wind and written by Jo Myung-joo of King Gwanggaeto, and starts off in the fictional ideal nation of Yuldo, established by the robin-hood-esque hero Hong Gil-dong. Jeon Woo-chi is a dosa, a wizard, who gained his powers by swallowing a gumiho fox bead. A friend’s betrayal causes him to lose his mentor and father-figure Hong Gil-dong, and the love of his life. So in order to avenge their deaths, he travels to Joseon, and becomes a reluctant hero for the people.

I feel like “reluctant” is pretty much Cha Tae-hyun’s defining characteristic, so that fits him to a tee. UEE plays Hong Gil-dong’s granddaughter Hong Mu-yeon, princess of Yuldo, the woman who will later come to have Jeon Woo-chi’s heart. At least granddaughter means that the age difference is built into the story, because with a 12-year gap between them, it’d be silly to pretend it wasn’t there.

This will be Cha’s first drama in three years, since 2009’s General Hospital 2, though he’s been primarily doing movies for so long that I thought it was even longer than that. I’m super excited to have a comic actor headlining this thing, because Cha Tae-hyun is so gifted at playing both extremes — emotional vulnerability and gut-busting humor. I hope he’s got some badass fighting skills in him too, which is maybe the hardest part to picture (I blame his perpetual babyface), but I’m sure he’ll pull it off.

UEE totally won me over in Ojakkyo Brothers, and I just want to carry her around in my pocket. I think she’ll have a great energy with Cha, especially if she gets to be feisty, and not just some damsel in distress. Also, is it wrong that I want Joo-won to have something else to sulk over?

Also joining the cast is Sung Dong-il (Answer Me 1997), my favorite TV dad. No word yet on which character he plays, though if it’s Hong Gil-dong, he’d better get lots of flashbacks! Sung was a co-star in Cha’s last project, Joseon caper film Gone With the Wind, so there’s already a good rapport there. Lee Hee-jun (You Who Rolled in Unexpectedly) has been cast as Jeon Woo-chi’s nemesis, who clashes with him at every turn.

Jeon Woo-chi follows Nice Guy and premieres in late November on KBS.

Via Osen


80 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. muhloy

    oh fun!

  2. DMKO

    perfectly cast! Hope the writing and directing is just as great. Thanks girlfriend for the good news.

  3. Gaksitalpyong

    Joo Won will so sulk. This plus no food that day = crying Joo Won.

  4. muhloy

    this sounds fun! i am in.

  5. ck1Oz

    Lol yeah cute cranky baby should be grateful she got an ahjusshi and not an oppa to act opposite her.

    • 5.1 D


  6. hanabi

    Yay! Cha Tae-Hyun! Can’t wait to watch this.

  7. Hmm..

    Does anyone else kinda wish this was a continuity of the Hong Sister’s Hong Gil Dong just so we can have some sort of sign that HGD and Sung Yuri survived.

    • 7.1 bd

      No, b/c the Hong sister’s HGD was an all-around mess.

      Yeah for Sung Dong-il and as for the 12 yr age diff. – that was common in them olden times, esp. for men of wealth and power.

      • 7.1.1 Gabby

        Let’s be real – it’s not that uncommon now. Especially in South Korea, which has, if I remember the statistics correctly, a strikingly low rate of older women/younger man marriages.

    • 7.2 Onichick

      Im still convinced they are in China hunting tigers with lots of badass clumsy babies….I refuse all other realities.

      • 7.2.1 jomo

        I am with you on this!
        I had to rewrite the end in order to stop crying.

      • 7.2.2 Arhazivory


        *still miffed at that ending*

      • 7.2.3 K4Ice4Thu

        Not only am I completely ignoring the ending of HGD and convinced that they’re in China hunting tigers, but that they also have a red bean bun tree growing in their garden and a golden chamber pot in their house LOL

        This looks like its gonna be a really fun watch with both UEE and Cha Tae Hyun….now if only Joo Won would be part of the cast somehow too haha

        • zhill

          love the Uee and CTH pairing. yeah, it woud be great if Joo-won will have a cameo like … hmmmmm … five episodes kekeke …

      • 7.2.4 Mar

        I too live in that reality!

  8. Holli

    Thumbs way up for the entire cast…love them all.

  9. pereleal1

    Aw, yeah!! I just saw Cha Tae-hyun’s last movie (Gone With the Wind/The Grand Heist) and it was awesome. Sung Dong-il was in that too. Can’t wait 😀

    • 9.1 Lady Spring

      oh where did you watch it??? Is the DVD out already?

      • 9.1.1 pereleal1

        I’m living in Seoul at the moment. But I think it will be worth the wait for the DVD.

    • 9.2 birdscout

      I saw “Gone With the Wind” when I was travelling in Korea last month. Even though we only understood half the dialogue, my kids and I lol’d throughout the movie. Cha Tae-hyun just hits all the right funny buttons! I’ve loved him since I saw him in “Flowers For My Life”. I am looking forward to this drama!

  10. 10 Lady Spring

    Cha Tae Hyun!!! This is going to be hilarious XD
    And wow UEE in a lead role. Hee …. Soooo gonna watch this.

    Oh I don’t know if anyone noticed but there’s a movie with the same name but the storyline is all mixed up. In the movie, the hero guy goes to present day Seoul. I watched the movie last Tuesday by Korea film festival here in the Philippines. XD It was kinda weird but there were explosions so I kinda liked it too. *lol*

    • 10.1 Leona

      c’mon THAT is za MOVIE… with Kang Dong Won and Im Soo Jeong. KDW was daebak, ISJ was so und so – I expected more from her. The baddie that stole the scene was the goglin of Seon Woo Seon but since then she got just bad luck with the roles.

      WooChi the movie was a huge success in Korea and I loved it too ( I’ve seen it in 2010 )

      Joo Won is grateful now that she has a married oppa as OTP
      (Cha Tae Hyun is happily married and more than his acting he loves his kids)
      I bet that we will get to see them bicker on 1n2d about how sexy and sweet and innocent and (add corny epithet here) is UEE.

      • 10.1.1 JoJo

        I loved the movie, too, and agree KDW was daebak, so i expect them to screw up the series. (but I’m a cynic)

        • Nanaki

          I am expecting they will screw it up but out of love for the movie, leads and story in general, I am praying the fickle drama gods heap their blessings upon this drama and keep them there.

        • eny

          i have just see the movie KDW good point is in fighting and CTH point in comedy, i thought the movie not much fun but good in special effect, i though the series will be more fun

    • 10.2 MhsC

      There’s a Korean Film Festival in the Philippines ? I’m from the Phil. by the way 🙂

  11. 11 dulcedeleche

    Awww no kang ji hwan Cameo then ?

  12. 12 Daisy

    Looking forward to this 😀

  13. 13 Danna

    Omg yes yes yes yes!!! I’ve wanted Cha Tae Hyun in a drama for so darn long!!!! And I adore UEE…..also Lee Hee Joon was very funny in Wild Romance and even better in all the movies i’ve seen him…he’s like the icing on the cake..love this

  14. 14 srainy

    i totally want them, cha tae hyun and joowon to bring this up in 1n2d! i want big baby joowon to just sulk and sulk and continuously sulk on the show lol xD

  15. 15 vrosemarie

    A-W-E-S-O-M-E!! Interest level spiked up 80%. Cha Tae Hyun’s very different from Kang Dong Won, I’m interested to see what he will bring to the character…

  16. 16 twentyonebuds

    This is DEFINITELY going on my to-watch list now! I love love LOVE Cha Tae Hyun, so I’d pretty much watch him in anything but a cute, whimsical fantasy sageuk? With Sung Dong Il!! And UEE 🙂 Yeeeeh, count me in 🙂

  17. 17 Abbie

    This sounds like such a fun show, I can’t wait for it to start. I hope UEE plays a feisty heroine too, because I simply adore her, and think she’s capable of playing a badass. The only other actor I’m familiar with is Sung Dong-il. I really hope this show is great.

  18. 18 stars4u

    I got so excited reading the casting news. I can really see Cha Tae-hyun in character!

    • 18.1 stars4u

      Is it bad to wish for Joo-won to have a cameo?

      • 18.1.1 kamen

        I’m totally with you!

        • ikhh307

          hahahaha me too.. please please…
          the first thing that came into my mind after seeing the casting is JOO WON.. hee

          • JoowonLover;P

            yes pleaseeeee!! Omg, so Joo won looks soooo much like Kang dong won. How awesome would it have been if Joo won took this role? Two look alikes in the same story AND a Joowon-UEE reunion?! Now thats what I call a Win-Win 🙂

  19. 19 venap

    haven’t watched Cha for so long… Thank ye drama gods.

  20. 20 news

    What’s the latest news on Kang Dong Won? I miss him!

    • 20.1 anna

      Not much, still in the army.

  21. 21 Tinselfannel

    OMG Cha Tae-hyun and UEE! I can’t wait to watch this now! Well I was planning to watch it anyway, but this casting just made my interest shoot up to a whole new level..

  22. 22 JoowonLover;P

    You know what I’m thinking now? Another Joowon-UEE reunion at the KBS Drama Awards! AHHHHHHH! <3

    Hopefully they'll be sitting at the same table….am I weird for making way too early assumptions? Wait, don't answer that… lol

  23. 23 sPark*

    The cast is sounds great! UEE isn’t the best of actresses, but I have a soft spot for her from Ojakyo Brothers. Although I can’t really imagine CTH + UEE as a couple couple, CTH has a baby face and acting chops so that should be enough to change my opinion. Lee Hee Jun is on a roll! Can’t wait to see him as a baddie~ I adore Sung Dong Il <3 I love him in Answer 1997 which I am about to finish right now. Also, I enjoyed the movie version, so can't wait to see this one 😀

  24. 24 crazedlu

    Soooo IN! You don’t even know. Love both leads. Cha Tae-Hyun and UEE? Spaaaaz. They both won me over OVER this year. Just love them. Can’t wait for this. Not only that, totally cool premise with lots of room for funny. Yessss.

  25. 25 b1

    Thats the first thing i thought so too .. Joo won will sulk some more .. am i bad for wanting to see it more ??


  26. 26 row.an

    Cha Tae Hyun, yeayyy!

    Also, Lee Hee Jun! Double yeay! He really caught my eye in Wild Romance.

  27. 27 Dix

    Is Joo won and UEE dating?

  28. 28 Arhazivory

    IN. IN. IN.

    Three magic words: Cha Tae Hyun. <3

    And, I do love UEE after her great performance in OB. And Song Il Dong rocks and the plot sounds fantastic.


  29. 29 Shia

    I love this announcement! Ah, I cant wait for the dramas appearing in Oct and Nov now. Plus I completely want this to be mentioned on 1N2Ds! Sulky Joo Won for the win 😀 LOL kekeke

  30. 30 whatis

    Ooooh this sounds like so much fun!! I can’t wait! hehehehe

  31. 31 danni

    If I could’ve picked any lead actor for this drama it would be Cha Tae Hyun, but he’s been doing movies so long that I didn’t think he’d actually do it. Glad to see he’s on board though.

    And another yeah for Lee Hee jun, who I’ve adored since Wild Romance and pretty much stole every scene he was in in Unexpected You. He’s played pretty quirky characters so far so it will be interesting to see him in a villain role.

  32. 32 cutieblue

    Super Excited!!!
    *doing a happy dance! ^.^

  33. 33 Bengbeng

    the casting is great!!!! i’m currently addicted to Lee Hee-jun, he’s such a good actor…he can be funny, he can be scary, but i love him most when he’s being romantic like in his latest kdrama, Unexpectedly You =)

  34. 34 biankoy

    thank goodness the part didn’t went to Taecyeon, who, IMO, is as green as fresh cut grass and not at all ready for a lead part. Yay for UEE!! though I was hoping for Joo-woon to play Woo-chi, I guess I’ll be satisfied with a cameo, a really adorable cameo.

  35. 35 Angielee

    hahaha i just love (and the sulking baby probably loves it even more) how Uee hasn’t had an actual love team aside from Joo Won hahah.

  36. 36 shiitake

    Having said that Cha Tae Hyun is a kick-ass at playing both ‘extremes’, there’s another person comes to my mind who got both ’emotional vulnerability and gut-busting humor’ – our HERO; Yang Dong Geun!

    Just sharing my thought tho ^^

    Love the casts!

  37. 37 anna

    Lol it would have been funny if Joo-won were to get the lead role since I always thought he looks similar to Kang Dong-won.

    I’m not a big fan of UEE (I don’t dislike her or anything either), but she really knows how to pick her projects.

  38. 38 pineapple

    Can’t wait! Thanks for the update : )

  39. 39 Laica

    Lee Hee-jun! <3 <3 <3

    I LOVED him in You Who Rolled in Unexpectedly. SO adorable with his dorky one-sided crush. Most awkward chaebol heir ever. He was the best thing about that drama.

    What a great cast. I'm really looking forward to this one.

  40. 40 zsa

    Reporter Go aka LHJ!!! Wow…you are all over the drama scene now…hehe…you won me over in Wild Romance, and I only watched the restaurant scene with you in it…(the rest of the drama kinda sucks)…I’m glad to see you so busy nowadays…looking forward!!

  41. 41 lovepark

    Cha Tae-hyun is so funny, and it’ll be a hoot to see him play Jeon Woo-chi though the image of Kang Dong-won is hindering my image of the character a little bit.

    LEE HEE-JOON!!!!!!!
    The man is so talented and the highlight of You Who Rolled in Unexpectedly. I can’t wait to see him again in another role! Yippee!

  42. 42 Anvesha

    Wow.. Everyone I like in one drama!!

  43. 43 foolmoon

    It’s awkward: first thing comes into my mind reading the title is Joo-woon disapproves. Hah.
    It’s Cha Tae-hyun, just watching him smile already makes me smile, so I’M IN . The actors and actresses line looks convincing, let’s just hope the PD-nim and the writers don’t mess it.

  44. 44 Farpavilions

    I can see the comedy potential but I’m thinking this means few serious softlit romantic scenes? Just can’t visualize it!!

  45. 45 viave44

    i can u image cha tae hyun’a comical face as jeon woochi now,, lol

  46. 46 Muuta

    Cha Tae Hyun?
    Hm. May give this one a shot. 🙂

    • 46.1 Muuta

      btw, Lee Hee Joon sure is having a busy year… That’s good for him I guess 🙂

  47. 47 D

    Hell yeah.

    I love Uee in Ojakkyo Brothers. Her chemistry with Joo Won.. mindblowing!

    Super like all the cast, especially Song Dong Il and Lee Hee Jun. Yeah!

  48. 48 Leishers

    Haah Cha tae hyun, is omg…this guy is good. Hehehe I totes love him. And I so agree with you girlfriday, reluctant is what he is. It fits him completely, and thats why I love him even more. I love Uee too. Hahah, dont know if ill watch this drama though…with time and everything.

  49. 49 Hallyusurfer

    Lol, I can’t be the only one laughing at the word “dosa” which mean “sin” in Malay.

    Loving the cast, especially Lee Hee Joon. MHGAF is my favorite family drama ever..so sad it’s over. Huhu

  50. 50 hellochloe

    Huh-ing at the odd choice for OTP (or more specifically, UEE) but if ya say so, gf… excusey moi while I get my luggage for the ship.

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