Drama Casting & News
Lee Da-hae and Jang Hyuk to reunite for IRIS 2?
by | September 18, 2012 | 95 Comments

Lee Da-hae and Jang Hyuk? AGAIN? Are we making IRIS 2 or Chuno 2? The latest installment of the spy action IRIS franchise is now courting Jang and Lee for the leading roles, and both actors are reportedly “considering favorably.” If they sign on, it’ll be the third time they’re paired for a drama: once for Robbers, twice for Chuno… and maybe a third time for international spy antics is the charm?

I can’t help but feel like we’ve been there and done that, so many times over with this setup. There’s IRIS and its not-a-sequel-but-totally-a-sequel Athena, and a pair of leads who’ve been paired together twice before, for another go at the same universe. The sequel will take place three years after the end of IRIS, and follow original baddie Baek San’s organization all the way up to a Mr. Black who’s behind it all.

No word yet on the lead characters that Jang and Lee would play, but I bet I can get pretty close. Well, uh, spies. (Unless suddenly the sequel is going for the comedy and it’s about the mailroom clerks who work in the bunker and keep inadvertently saving the world.) One of them is a super-secret black-ops-trained agent who has a hard time taking orders. The other is a stickler for rules and doesn’t like teamwork. Nobody trusts anybody. They wear a lot of black. They have tragic pasts. They’re only allowed to fall in love in Japan. One or both might be evil, pretending to be evil but good, evil but then turned good by the powers of love, or all of the above.

Here’s my big question: WHY didn’t this franchise just give a drama to Kim So-yeon? So far my favorite characters in both IRIS and Athena are the sympathetic North Korean agents, played by Kim So-yeon, Kim Seung-woo, and Kim Min-jong. It’s likely because they’re given the most interesting and complex characterization, as agents with conflicted agendas. And each of them could carry a series on their own, not to mention what awesomeness it is when they’re together. Now that’s a show I’d watch in a heartbeat. Maybe Chuniris will reprise their characters, or… wait… MAYBE they’ll just re-cast all of Chuno, but just dress them in suits and give them guns? Okay, now that would be funny.

IRIS 2 is planning for an early 2013 broadcast.

Via Osen


95 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. myweithisway

    Bwahaha, I like the idea of recasting ALL of Chuno and giving them suits and guns!

    • 1.1 pabo ceo reom

      Sounds like a train wreck! Choo choo!

  2. MsB

    I would only watch because of Jang Hyuk!

  3. Fab

    I’ve seen them only in Robbers, so I am exciting for this…

    And Kim So Yeon and the others should get awesome cameos!

    • 3.1 Fab

      Omomomo, I mean ‘excited’…

  4. aX

    I like Lee Dae Hee, I do but I don’t want to see her in IRIS 2. I’d prefer to see Son Ye Jin or even Kim Sun Ah!

    • 4.1 True2u

      Now we’re talking, If the lead was Kim Sun Ah or Son Ye Jin. I would be all over this!!!

      • 4.1.1 yakuna

        agree 100%

    • 4.2 aX

      Here are my top ladies:

      – SON YE JIN (A Moment to Remember)
      – KIM SUN AH (I Do I Do)
      – HAN HYE JIN (Jumong)
      – NAM SANG MI (Time Between Dog & Wolf) — BTW, why isn’t making more Kdramas/Kmovies?
      – IM SOO HYANG (New Tales of a Gisaeng) — she’s new but has great potential!
      – LIM SOO JUNG (I’m Sorry I Love You)
      – PARK HAN BYUL (Oh! My Lady) — not sure but she wasn’t too bad in Destiny/Fate.

      SHIN EUN GYUNG (My Wife’s a Gangster) — I’d completely love to see her play the villain!

      • 4.2.1 aX

        – PARK JIN HEE (Money War) — forgot to add her!

        • nova611

          would love to see KIM SUN AH as bad ass agent..

  5. oozzeee

    ,you had me at Chuniris.. Fresh from watching Ten ep 1 and Chuniris chased the creeps I had for watching said pilot episode..

  6. bear99

    Please dont. I’m not a fan of this pair. Plus i dont think LDH is suitable with action drama, i dont think she can accept if she had look ugly. I saw her in Chunno and she’s stay pretty and flawless which absurd cinsidering she’s in the running. MEHH

    • 6.1 Farhana

      I hated LDH in Chuno but she was awesome (acting wise, not character wise) in Miss Ripley! I guess her acting depends on the type of character she’s given? If her character is just an annoying damsel in distress I don’t think anyone will appreciate her casting. On the other hand, if her character is anything like the crazy she was in Miss Ripley, I think she’ll be awesome.

      Saying that, maybe she’d be better off as a North Korean agent with less action and more emotion rather than a South Korean agent with a ton of action scenes?

  7. Mystisith

    Can’t we bury that Iris2 project under a thick block of concrete? I can’t see nothing good coming out of it.

    • 7.1 Mystisith

      *Can. Hate typos!

    • 7.2 yakuna


  8. Katherine

    If there was a drama based on Kim S Yeon’s character then I would be all for it, I shipped Sunhwa and Hyun-jun so badly even though I knew that ship was long gone before it started. Would love to have seen her story unfold.

    As for Iris 2 – Jang Hyuk & Lee Da Hae ……. Great for people who are fans of their pairing but for those who aren’t *coughMEcough* I could care less now with what happens. Good luck to whoever ends up being cast in the show.

  9. meix2

    Then Yeah! Jang Hyuk…
    Now I’m back Meh again.

    I’m in agreement. Why cast new people/characters when some of the original Iris supporting cast were so awesome? Just make them take lead for the sequel.

  10. 10 eny

    i like lee da hae and she need this kind of role but the same pairing is boring and i don’t like sequel mostly it worse than the first. I just hope if she take the role jang hyuk doesn’t take it or she reject it.
    I suddenly think of spy charracter in secret lover, i like the idea of pairing joo won and lee da hae in that drama

  11. 11 semutapi

    Why Kim S Yeon always as second choice especially to Lee Da hae?

    I think she is in standby mode in case Lee drops this project. Good news to her fans then, but is her fan base big like Lee Da Hae?

    Is Kim S Yoen famous in Korea or around Asia.

    IRIS, yeak, Jang Hyuk or miss Lee, please find another project, not this one.

  12. 12 pistachione

    I don’t like the pairing.
    Hate the gurl. hmp!

    • 12.1 shasha

      Wow… isn’t ‘hate’ is a strong word. What did she do to u that u hate her so much??? Did she steal your boyfriend? Husband? Or did she kill your family?? Or something that warrant those ‘HATE’? If not… you are hopeless I think. It always baffle me when people said they hate someone they never met or know…. especially actors, actresses, celebrities etc. If u hate her like u claim, its easy dear… don’t watch any drama, movie etc that she’s in & don’t read any news or comment on thread that talk about her. No one’s force u to do that. It so simple. Ok enough.

      • 12.1.1 meix2

        Wow… do we really have to censor personal opinions and our freedom to use certain verbs?? Would ‘dislike’ be better? Really?

        To me, not a fan of LDH. Loved her in My Girl but not so much in everything else. But I’m always open for her to change my mind and blow me away as a lead in a drama again… it’s just that it’s been so long my hopes aren’t high. I personally think she should opt for a well written romantic comedy as her next drama because for a while now she’s chosen more serious and dramatic roles which I think is at odds with her acting style.

        In terms of Iris2, I also think KSA or another comedy actress (eg. YEH) would be ideal for the role. Wouldn’t it be great to cast against type? She does comedy well but great to see her kick ass in an action/ thriller now.

        As for JH. His constant macho alpha male casting is also getting a bit thin. Maybe they should cast a bumbling sort for the male lead… that would be so cool. How about Gong Yoo? Yoon Sang-hyun? Kang Ji-hwan? Cha Tae-hyun? WOW I would SO watch that.

      • 12.1.2 mamadua

        totally agree with you, it’s not very kind to use the word hate when what you mean is dislike or not fond of.
        Nowadays people use strong words unnecessarily.

  13. 13 Toystar

    I agree Kim Sun Ah would rock in this drama but I can’t say I’m interested in Iris 2??

    • 13.1 True2u

      She would rock the sock off it!!! When i first heard that they were looking for a lead, I immediately said, Why not Kim Sun Ah? I love to see her in a Action-Drama.

  14. 14 hanie

    Totally agree on Kim So Yeon’s. Her character & Kim Seung Woo are far more complex than the leads which makes IRIS more interesting tbh. And I just can’t picture LDH doing anything action-y that makes her sleek hair falls out of place.. Case in point: Chuno. Unless they make her character an agent posing as an actress to get access to higher…entertainment CEOs? Meh…. still not working.

  15. 15 Onichick

    I would watch a drama about mail clerks who end saving the world…I think it would be amazing and hilarious.

  16. 16 Slothus

    Re: Lee Da-hae paired with Jang Hyuk…

    I’m all for it. Robbers was a long time ago and doesn’t seem to be so well known. Chuno *SPOILER ALERT* had them together only in a few flashbacks and a handful of other scenes of sad awkwardness. Lee Da-hae has put in some very strong performances as of late; Jang Hyuk has been Oscar/Emmy-worthy in everything he’s been in since returning from the army. They have star power, good chemistry and a good working relationship, so why not?

    Re: Kim So-yeon…

    She is a great actress and put in an incredible performance in IRIS, so it would be great to have her back, but I’m guessing that her work schedule won’t allow anything but a cameo. A spin-off series with her as the main character wouldn’t have been smart; if there is a weaker concept than the contrived sequel, it would have to be the contrived spin-off.

    Re: IRIS 2

    IRIS wasn’t about story so much as it was about style, and IRIS 2 promises to be the same way. You might say “been there, done that twice already”, but this formula is one that can have repeated success with the right ingredients. It can pretty much be guaranteed that no competing drama will match IRIS 2 for scale, edginess, and action – that alone should make it a success, and well worth watching.

    • 16.1 subject

      Agree. Robbers was great and it’s a shame that not many people familiar with this drama. Those two have one of the strongest chemistry on screen I’ve ever seen. Same goes to Chuno. So, if they gonna pair again – I’m all in. You can call it “Transformers 9”, I won’t mind as long they be there.

    • 16.2 lenrasoon

      I Agree with you, i love this couple since Robbers and i would watch IRIS 2 just for them haha.

    • 16.3 Mari C

      I absolutely agree. I hope this is another good series for Jang Hyuk. I liked the chemistry he had with Lee Da-hae in Robbers and Chuno. But they had very few scenes together in Chuno. I havent watched Iris but now Im curious.

  17. 17 Zoee

    NooooooooooooooooooOooo!! I personally don’t like her acting. :C

  18. 18 neener

    I like them both as individual and together but this drama in NOT GOOD for them…come on! look for another one

  19. 19 jomo

    Unless suddenly the sequel is going for the comedy and it’s about the mailroom clerks who work in the bunker and keep inadvertently saving the world.

    That would be so much better than a sequel to its own sequel.

    This pairing leaves me cold.

    • 19.1 holdtheaegyo

      The mailroom clerk idea is so hilarious! I’ve never seen a kdrama spoof of another kdrama. I like the idea.

      Otherwise, don’t really care about the seeing another IRIS. I only watched half of Athena. I wanted the lead guy to get taken out starting in episode 1. When that kept failing to happen, I gave up.

    • 19.2 gg

      hhahaa yes i was just thinking that would be a riot, somebody should seriously consider writing a script about it XD

  20. 20 Dara

    2013 not looking good, all sequels.

  21. 21 jastinel

    I like KSA to collaborate with her friend JH, but not in Iris 2.

    • 21.1 jastinel

      I mean…HIS

  22. 22 Katie

    thanks jb,

    IF Lee Da Hae is in I hope she will do her own stunts !!.

  23. 23 Saddy

    Random question not related to this post, but related to Jang Hyuk: Did you guys watch MIDAS, his 2011 drama with Lee Min-jung? I just started it and came here looking for recaps but there are none. I was just wondering….?

    • 23.1 Slothus

      Midas has to be the most relevant drama ever, and is one of my personal favorites. I think it must have been too cerebral to get enough mainstream attention to have recaps here or elsewhere, but I might do some at some point on my own website.

      • 23.1.1 Annie

        Midas was a bit too cerebral for its own good imo. Jang Hyuk’s character just left me cold.

        • Slothus

          Most people – traders and lawyers especially – do tend to leave one cold, so I would say that if Jang Hyuk’s portrayal of Kim Do Hyun had that effect on you, he did a great job. Certainly, though, Midas isn’t the best choice for someone looking for an escape.

          • Saddy

            Ahh, I see.

            Indeed, Midas is way more serious and mature compared to the few dramas I’ve already seen. I am 12 episodes in and enjoying it so far. Mostly because of No Min-woo and Jang Hyuk. I feel like he (JH) gravitates to more darker stuff? Besides being very handsome, he has this intensity in his acting that is really intriguing to watch. Like, you know there is something brewing underneath and you want to find out what it is – which makes him perfect in the Midas role.

            Sometimes I can’t follow the stock market/business dealings (which is why I was hoping for recaps to elucidate, haha), but it doesn’t detract from the overall drama. I am very impressed with Kim Hee-ae’s acting too!

  24. 24 FM

    they should totally just let kim so yeon b the lead…gosh….chuno 2 in suits n guns indeed….:(

  25. 25 Jacintha

    thank you JB

    Read other news, daniel henney is also one of the casts ?

    true ?.

  26. 26 meix2

    Mistake IMHO. Perhaps the time for big names, all style and little subtance dramas have had their day?

    I also think they might be better doing Athena 2 rather than Iris 2. Athena was not good by a long way but the set up for Kim So-yeon character could really be written into a revenge/spy/action/thriller.

    How about starting it at the end of Iris (e.g. what happened next), incorporating her move to the US (or was it Canada… can’t remember), the assasination/elimination attempt and ending with a her kick-ass revenge. Hmmmm

  27. 27 foxbead

    seriously, producer or director should chose kim so yeon…. i watched prosecutor princess because of her….

  28. 28 The Real CZ

    Did you guy conveniently forget about The Great Seer which starts airing next month? Kim So Yeon can’t film two dramas at the same time.

    • 28.1 Slothus


  29. 29 ayat

    NOOOOOOOOO i don’t even want to see IRIS 2 now they drag LDH AM OUT i can’t see LDH in action

  30. 30 semutapi

    oh ya, Poor Kim S Yeon, looks like her fans don’t know her current activities.

    She’s so busy at the moment, so KSA can fight for Lee’s part.

  31. 31 Sammy

    The first Jang Hyuk drama I watched was Thank You and he overacted horribly in that. I couldn’t even finish watching it. And neither am I a big fan of Lee Da Hae. I’ll watch only if the second leads are interesting enough.

    • 31.1 aX

      OMG, thank YOU for thinking the same way about Kdrama THANK YOU. It’s so overrated–in fact, I didn’t even like it very much and surprised that so many people did.

  32. 32 danna

    damn….i always thought kdramas were stingy when it came to recycling lead pairs…’course I didn’t mind cuz that always meant fantastic new pissibilities…so this will be the first i’ve seen two lead actors together in 3 kdramas

  33. 33 HeadsNo2

    I wish I could lie and be cool and be like “Nah. Pass.”

    …Buuuuut it’s Jang Hyuk. I didn’t even love IRIS but I’m all over this.

  34. 34 MeeisLee

    HA! The first thing that came into my mind when I read the title of the article was WHY (!!!!) aren’t they giving Kim So Yeon her own spy drama? WHY?! Then I saw we (girlfriday and I) had similar feelings and I decided we were fated for each other in the drama-questioning universe. But of course, we could never be together because one of us is fatally ill or suffers from bad timing (whether that would necessitate time warping or the more boring kind of modern day) or just cause since dramas don’t need logic.

  35. 35 boobae

    I hope LDH and JH exchange candy.

  36. 36 Slothus

    Another comment re: Kim So-yeon…

    Her character in IRIS was very much a supporting character. I didn’t see Athena, so I don’t know what they did with her in it, but I can’t imagine an effective story revolving around Kim Sun-hwa. Given how great Kim So-yeon was in that action role (much better than Kim Tae-hee), hopefully she will be given similar work but leading in the future, and hopefully IRIS 2 will still feature her (and also Kim Seung-woo) as much as possible.

  37. 37 jiajia

    she’s such a bad actress tho!

  38. 38 musicfey

    This pairing again?
    Personally i think they should push back the production more so that they can cast Kim So Yeon as the lead, and give her time to finish filming The Great Seer (because as a few have pointed out, she can’t film two dramas at a time).
    KSY’s Sunhwa had such an interesting story line set up for her in Athena that wish we could get to see the completion of.

  39. 39 Roxy

    No please, I like LDH. I hope she won’t take this one… cause I’d love to see her in a rom-com again.

    The dramas she’s been doing lately (Miss Ripley, etc.) are just not my cup of tea… :/

    • 39.1 boobae

      watch ldh in Love Recipe. it’s a chinese rom-com with joe cheng.

  40. 40 ricky

    Iris 2 will need kim so yeon and kim min jon to resolve kim sun hwa’s storyline. That storyline was strung from iris to athena and it would be a mistake to leave them out of this one.

    Also, they need to resolve the story from the first iris involving lee byung hun and kim tae hee regarding the iris organization as a whole.

    If jang hyuk and lee da hae don’t sign up, hope they will try to get so ji sub and ha ji won or lee na young (or yang dong geun as the special agent lead who mumbles everything. That guy is too cool!).

  41. 41 anna

    I would love for this to turn into something like “My Girlfriend Is An Agent” though. Actually, why can’t they just make that drama version with these two already?

  42. 42 hope

    I am all for seeing Jang Hyuk but not with Lee Da Hae. Her acting leaves me cold. I wanna be able to root for the main leads but everytime I see her, I end up despising the female lead.

    First korean drama I ever watched was My Girl and I couldn’t stand her overacting. I also watched her in Green Rose, Chuno and Ripley…dont get me wrong, she is such a beautiful woman and her beauty onscreen sometimes leaves me breathless and her acting per se isn’t horrendous, however her acting seems so mechanical and robotic, it makes me not like her portrayal at all ,because watching her leaves me feeling empty and cannot make me root for her character. She lacks the ability to make most audience relate to her character. You can be a good performer, but if you are too technical, it’s still a big waste in my opinion.

    • 42.1 eny

      i feel lee da hae acting is good i can feel the emotion when she act and she choose different charracter and different genre, she is real actress i already see many actor/actress always choose the same charracter and i think that’s not acting
      I already see many drama of her like my girl, hello miss, green rose and miss ripley but i didn’t watch chuno because i don’t feel the emotion of this drama i think jang hyuk just good in action

      • 42.1.1 hope

        It doesn’t make her a good actress just because she chooses different genre and characters each time. Her inability to make most audience sympathize with her character is a major flaw and that makes her not very watchable and not a great actress. I am not saying she’s terrible, but I wouldn’t call her great or even good. She is average but likability wise, terrible.

        • eny

          when she play sad i can feel sad too, i see a lot of drama and if the acting isn’t good even the actress/actor cry i wouldn’t . And she already portray many of charracter in many drama if she’s not good she can’t survive that long. Even actor/actress is handsome or beautifull if they lack of ability their popularity wouldn’t last long

          • hope

            Well good for you if she can make you cry with her robotic, technical acting. But majority of us feel empty.

  43. 43 bd

    Lee Da-hae was a total bore in “Chuno” and she overacted horribly in “My Girl.”

    And while I like Jang Hyuk, his performance in “Chuno” was too one-note.

    “Chuno” had gorgeous cinematography and costuming, but the rest of it was a disappointment.

    • 43.1 JangHyukFan

      hmmm, weird. if Jang Hyuk’s performance in Chuno was too one-note, I wonder how he managed to win the grand prize award of acting that year….

      • 43.1.1 Mari C

        I know! one note? Aiisshhh I cant believe it. I can see why people might feel Jang Hyuk overacts. He has a tendency and in some moments yeah maybe he does that but one note? Never! The man has more range than any actor I’ve seen so far. He is so versatile, he can be funny, intense, energetic and passionate or cerebral and cold and he pulls it all off. He is so much more than an action actor. I just feel him, always. Ive watched everything he has done (that is available) since September when I became obsessed with him thanks to The Tree with deep roots. That is still my favorite kdrama next to Queen Seondeok. Chuno was slow at times but Lee Dae Gil is Oscar worthy. I guess it is a matter of taste but to me he is amazing.

  44. 44 Lucy

    thanks jb

    Hope this time round the character for jang hyuk

    gets the girl !. Chuno – jang hyuk – shattered my heart !.

  45. 45 s21783

    Pass on this pair; and dont like them – guy, over-acting most of the time; lady – plastic like barbie doll.

  46. 46 Penelope

    Interesting enough, hoping to watch the BTS when the

    actors are doing their stunts !. esp. Mr Jang Hyuk !!.

  47. 47 Laeah

    Looks like Lee Da Hae changed her face again. Why doesn’t she stop?

  48. 48 zsa

    I’d watch it if it was Kim Min Jung and Kim So yeon…right now?,,,blahhhhh

  49. 49 Kang Song Kyung

    I want the old casttt!!
    The only female replacement I’d accept is Ha Ji Won, lol.
    But as you said, they should just make kim so yeon the main character, sheesh!

    • 49.1 kumon

      my point exactly. can’t agree more.

  50. 50 karen

    I like this pairing! I’ve only seen Chuno so far.

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