Drama Casting & News
Chae Rim signs on to new drama
by | November 27, 2012 | 69 Comments

Chae Rim is up for a new drama (yay), but it won’t be a Korean series (boo); she’s announced that her new project will be a series called Lee Family for China’s CCTV (Chinese title 李家大院). It comes from director Zhang Shaolin, who also worked on Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Hong Mo Fan.

Bummer. I really like Chae Rim, but I really wanted her back in a Korean drama, especially since she hasn’t done a good one in years. When she’s on, she’s so charming and funny (see: Dal Ja’s Spring, still one of my favorite rom-coms), but for some reason she’s been taking roles for older characters, many of them ajummas and single moms. (See: the less exciting Good Job, Good Job and Oh My Lady.) She’s only now 33, but she’s been playing mid-thirties characters for the last five years; what gives?

In any case, this new drama sounds like a melo, with a moving story and lots of emotion. It stars Chae Rim as a young widow, described as “lovely, wise, and skilled.” Yay for that, at least. After losing her husband, she uses her brains and her wisdom as a businesswoman and steps up as leader of the Lee family.

On the upside, in her statement about the role, Chae Rim added, “Shortly, I’ll be able to give my fans at home some good news, so I hope you’ll cheer me on.” Is it a drama, at home this time? It had better be.

Lee Family will begin filming in China, and Chae Rim has already headed to China for shoots.



69 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. Jacq

    I love her!!!

    • 1.1 Ivoire

      If her voice is dubbed (which is what I am assuming, based on the few comments I have read here), will she be reading/saying her lines out loud (while filming with her fellow actors) or would she just mouth them?
      If she has to say her lines out loud, they would be in Chinese, right? Which she speaks? Or doesn’t that matter?

      • 1.1.1 dongdong

        what i noticed in T-dramas are that the korean actors will speak in mandarin when the lines are short, but most of the time they speak in korean. Of course, later on, all their parts are dubbed, so there’s actually no difference, LOL! but it’s really a pain in ass hole to watch the dubbed versions.. to make the matter worse, when T-dramas are aired in China, they will dub the whole thing again, in Chinese accent, even if both ‘countries’ speak mandarin.. == #chinese

        • kakashi

          that’s interesting, thanks!

        • Jessica

          Sometimes the dubbing is really good though. I guess it just depends on the voice actor.

          For example, in Taiwan they’re broadcasting
          Yellow Boots
          and the dubbing is really, really good. You can barely tell and at 100+ episodes it makes watching it so much easier.

          Though I do agree it’s crazy they re-dub Taiwanese actors just because of the accent. But they only seem to do that for dramas set in ancient times. Modern dramas seem to use the actors original voice.

          • bjharm

            yes you right a good voice dub actor is worth their weight in gold, it not just speaking you have to ‘act’! as well
            The chinese well even dub other mainland actors if their chinese is not up to standard it not just Taiwanese or hongkong or even korean actors.
            Jang Nara who acted in chinese for her last drama racecourse was still voice dubbed in the end, so most non mainland actors do not even bother trying to act in chinese as they know they going to end up getting dubbed anyway. Also often to speed up production the chinese skip on sounds mics and the like and just dub everything later in the studio. I may be mistaken but I believe there some kind of Government test for Chinese drama/film they have to pass before they not dubbed into ‘standard’ chinese..again Jang Nara had to pass it before her efforts in acting in chinese in her film Flying Me was allowed and she was not voice dubbed as she was in Racecourse.

        • Annie

          Correction: there isn’t a Chinese accent; its more accurate to say Chinese dialect. Even though people in Taiwan and Mainland China speak Mandarin, there’s a regional difference.

    • 1.2 kk

      That’s S. korea for you .. once you turned 30, you are considered as OLD(er) lady, men are okay … even if the actresses looked youthful, they don’t cast her in younger roles??!??

  2. birdscout

    Am currently rewatching Dalja’s Spring and loving it! (again) Her hair is so unique…I’m tempted to get a perm, but I know it would not turn out the same on my head. LOL

    • 2.1 nomu nomu nomu

      It also wouldn’t turn out the same on MANY k-drama heroine. Is it me, or has there been more and more bad permed hair in Dramaland lately? I had re-watched Dajal’s Spring about two or three weeks ago, still entertaining even though its quite old now.

      • 2.1.1 nomu nomu nomu

        *Dal Ja’s Spring

        I really need to read my post before submitting it. lol

    • 2.2 mary

      I also managed to force my sister to watch Dalja’s Spring just last week!

      That’s because everything is BUCKET. OF. TEARS. in dramaland right now. Tsk tsk.. and just when I got her addicted to kdramas by throwing FBRS, SUFBB, QIHM at her in rapid succession. Luckily, she liked Dalja’s Spring! 😀

      Back to the topic…

      Featured image: YEY! CHAE RIM IS BACK!
      Chinese drama announcement: Awww… I don’t know where to watch…
      Chae Rim’s promise to Korean fans: YEY!!! SOMETHING IS BREWING!!!

  3. jyyjc

    She starred in my very first korean drama ever! All About Eve starring her and Kim soyeon. I must say, news about her doesn’t frequent the media much.

    • 3.1 catndhat

      She’s low profile.

  4. danna

    She’s only now 33, but she’s been playing mid-thirties characters for the last five years; what gives?
    I have a sneaking suspicion that this is in soneway related to her image after her divorce?!
    But yea, its a total shame that she’s been relageted to playing ahjumma roles when she should be doing much more than that

    • 4.1 Eo

      Yeah, you’re right. It’s a shame indeed. She is a such great actress. Love her!

  5. YM

    Dislike…her voice will definitely get dubbed over. The main reason I do not like Chinese dramas. It drives me insannnneee that they do that!

    • 5.1 Dix

      I feel the same way too. I wanted to watch Siwon’s drama but I couldn’t get over the voice and the movement of the mouth didn’t match. What’s the point, just use a Chinese star.

      • 5.1.1 bjharm

        they changed the voice actor for him and it got better it not just speaking the language they also have to act!
        But really voice dub when done well you get used to as you do so with subbing. Do not know how often i heard the remark ow it a good drama but for the subs..lol

        • bjharm

          ow by the way..even though they do not use the voice they still act or should do its a tricky skill but important to speak and act as if everyone understood what you were saying, often using more body and face to help. Siwon was really bad at that in the start but as time wnet on he seems to get the idea that he was not there just to move his mouth he also had to act!

        • JL

          You guys are talking about Skip Beat, right? Yeah, they changed the voice actor for Siwon after the second episode or so. It was a huge improvement. (I mean, I love Kunda, but his voice was not suitable for Siwon’s Dun Helian whatsoever.)

          Honestly, Skip Beat is so worth it if you’re able to look past the dub and unaligned mouth movement. Plus, Donghae’s dub suited him really well. This isn’t to say that I wouldn’t have preferred Chinese or Taiwanese actors in lieu of Siwon and Donghae; I just took it for what it was worth, and it ended up being a very satisfying and worthwhile experience.

  6. Ladytron33

    Yeah, I just don’t get why she’s always portrayed as being “old” and plain in all of these dramas. She is soooo beautiful and still pretty young. I know standards for women’s youth and beauty are quite different (and in my opinion, quite rigid) in Asia, but come on folks!

    Anyway, I hope she does something fun in the Kdrama world soon. I loved DJS and I also really liked Oh My Lady (not for the romance as much, but the too cute little girls). I’d love to see her in a role where she wasn’t considered over the hill.

  7. becca_boo

    My reaction was the same as yours: “Yay! wait – aw, bummer.” I was just wishing the other day for Chae Rim to come back to dramaland – I guess I should have been more specific. Anyway, I wish her luck and will continue to look forward to her next (Korean) project.

  8. Rose

    Hai..i one of big fans of Chae rim from malaysia, until today still waitig for one drama mature love paired by chae rim and alec su they really perfect couple..hope any producer can bring them come back together, i think not only me waiting they come back make a romance but a lot of fans outsite..pleaseeee

    • 8.1 bjharm

      lol you know she was slated to make Bratty Princess 2? Bratty Princess had Jang Nara and Alec Su but she didnt want the same role twice so they picked Chea Rim for the next part..sadly it fell through or you may have got your wish.

      • 8.1.1 Rose

        I know about this rumous before but at the end no news ..reaaly hope they will come back together…or maybe alec su not interesting to team work with chae rim anymore…

  9. ricky

    I like chae rim a lot. Her role in dal ja’s spring made me a fan of the whole noona-romance theme in kdramas. Can’t get enough of it now.

  10. 10 Annie

    It’s a pity more people don’t give Chinese dramas a try – I admit that the dubbing can get really annoying, but many of them are so meaningful and moving. Not to mention some of the period dramas, which are just exquisite.

    • 10.1 mary

      Oh, in relation to one of my earlier comments, I do love the few Chinese and Taiwanese dramas I was able to watch. 🙂

      It’s not the high-pitched voices that bother me when Korean dramas or actresses are dubbed. I just find the disconnect between the actor’s facial expression and the dubbed voice sometimes jarring and it ruins the moment for me. So I wish to see Chae Rim in a korean drama.

      • 10.1.1 Annie

        No worries, it’s a personal preference. And I agree with the notion that the fewer Korean actors in Chinese dramas, the better. I can’t imagine how awkward it must be for everyone involved.

    • 10.2 jomo

      I agree. It is strange to have some voices dubbed, and some not, like in Drama Go Go Go, but somehow you do get used to it.

      I’m finding that dubbing isn’t the main obstacle to watching T and Maninland dramas, it’s finding a watchable version, subbed that is online.

      When you think about the size of the audience for some of these shows, it is mind boggling. 100+ million for a daily show? That’s an all-time high for ONE broadcasted show in the States – MASH finale.

      • 10.2.1 Annie

        Dubbing is really helpful since there are loads of regional dialects/accents that need to be standardized but surely there must be some better way to sync dialogue with footage. There’s gotta be. The weird part is that mainland studios are rolling in dough so it’s not really a budget issue.

        • YM

          I get the dubbing for the dialect reason, but can’t they do sub titles? Taiwanese dramas aren’t dubbed. Do they have a standardized dialect for TV?

          And, what bothers me the most about the dubbing IS the high pitched voices. It drives me insaaaane. I loooved Single Princess and blind dates but I found it odd that only the main chick was dubbed and the supporting leads were not.

          • Annie

            Mainland people *cough* Beijingers *cough* are pretty anal about accents. I guess things are much more relaxed in Taiwan because those dramas are rarely, if ever, dubbed.

            Re: only one lead being dubbed, I think it has to do with how well you can mimic a Beijing accent. I haven’t watched that drama but I’m surprised Jimmy Lin wasn’t dubbed too. Hmm.

          • bjharm

            I think it is a government thing the standard Beijing accent is the official version of maderian and they very strict on allowing accents on TV. As for mainland TV well they make like 550 drama a year! There no way they can sub them so they do not bother..after all the internal market so huge I do not think they even think of selling them outside of china on the main

        • JL

          It seems as though if an actor is popular enough, he/she doesn’t get dubbed… In a few C-dramas I’ve watched, only the leads and second leads weren’t dubbed (again, possibly due to the actors’ popularity / high demand for no dub), while everyone else was.

          Sometimes I don’t understand why actors have to be dubbed if their accent is mutually intelligible with the standardized accent (e.g. ‘Taiwanese-accented’ Mandarin vs. Standard Mandarin). One can argue that the standardized accent = storyline consistency, but the dub in itself sometimes detracts from the plot because it’s so distracting. PLUS, there are almost always Chinese hardsubs, so who needs to hear the dialogue when they can read it? ᅲᅲ

          I can understand dubbing mainly in period dramas, because these often have ensemble casts with actors from a multitude of areas (extending to heavy Cantonese accents from Hong Kong, etc.), and accent consistency is particularly key in this genre; but in modern C-dramas, it’s just blerghhh.

          Just rantin’… not directed to anyone in particular. :’)

          • dongdong

            agree.. and a lot of times dubbing only makes it unnatural… it just feels more natural when there’s some dialect in the conversation.. that’s how we converse in real life..

            i can’t imagine how serious they have to dub if Malaysian/Singaporean dramas were to be aired in China,, LOL! we basically mixed all the languages and dialects in our converstions.. English, Mandarin, Malay, Cantonese, Hokkien, etc…

          • Jessica

            A part of me also wonders if they have problems recording sound?

            A lot of period dramas use amazing outside scenes so it must be tough to get good quality sound. So they have to re-record the dialogue anyways.

            And perhaps it’s too expensive sometimes to get the same actor to do it?

            But yeah, a lot of the main actors, if they have a good voice will get to re-record the dialogue themselves.

            Still, I hope China can really change the dubbing part of their shows. It’s annoying that I can’t hear their actual voice.

            It’s like when I grew up watching TVB dramas dubbed in Mandarin, not realizing what their real voice was like!

          • bjharm

            @ Jessica
            you find a lot of chinese drama skip on sound mic and the like and indeed do dub themselves later in studio

          • Jessica

            @ bjharm

            Ah, yeah, that make sense. Thanks for the info 🙂

  11. 11 Annie

    Also, Chae Rim’s image took a major hit after her divorce. You won’t be seeing her playing more youthful roles anytime soon – which is a damn shame. Even Go Hyun Jung couldn’t escape typecasting.

  12. 12 Mar

    I like this actress too. I would love to see her in more roles. It’s demoralizing about the issues women have to deal with in the entertainment business. Hell, in life. 33, she’s in the prime of her life. I’d be happy to watch her in a romance drama whether shes 23, 33, 43, 53, whatever, whether she’s divorced, shacking up with a harem of hotties, or a nun.

  13. 13 Jeannette

    I’m watching Dal Ja’s Spring for the first time right now! LITERALLY, right now! Rep Eom is driving up and I want to punch him. I have no idea why she’s playing women older than herself. And why a Chinese drama? *sigh* I absolutely LOVE her. I love this drama. Come back to Korea!

  14. 14 Ara

    I’m not quite sure that Chae Rim is the leading lady of the drama – it’s supposed to center around her brother in law and his family.

    • 14.1 catndhat

      If I’m not mistaken, even the news in China, she was identified as the female lead.

  15. 15 Ennayra

    I love her because of Dal Ja’s Spring. Hope she picks another great drama soon.

  16. 16 saranga

    i loved dalja’s spring! as for chae-rim taking more older, ajumma-ish roles, i suspect/wonder if it has anything to do with her marriage and subsequent divorce. of course, she did do dalja, but if she hadn’t gotten married/divorced so young and so early, maybe different kinds of roles would be available to her. kim tae-hee is roughly the same age, and i’m sure we won’t see her in an ajumma role anytime soon.

  17. 17 cg

    she was amazing in Dalja’s spring 🙂

  18. 18 kami

    Chae Rim on CCTV…wow… congrats !

    China with +/- 2 billion of people…

    Love her… smart move…

  19. 19 Tha

    I love her! She needs another role like Dal Ja’s Spring! So so good….I shall re-watch!

  20. 20 chaepenn

    finally she’s back in small screen. we really miss her….hope to watch her in korean drama after this drama.

  21. 21 Nathalia

    Yehey! Glad that she’s back, even if it’s a chinese drama, better than not having to see her at all 🙂

  22. 22 Ting

    Mainland dramas will dub for any number of reasons..

    Wuxias are almost always dubbed( actually, they’re pretty much always dubbed, but a large part of that besides the fact that sometimes the actors/actresses voice doesn’t suit the part.. is also because the sets themselves have a lot of background noise and the voices of actors/actresses sometimes get lost in the melee) Thus.. they dub over it instead with voice actors

    With other dramas a lot of it is just consistency of accent because they want all the actors/actresses to have a standard Beijing/mainland accent. Mainland dramas will also dub their own.. i.e. giving everyone a standard Beijing accent when the actors/actresses are actually from various regions around China…

    That said.. a handful of actors and I think that’s what JL is referring to do dub their own dramas. Vicky Zhao( Xiao Yan Zhi in Princess Returning Pearl) dubs all her own and Hu Ge( Legend of Condor Heroes 2008,) has dubbed all his own except for one or two I believe.

    With Taiwan, they don’t really care and usually the only time they dub over accents is if it’s an actor who’s not Chinese and is speaking their lines in another language.

    As for Chae Rim.. being Chinese I first started seeing her mostly in Chinese dramas and to be honest, at the time I didn’t realize she was Korean. I only realized that within the last year or two when I Oh, My Lady and Dal Ja’s Spring.

    The drama sounds intriguing, but admittedly I usually stick to mainland wuxia with a handful of modern Chinese dramas here and there. I’m mostly used to the dubbing by now though since wuxia is always dubbed…

    • 22.1 Jessica

      Sometimes the dubbing is really good too. Like the person who does Jang Nara’s voice sounds almost exactly like her!

      It’s uncanny 🙂

      • 22.1.1 bjharm

        lol you mean in Bratty Princess? if so sadly that voice actress had to retire..to many days in small sound rooms with freezing cold and smokers..:-(
        If you watch Jang Nara’s Film Flying with you you can hear her acting in chinese, though they explain any accent by saying she was brought up in…..korea! lol

        • Jessica

          Oh, that’s such a pity! Yeah, the Bratty Princess voice was so good because she could act as well. Sigh…

          And yeah, actually Jang Nara’s Chinese is quite good too 🙂

    • 22.2 bjharm

      well i could have saved myself a lot of typing if i had rolled down to this post lol
      Even down to the point that you do get used to voice dubbing as you do in watching drama with subs.
      They have some very good voice dubbers in china though it can be confusing when all the male leads or heroines sound the same lol. I watched Jang Nara’s Bratty Princess then Ariel Lins Seven fairies and the same voice actress did both..kind of a double take..but you get used to it.

    • 22.3 JL

      I’m pretty sure I’ve seen Mainland dramas where the leads didn’t have to dub over themselves, but those are mainly modern ones which, as you’ve mentioned, don’t have to deal with as much background noise. I completely understand that it’s preferable for period dramas and wuxias to be dubbed; it’s strange at times, but it’s not hard to get used to either, since essentially that was also the ‘accent’ of the era.

      I was about to say that I haven’t seen Chae Rim in anything, until I did a little research and realized that I’ve watched her before. I might tune in for this drama, but we’ll see.

      @Jessica Jang Nara’s voice actress in My Bratty Princess was downright amazinggg. @bjharm I saw her in Flying with You as well. She’s so cute when she speaks Mandarin! It almost sounds like she has a speech impediment, but she totally rocks that language lisp.

      • 22.3.1 bjharm

        @JL funny you say Jang Nara sounds like she has a lisp when she speaks Mandarin, as if you ever here her singing in english you get the very same thing, cute as though.

  23. 23 Rach^^

    I loved her in Oh! Pil Seung, really hope she can do a Korean drama soon. Btw is she one of the lowest profile celeb ever?? It’s so hard to have news of her!

  24. 24 Nadine

    I wish Chae Rim had played the role of Seo Yi-soo in a Gentleman’s Dignity. I enjoyed her in All About Eve opposite Jang Dong-gun. It would have been nice to see them act together again in a Korean drama 12 years later.

  25. 25 owl

    Ooo – one more place for me to say how much I luv Dalja’s Spring!! I am a new Chae Rim fan (only seen her in DS) but really loved her in that romcom (with her AAdorable boyfriend-for-hire). Nadine, I would never have given it a thought, but wow, your comment that Chae Rim would have been great in Gentleman’s Dignity is a yes! in my head!

    I know you’ll keep us posted, javabeans, it the “good news for home fans” means a kdrama. Thanks!

  26. 26 Melmax

    Congratulations Chae Rim, I’m sad it’s not Korean but what a large audience who love you just like the rest of us, wonderful. You’ve been in some great dramas AAE. OML… DS, LITA, 4Sis, DN, PO, etc.. I’m glad for you, I agree A Gentlemen’s Agreement would have been suitable for you, but I still love Oh Pil Seung & Bon Son Young which my husband & I totally enjoyed your talent for the first time-thanks for the news hope we can easily see this drama..

  27. 27 catndhat

    I love her!

    Unfortunately, it is seldom that there’s any news about her. She’s so low profile, she usually doesn’t grant to be interviewed except on set or during presscon.

    She was out of the spotlight especially last year, seems like she took a break, do some charity work and took time to travel. She posted several pics of her just about two weeks ago after being inactive in her cyworld account.

    I really, really hope that the good news to her Korean fans will push through. 🙂

    And honestly, aside from being divorced (technically she isn’t because the marriage wasn’t registered), I really think that it was because of her superb performance as Dal Ja that they keep giving her ahjumma roles. And I hope she won’t accept any ahjumma roles anytime soon.

    Chae Rim fightinG! 😀

    • 27.1 catndhat

      *did some charity work

  28. 28 hankk

    I am one of those fans that live far away from Korea, but one that got hooked on KDrama because of Chae Rim as Dalja, some years ago.

    She is The Great Clown of Korean drama, and missed very much there by many.
    I hope the hint she gave, according to an article in Dramabeans, about “having some plans in Korea” will come true.

  29. 29 dee

    Go Chae rim!!

    Whether Korean or Chinese I will surely watch it. But I do hope her next project will be Korean.. I miss her so much!! Since I watched her in AAE I started to admire her acting and everything about her and I will always support her in anything. I feel so inspired when I watch her!

    Chae rim unnie aja!
    Take Care!

  30. 30 zool

    omg..i love her so much since all about eve..i followed most of her korean drama..this news makes me happy but i would be happier if she can starred in korean drama..n agreed with the writer, its so strange, y she always got role for mid 30’s lady, she’s just 33..i can say that she’s very talented in acting (not being biased..lol) compared to some of actresses..i hope she will get adventurous role or more challenging i would say..started from dal ja’s spring (1 of my fav rom-com), she always got old role..they changed her hair (shorter, curly) to make her look older..sighh..with long hair she looks more younger (oh feel young), her face itself looks younger..anyway, as a fan, ill always want her to come back with a good drama..cheers!! 🙂

  31. 31 Su

    Just want to say a word….” sweetheart”….

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