After taking several weeks off the air to let its star recover from a serious car accident injury, it turns out that weekend KBS sageuk King’s Dream has to lose Park Joo-mi from its cast after all.
I’m not surprised by the news — each update over the past weeks hinted that Park was not improving, despite assurances that she would return to filming soon — but rather the fact that it took something like this for the show to actually realize that sometimes you can’t just insist filming continue in impossible conditions. How did it take nearly a month after the car accident (which totaled Park’s vehicle) for producers to finally give up on hoping for miracles? After all, doctors said at the outset that Park would need four to five weeks of absolute rest, and yet all sides were so sure that two weeks would be enough for her to come back to shoots.
Park Joo-mi plays a major character — Queen Seon-deok — which is why the show opted to take two weeks off the air rather than writing her out of the plot or recasting with a new actress. I suspect that they would have pushed forth with Park anyway, had not her biggest health concern been with an infection of her vocal cords, rendering her unable to speak.
Currently the drama is searching for a replacement. Initially the two-week hiatus meant that new episodes were supposed to resume this weekend, but the break has been extended for another two weeks. A four-episode special will air in the interim, and new episodes will resume on December 8.