Drama Casting & News
Kim Joo-hyuk headlines Heo Jun remake
by | January 22, 2013 | 18 Comments

And Heo Jun has its Heo Jun — Kim Joo-hyuk (God of War) has signed on to play the titular hero in the new MBC daily sageuk biopic called Gu-am Heo Jun (for Heo Jun’s pen name, Gu-am) about the life and career of legendary Joseon royal physician. He’s interestingly following in his father’s footsteps in taking on the role — Kim Joo-hyuk’s father, the late veteran actor Kim Mu-saeng, played Heo Jun way back in 1975.

There’s something so cool about that kind of legacy. Kim Mu-saeng, who passed away in 2005, was a dramaland veteran who was in every drama ever. (I just remember him as the dad/chairman in all the late ’90s dramas.) Heo Jun is a story that gets remade in every generation, and Kim Joo-hyuk said of the connection: “Heo Jun is my fate.”

This rendition is a direct remake of the 1999 drama, which starred Jeon Gwang-ryul in the title role and reached an insane 65% ratings peak. The 120-episode drama will be about the life and career of medical historian Heo Jun, who became a royal doctor during King Seonjo’s reign in the late 16th century. He went on to write the definitive text on traditional Korean medicine in Hangul so that even commoners could learn to practice medicine.

Han Chae-ah and Namgoong Min have been cast as the heroine and second lead, and veteran actors Baek Yoon-shik (Tree With Deep Roots) and Go Doo-shim (If Tomorrow Comes) have also joined the cast. Baek Yoon-shik will play Heo Jun’s teacher, Yoo Ui-tae, a central figure in the drama version of the Heo Jun tale. Go Doo-shim will play Heo Jun’s mother.

It seems like MBC’s putting a lot of eggs into the basket with this daily sageuk, and hoping that the remake will recreate the success of the original (on a sliding scale, of course — 65% is unheard of nowadays). It’ll be interesting to watch and see if bringing back the daily sageuk pans out for the network.

Gu-am Heo Jun premieres in March, and will have a six-month run on MBC.

Via E Daily, Joy News


18 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. snow_white

    thanks for the news..

    • 1.1 JO

      meaning: I will watch this definitely for sure now!!

  2. Annie

    Yay for casting a quality actor.

    • 2.1 Annie

      But I hope he hasn’t broken up with Kim Kyuri – a daily is a big committment and he’s already 40.

  3. Ivoire

    Thank you for the news!

  4. reina

    anyone know who’s the 3rd man in the banner??

  5. girlatsea

    Ahh sounds really interesting but I doubt there will be subs 🙁

    • 5.1 Annie

      This is going to be one of MBC’s signature productions for 2013 so you never know. I’ve seen less noteworthy dramas get subbed.

  6. blokkoms

    Is anyone else reminded of Skip Beat and Ren in Dark Moon?

    • 6.1 Ahjumma

      LOL YES!

  7. comradeS

    I previously said that I was sad Nam Goongmin wasn’t the lead, but Kim Joo-hyuk is a perfect choice. Doesn’t mean I’ll watch it though. I couldn’t even finish “God of War” last year, though those beginning episodes were amazing.

  8. Melmax

    Great pairing!!! I hope it gets subbed and is on Dramafever, thanks… can’t wait to see this.

  9. anais

    I actually watched various episodes of the 1999 Heo Jun, one of those that my mom was eager for me to watch when I came back home for vacations. No wonder it reached 65% ratings. It was one of those dramas that made you feel so proud to be a Korean. Me like Kim Joo Hyuk, so I look forward to the new rendition, though 100+ episodes? Yikes. I recently watched Immortal Yi Soon Shin, and that nearly did me in.

  10. 10 JoJo

    I love his acting, and if it shows up on one of the cable channels here, I’ll DVR it…100+ eps is a lot.

  11. 11 jessiefuschia

    saeguk… again?? x_X

  12. 12 kdwkyah

    Juliaaannnn! Haha, it will be funny if it competes with ‘that winter the wind blows’!

  13. 13 cvang010

    Heo Jun is actually….. DR. JIN that traveled back in time! lol

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