Drama Casting & News
Queen Seon-deok, Tree with Deep Roots team returns with new drama
by | May 7, 2013 | 76 Comments

All hail — the true kings and queens of sageuk are returning. That’d be the creative people behind Queen Seon-deok and Tree With Deep Roots, otherwise known as midas touch writers Kim Young-hyun and Park Sang-yeon. They have the distinction of writing “well-made sageuk” (just a moniker for high production value) that also gets good ratings, which is not a thing to trifle with in dramaland. The new project is called Unprecedented, which has successfully set my expectations sky high with the title alone. I hope you weren’t trying to undersell the thing, ’cause then you might want to call it something a little less auspicious.

They’re reteaming with Queen Seon-deok’s director Park Hong-kyun, who directed the Hong Sisters rom-com Best Love in the years since Seon-deok and New Heart. The new drama is months away from broadcast at the earliest, and is being planned as a special presentation drama at MBC for 2014.

It’s a political action drama set in early Joseon, and specifically about “the heroes who founded the nation.” The central story will be Jung Do-jeon vs. Lee Bang-won. Jung Do-jeon was a scholar and advisor to King Taejo (first king of Joseon), who influenced the political future of the country for centuries to come, by designing the political infrastructure from laws to taxes to education. In short, he was the political brains behind the founding of Joseon.

Lee Bang-won was the fifth son of King Taejo, and future King Taejong of Joseon (father of Sejong the Great). While Jung Do-jeon believed in a political system governed by ministers and a centralized bureaucracy, Lee Bang-won believed in an absolute monarchy. He was overlooked to succeed his father to the throne because of Jung Do-jeon’s influence, and so during the reign of his brother, he raided the palace, killed Jung Do-jeon, and became the third king.

It’s pretty much as high-stakes as a political thriller can get for source material, and it’ll be like a prequel to Tree With Deep Roots, which will be fun. I can’t wait till they start casting calls for the two leads who will battle it out for Joseon’s future.

Unprecented is headed to MBC in 2014.

Via Xports News


76 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. bubbles

    wow can’t wait!!

  2. browncoat_78

    I’ll had to see what Tree with Deep Roots and Queen Seon Deok and I’m in. I give both of those dramas 10s and I give almost nothing a 10. Those are two of my favorites of all time.

  3. Y.

    I /LOVED/ Tree (which might have been one of the reasons I thought Moon/Sun was extremely overrated, but that’s another story) and I’ve been waiting for months to have some free time so I can watch QSD. New drama by the same team? I’m in regardless the plot/actors, but that plot sounds cool so yeah, highly looking forward do it.

    • 3.1 YT629

      So excited! I’ve been waiting for a big scale, big stakes sageuk! Gu Family book and Jang ok jung are both good, but not really “epic,” if you know what I mean. And anything with the intelligence and taut writing of Tree with Deep Roots is fine in my book. The Princess’ Man had more of an emotional pull than Tree with Deep Roots, I thought. But both were infinitely better than Moon Embracing the Sun. Moon/Sun was the simplest, most illogical fusion sageuk out of the three. What does it say about korean audiences that Moon/Sun was the most popular? I have this theory that koreans complain about the familiar elements of birth secrets, first love, mistaken identity, etc. etc. but if the kdrama becomes too complex or “smart,” it becomes “inaccessible” for the general audience and therefore doesn’t become a hit. Think about the last couple of kdramas that breached 40%. There’s a pattern….

      • 3.1.1 Shiku

        If you want a big stakes saguek currently airing, you should probably watch Cruel Palace: War of the Flowers. It’s so awesome! And Headsno2 did an intro to it last week.

        • Kiara

          And Jung is a much better conventional sageuk writer.

        • Y.

          I had that series under my radar because I read it was quite good, and that intro made me want to watch it even more. There’re two things that I don’t really like though: 1) It’s a long drama (50 episodes iirc) and 2) exams are coming soon T_T I will wait until summer at least (hopefully links won’t be down by then!)

      • 3.1.2 eny

        agree that moon/sun rating is overate, it’s unbelievable the rating is 40%

        • Annie


          Still don’t understand it to this day.

        • Kiara

          Perfect timing, there was no competition. It was also based on a popular selling novel. All of the characters were fictional including the king. There was no bitching about historical inaccuracies etc etc.
          I’m guessing that JOJ would have been a hit if it has nothing to do with history.

          • Annie

            Agree about JOJ. It’s too far out of left field for Koreans I guess. But they also seem to love hating on Kim Tae Hee’s acting. I wonder how the reception would have been if Shin Se Kyung accepted the role in the first place.

          • ilikemangos


            The chemistry would probably not be the same — > my addiction wouldn’t be as great. imo, the romance is really the thing holding up the whole show.
            I’ve always found shin se kyung to be a bit bland, not that KTH is the greatest actress out there.. But the dynamic between KTH/YAI is overwhelmingly passionate and stirring that i find it hard to imagine it being shin se kyung instead.

          • Autumn

            God, I love JOJ.

            It is my current drama crack, historical inaccuracies be damned.

          • KDaddict

            At first I found it heretic in portraying JOJ as this sweet naive perfect n most beautiful girl in the land of a fashion designer! That fashion show was def OTT. I’d have left permanently if not for YAI. His performance gradually rails me in. He is pretty intense, n the romance is too. Now I see what they r trying to do w the story: Use the political struggle between the 2 factions to explain/re-imagine the historical struggle between QIH n JHB to the death. Of course it is romanticized. Us overseas fans just enjoy it for the pretty. Koreans would have a hard time swallowing that story whole. I love Nine, Cruel War, End of the W, GFB a great deal, but JOJ is crack. πŸ™‚

        • bd

          So is GFB.

  4. Rin

    Aww, I really like QSD but haven’t gotten the chance to watch TWDR yet but if they cast leads I like in this series, I’ll definitely watch it! πŸ™‚

    • 4.1 KDaddict

      QSD, TwDR, Gt Seerer. A lot of homework b4 Unprecedented comes on. Gt Summer assignment.

  5. mav

    I wish Song Joon Ki gets the lead role.. I know it aint happening but still I can wish….

    • 5.1 Leona

      I wish Kim Nam Gil as the bad sexy guy… c’mon it is possible because at that time Shark will be history.

      • 5.1.1 Kiara

        Nah she’ll make a new star. She made Kim Nam Gil famous with QSD and brough the best out of Song Joon Ki in Tree. I’m hoping an underrated actor or actress will get his/her turn to shine in this drama.

        • Annie

          I’m betting Kim – Park will go for the big guns in terms of the two main leads but I can see the Jung Do Jeon role going to a sageuk veteran rather than a top star.

  6. Kiara

    I knew it, once President Kim Jae Chul resigned Kim Young-hyun will return to MBC. I do have a love hate relationship with her especially during QSD. I was disappointed that she gave into the fans demand for the sake of the ratings but I forgave her after Tree With Deep Roots.

    • 6.1 belleza

      “I was disappointed that she gave into the fans demand”

      The Bidam Army changed history (almost!) πŸ˜‰

      • 6.1.1 Rovi

        Haha, but basically Bidam DID rebel, with his cause that “Women cannot rule”. Earlier on QSD Bidam already heard of a female being sole ruler (Hatshepsut), and early on was kind of averse to it already.

      • 6.1.2 Kiara

        Lol causing the real Bidam to roll over his grave at the thought of being in love with the queen he was trying to over throw.

  7. Abbie

    Sounds really intriguing and interesting. Looking forward to seeing it.

  8. Ivoire

    Thank you!

  9. spark

    lee young hyun is my favorite writer EVER. dae jang geum, queen seon deok, tree with deep roots… she never disappoints.

    • 9.1 spark

      whoops, *kim young hyun, typo.

  10. 10 glace

    So the story is like a continuation of The Great Seer! I loved that time period, the founding of Joseon.

    • 10.1 Aqqa1

      I’ve watched The Great Seer and Tree with Deep Roots. This will be a missing part between those two. πŸ™‚

    • 10.2 Rovi

      Wae, where did “Feng Shui Master Great Seer” cut off?

      Actually, if you can find some time, “Tears of the Dragon” is a great reference for the time period; from the last vestiges of Goryeo to until Taejong’s death. One of PD Kim Jae-hyeong’s greatest works, bless his soul.

      • 10.2.1 Kiara

        The Great Seer was a mess. β€œTears of the Dragon” was a much better drama but very long. I think it was over 150 episodes?.

        • Rovi

          Oh really? XP

          Yes, well any drama by PD Kim Jae-hyeong was >150 long. But yes, “Tears of the Dragon” is excellent source for info regarding Goryeo’s decline and Joseon’s Foundation. And basically ToD was one of the golden age sageuks… πŸ™

  11. 11 kdwkyah

    YESSSSHHHH, I loved TWDR! Will definitely be keeping my eye on this!!!!

  12. 12 Danna

    I was gonna say it would be nice to have Song Joong Ki & Baek Yoon Shik cameos in the latter half of this show since its a sorta prequel to TWDR…that is until I remembered that Song Joong Ki will be going to the army later this year πŸ™

    • 12.1 KDaddict

      Oh nooo! He is going away without leaving another drama behind besides Nice Guy? Didn’t enjoy that one bcos of the story. I hope he’ll make a drama that I can watch abt 20 times, once for each month that he is in MS!

  13. 13 snow_white

    Another sageuk….!!!
    I haven’t seen any of the two shows…but after reading so much praise, I think I should give them a try πŸ™‚

  14. 14 foulou

    Dammmmnnnnn…Tree With Deep Roots was good. Best drama of 2011.

  15. 15 Mia

    Saw Queen Seon Deok, then Tree With Deep Roots and I know this will be epic. QSD was my first historical drama, and I followed it until the end, with a glitch during the last 10 episodes, it was just too sad for me, gehh. Similar with TWDR, though I read most of the recaps here instead. I was just so connected with both, that I feel like I die everytime, someone dies.
    Though I’m anticipating it, I’ll be watching far away show. Sry I’m weak. πŸ™

  16. 16 Naugh

    If it saeguk drama…,then..,they should cast the KING and QUEEN of SAEGUK instead..
    KIM SOO HYUN and MOON CHAE WON look perfect..!

    • 16.1 eny

      i choose kim sung soo if they choose mature actor, he will be really charismatic king, his acting is good n he never doing sageuk n joo won for younger actor…………if they cast him i will really happy

    • 16.2 Jo

      I love Kim Soo Hyun but…but…I want someone else for this sageuk. And Moon is lovely…but once again, someone else.
      I hope they choose people with the “traditional” look instead of someone who looks more modern (i.e. big huge eyes )

      • 16.2.1 Naugh

        hurmm…then they should cast Yoon Jin Yi..they should upgrade her profile to the main cast..did’t she free right now..??

        • haha


      • 16.2.2 Guest

        when i think of traditional look, i think of soo ae………..

  17. 17 Annie

    The casting for this one will be interesting. Lee Bang Won becomes king when he is 33 but he seems to have been quite the schemer even at age 15… I like Jang Hyuk for the adult role and, in my dreams, Jung Il Woo as his younger counterpart. As for Jeong Do Jeon, we’d need an elder statesman type. Maybe Yoo Dong Geun? That would be an interesting twist.

    • 17.1 Rovi

      Please, not Jang Hyuk. I just don’t like him for such a very meaty role; Taejong’s a schemer through and through, even when he was already King; his conflicts with Grand Prince Yangnyeong (one of Sejong’s older brothers) were something.

      Yoo Dong-geun already did Taejong 17 years ago at “Tears of the Dragon”, and frankly speaking, even though he’d be perfect, he already looks too old even for his old adversary’s role Jeong Do-jeon (Kim Heung-ki was the last actor to play him); just look at some of the stills of GFB (where he’s Yi Sun-shin).

      (Now I see, I get that “interesting twist”. Hihihi~)

      • 17.1.1 Kiara

        Right and Kim Young-hyun is not one to pick the same actors twice for any of her projects and I like that about her. She’ll probably go after 1 A-lister, that would be able to carry the show to the end like Lee Young Ae in Dae Jang Geum, Ko Hyun Jung in QSD and Han Suk Kyu in Tree.

  18. 18 Deliane

    I absolutely loved Tree so looking forward to this… though it’ll only be out a year later! Hope new stars are spotlighted in this drama.

  19. 19 Jo

    The writers of TREE?
    I didn’t really enjoy Queen very much but Tree (excluding the last episode) was excellent!

    • 19.1 Aqqa1

      It was opposite for me. Loved Queen, Tree was so so in my opinion.

  20. 20 mai

    QSD and TWDR are excellent. i love both dramas.
    Can’t wait for this historical drama ^^

  21. 21 MIKAN

    yay! can’t wait! love QSD and tree so much

  22. 22 earthna

    WHOA. I’m in just by the title. Unprecedented. If that didn’t sound cool, I don’t know what is. I really loved Tree and I’m so happy that the plot for this new drama is somehow connected to it. We didn’t get to know them during Tree so I’m expecting a lot from this drama. My brain can’t wait! (Maybe my heart as well.) So excited!

  23. 23 bishbash

    Must. Watch.

  24. 24 korfan

    Wow, sounds interesting already! …… QSD was absolutely fantastic …… didn’t watch Tree, but I’ve heard good things about it also.

    This one will be one to keep an eye on in 2014.

  25. 25 chickenwing

    Imagine if they get Song Joong Ki for Lee Bang Won. “‘cos Taejong looks like his son when he was young…” then we’ll get a psychotic bloodthirsty Song Joong Ki for once

  26. 26 rheabiel

    i want KANG DONG WON to be the lead!!!

    even though he has stated that he will not gonna do any dramas, i think if they’ll have a good offer to him and if the casting will be great, KANG DONG WON might do it..right right?

  27. 27 Norkys

    Yeon Jeong Hun would be the perfect male lead… Imho. πŸ˜‰

  28. 28 Cary

    queen seon deok practically became my benchmark for sageuks. everything about it, from the politicking, the score, the queen who had to give up her love – and everything she had, and is, for that matter, for her country, just got me. didnt get the chance to watch tree yet, though

  29. 29 Oomiak

    Song Il Guk …. gotta be the male lead.

    To tell you the truth, I love all of the sageuks … even the light and fluffy ones…

    …. but the heavy-hitters: Queen Seondeok, Dae Jang Geum, Tree with Deep Roots, Jumong…. they truly grab hold of your soul… we have NOTHING IN AMERICAN TELEVISION to match them….In fact, I have not watched a single show on American television show since I discovered Korean sageuk ….

    Am soooooo looking forward to Unprecedented…. please post on this website, ANY NEWS you get about it….

  30. 30 Cam

    Whooooo!! I will definitely look forwaaaard to this! I really enjoy watching that DAEBAK drama “Queen Seon Deok” about two or three years ago! That was reaaaally impressively great! Oo, they still have plenty of time to think about any casts in this drama before it starts in 2014…..dababda!!

    Umm….What am I think about any male leading role…? Aha! I really hope that they will probably chose that actor JANG GEUN SEOK because he will improve his acting since he had few dramas was not pretty good….so I would like to see him into a BIG shine in this drama, of course! I will pray that they will pick Jang Geun Seok, hopefully so! πŸ˜‰

    • 30.1 Gloria

      Jang Geun Seok…?! That would be a good idea if they put him in this drama and it will able to improve his acting better than other dramas when he was in. I am sure that he will need to let his ‘old weird way’ image and change his image from “girly” to MANLY if he’s in this drama!! πŸ˜€

    • 30.2 bd

      Oh, PLEASE NO!!!

      JGS would completely ruin it.

  31. 31 Gloria

    Ahh!! Sorry, it’s my mistake! I meant, he will let his ‘old weird way’ image go!*

  32. 32 Lilian

    Tree with Deep Roots made me appreciate language and how it can bring down barriers and hierarchies. Quite a powerful story and made me appreciate hangul more =)

  33. 33 Newborn Fanatic

    Both those dramas were so good!! My expectations for this drama will be soaring. Can’t wait to find out who will take the leads and omg 2014 seems SO far away. πŸ˜›

  34. 34 ocanannain

    I’d love to see Joo Jin Mo as a lead in Unprecedented…. he played a super king in Frozen Flower.

  35. 35 Rovi

    “It’s a political action drama set in early Joseon, and specifically about ‘the heroes who founded the nation.'”

    Oh goody. It’s just like Kim Jae-hyeong’s “Tears of the Dragon”, then. How I missed Yoo Dong-geun’s Taejong and his husky voice. (Now he’s Yi Sun-shin XP)

    Jeong Do-jeon vs. Yi Bang-won (Taejong) – snitches from “Deep-rooted Tree”…XP But I liked “Tears of the Dragon” the best.

    Also, the First Strife of Princes (26 August 1398 lunisolar, 5 October 1398 Julian calendar), where Taejo’s heir Yi Bang-seok (Jeong Do-jeon influenced Taejo to select his heir based on whom he wanted and favored, over to whom contributed the greatest) & Yi Bang-beon; basically Taejo and his just then-deceased 2nd Queen Consort Queen Shindeok’s favorite sons, the result of which Taejo abdicated in disgust.

    Also, Taejong has reason(?) to kill Jeong Do-jeon, (this comes from “Tears of the Dragon” as well) because before Queen Shindeok died, she basically requested Jeong Do-jeon to protect her son Yi Bang-seok, and hr last request, is to kill Yi Bang-won.

    There are a few clips pertaining to the First Strife of Princes uploaded on YouTube, though they’re from “Tears of the Dragon” (the user’s “comcom000”)

  36. 36 λ©

    OMG OMG, JUST OMG YES! Now to just hope for a good cast, and a cast with as few idols as possible.

  37. 37 Boo

    I loved TWDR a lot, so I’m hyped to hear more about this new drama! *___*

    Haven’t seen QSD yet though…. Idky I thought it was like 1OO+ EPs, but I just searched it and it’s 62. Still a long one, but I might check it out.

  38. 38 Seorori

    Looking forward to it, already.
    The things that will be extremely interesting will be the cast . I wonder who will shine in this drama. πŸ˜‰

  39. 39 Seorori

    Looking forward to it already.
    The things that will be extremely interesting will be the cast . I wonder who will shine in this drama. πŸ˜‰

  40. 40 poetry_maven

    Hi Everyone,

    If you’re interested in actually owning a copy of “Tree with Deep Roots,” please go to RightStuf.com. (It’s where you can find the official U.S. release–for a good price. πŸ™‚


    Regardless, it’s great to hear from so many “Tree with Deep Roots” fans.

    P.S. Right Stuf.com is a small business, but it’s reliable like Amazon.com.

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