We finally have a leading lady for Hyun Bin’s long-awaited army comeback project, The King’s Wrath, where he’ll be playing King Jeongjo of Joseon. Han Ji-min’s name has been circling the casting stories for a little while as a maybe, but it looks like she’s signing on to star. It turns out not to be a romantic pairing though — I just assumed she’d be taking on a queen consort role, and thought it would be a retread of her days in Yi San (where she played King Jeongjo’s concubine Sung Ui-bin opposite Lee Seo-jin). But she’s actually playing an antagonist in the film: she’ll be the queen dowager, his step-grandmother and fierce political rival.
I know what you’re thinking: she don’t look like his grandma. But Queen Jeongsun, wife of Jeongjo’s grandfather King Yeongjo, was only seven years older than her step-grandson. She wielded a lot of power in the turbulent era in which Jeongjo took the throne, and even became the regent in his death; she was known for greatly opposing his political views. It’s nice to see her changing up her image to play the antagonist, especially since she’s already played a consort to the very same king in dramaland.
Han Ji-min will actually be having a movie reunion with her Plan Man co-star Jung Jae-young in this film, where he’s playing one half of an assassin duo sent to kill the king. Jo Jung-seok plays the other assassin, and they even have rhyming names. They go undercover to act as the king’s bodyguards, only in that time Jung Jae-young becomes convinced that Jeongjo is actually a good king, putting him in a royal pickle when it comes time to kill him.
It’ll be the big screen debut for PD Lee Jae-kyu of The King 2 Hearts, Damo, and Beethoven Virus, and the focus of the story will be on the king and the two men whose jobs are both to kill and protect him.
The King’s Wrath starts shooting in September for a 2014 release.
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