Lee Young-ae eyes comeback with sageuk drama (not Dae Jang Geum 2)
Lee Young-ae may finally be making her comeback to dramaland—and to acting in general—and as this news has no relation whatsoever to MBC’s ill-fated Dae Jang Geum 2 project, I’m actually inclined to believe it might happen.
Reports are out that Lee Young-ae is in talks to star in a new drama titled Shin Saimdang, which would be a biographical show chronicling the life and career of the famed Joseon-era artist and calligrapher who lived in the early 16th century and was known by the nickname Wise Mother. It’s confirmed that she was sent the synopsis and script by the writer three months back (perhaps accounting for her withdrawal from the Dae Jang Geum 2 proceedings—although truth be told, she didn’t need an excuse to walk away from that one), and is currently talking it over with the director and producers. Although, as with so many of these casting stories, nothing is yet decided.
The drama would mark Lee Young-ae’s first acting project in nine years (and first drama in over a decade), as her last role was in the 2005 Park Chan-wook film Sympathy for Lady Vengeance. She has since married and become mother to a set of twins, and has lived quietly with her family. But she has stated that she considers her acting career important as well, and is thankful for those awaiting her return to that role.
Shin Saimdang has yet to secure a timeslot or a broadcaster, so there’s a bit of a chicken-egg issue at play; Lee Young-ae’s involvement would most certainly fast-track a project to gaining both of those things, but it’s also understandable that Lee would hesitate to commit her comeback to a project that has neither. But it sounds like a meaty role that’s right up her alley, and who better to play a gracious, intelligent, and respected historical figure than her? True, the role does seem a little pat for her, but obvious castings needn’t always be bad things.
The drama is aiming to broadcast early next year, though that is, of course, contingent upon the broadcaster’s schedule.
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