Lee Bo-young offered lead in SBS’s Advance
Aha, finally we have movement on Advance, the new drama from the writer of Punch and The Chaser, Park Kyung-soo, which was initially planned for an August launch but got pushed back (its planned timeslot going to Scarlet Heart: Goryeo instead). It’s now courting Lee Bo-young (God’s Gift — 14 Days) to star, which would be fantastic because she’s awesome and has taking a break while having a baby with husband Ji Sung. I mean, newlywed bliss is great and all, but what about ME and my dramas?
Advance (as in the verb to advance upon) has been reported to be a medical drama, but details are sparse at the moment. Even without added information, though, the project has some preliminary buzz, due almost entirely to the participation of writer Park — he has established an impressive track record for creating suspenseful thrillers that expose the seamy underbellies of those in positions of power (prosecutors, chaebols, politicians), often injecting a sharp dose of social commentary in the process.
Lee Bo-young hasn’t committed to the project, not having received a script yet, though she is said to be positively considering. And with this writer, we can expect well-written and complex characters, which would give her something to sink her teeth into. I do love her being badass and intense (though comic and brassy ain’t too bad either), and would definitely put this on my watch list if she attaches herself to it.
Early reports stated that Lee Byung-heon (IRIS, Inside Men, Memories of the Sword) was considering this project, but that was shot down pretty quickly. Lee stated that his movie schedule renders him unable to take the drama, though he did express his respect for writer Park’s work. That’s probably a good call, since I’m not sure Korean audiences (or international, for that matter) are ready to see him back on their screens after his messy blackmail-and-adultery scandal. While he was the victim of the blackmail part of that scandal, he was the perpetrator on the adultery front, and his image took a significant hit. He’s been able to keep working in films, but it’s more important in television to have a clean, likable, bankable image, and his is still rather tarnished.
Advance will be an SBS drama and plans to be half pre-produced. It’ll begin shooting in July and is aiming for a January 2017 premiere.
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