Jealousy, Rebel’s Kim Jung-hyun up for School 2017
Ah, I love this kid. Okay, so he’s not actually a kid—he’s 27 years old, apparently—but he’s such a newbie in dramaland that I just see him as Gong Hyo-jin’s adorable kid brother in Jealousy Incarnate. Rookie actor Kim Jung-hyun (Rebel: Thief Who Stole the People) is the latest to receive a casting offer for KBS’s high school drama School 2017, alongside Kim Yoo-jung (Moonlight Drawn By Clouds), who’s up for the starring role; they’re both considering favorably for now.
The newest installment of the School franchise promises to return to the core premise of the series when it first launched back in 1999—to tell real stories about the everyday struggles that contemporary teenagers face. PD Park Jin-seok of mini-drama Naked Fireman and writer of Im Soo-mi of Let’s Eat, Let’s Eat 2, Rude Miss Young-ae, and more will be at the helm. As of yet there are no details about specific storylines or characters, but School is famous for launching careers and highlighting young talent through an ensemble cast, so the hope is that School 2017 will continue that tradition.
Now that I know his age, Kim Jung-hyun seems a little old for a high school drama, but I still think of him as fresh-faced because he only debuted in 2015 (in the indie movie Overman), and I first saw him last year in Jealousy Incarnate, where he played a prickly high school student who was overprotective of his noona. I loved that character and his hilarious hatred towards Jo Jung-seok so, so much. Then he followed up that role with another great character in Rebel: Thief Who Stole the People, and kind of ran off with his own little hero-redemption arc, becoming pivotal to the story and its ending.
I’m not sure if he’s just had good luck with two memorable minor characters at the start of his career, but he’s certainly made the most of his screen time; I’ve been impressed by his acting and it’d be great to see him take on more high-profile roles. I suppose he could play a teacher as easily as he could play a student, but I’d put my money on a brooding rebel in the back row.
School 2017 plans to air in July on KBS.