Fanmade City Hunter posters are lookin’ good
Lee Min-ho’s drama City Hunter is still months away from premiering, but already fans are abuzz with anticipation and have taken to their Photoshop with fervor, creating some nifty-looking mock posters.
Frankly they’re pretty damn good, much like the fanmade posters for Mary Stayed Out All Night, which I thought were even better than the official set. It’s amazing how much you can do with a few photos, a keen eye, and some creativity.
In the drama, Lee plays the main character Kang Jin, who is modeled after Saeba Ryo of the original manga and anime series. In the Japanese versions, Ryo is a private eye running an underground operation with a female partner, Kaori, and works to rid Tokyo of crime. She keeps her feelings for him under wraps, while he has a decided partiality for pretty females and is an outrageous flirt.
Sound familiar? That’s because a very similar character and setup exists in the currently running series Runaway Plan B, which drew a lot of notice because Rain’s Ji-woo character is essentially a version of the lecherous Ryo. And while some character types are familiar enough to be archetypes — the bad boy, the Duckie, the Darcy — the pervy P.I. isn’t one of those; it’s pretty distinctive and unusual. Plus, the two projects also share the same private-detective-runs-secret-firm premise.
I think Lee Min-ho has the acting chops and charisma to put his mark on his version, but unfortunately I do think Runaway stole his thunder a bit. Now, no matter what he does, he’ll have to weather comparisons not only to the original character but to Rain’s. Even if he does a fabulous job, I can see him being accused of merely copying Rain.
(This isn’t meant to spark a fan-war, by the way; I think Rain’s doing a great job in Runaway, which I’m still enjoying.)
The Runaway similarity was enough to (reportedly) send City Hunter producers scrambling into meetings to discuss whether this would be an issue, and if so, how to deal with it. What City Hunter will have to do, I think, is emphasize their differences, and aim in a different tonal direction.
For instance, if they were initially planning to go for a humorous vibe, now’s the chance to draw out some of the darker elements of the source material to distance themselves from Runaway. The original dealt with the Tokyo underground, so this is an opportunity to explore Seoul, instead of heading overseas for foreign shoots.
Lee Min-ho’s female co-star, the Kaori character, has yet to be cast and remains a topic of fan speculation. She’s described as “more attractive than pretty,” which is a way of saying that the role will be in need of a strong, charismatic actress. (That doesn’t mean she won’t be gorgeous — with the entertainment industry’s fixation on physical beauty, I’d bet she will be — but that she’ll need to be kickass as well. Gah, I know Ha Ji-won’s a long shot, and probably too old for Lee Min-ho, but a girl can dream…)
City Hunter plans to begin shooting in December, and is aiming for a broadcast in the first half of 2011.
Via E Daily