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Shin Ha-kyun to star in young-again fantasy drama Mr. Baek

Huh, this is an interesting casting direction. The young-again grandpa body-swap comedy Mr. Baek has now found a home at MBC, and the series must’ve gone through some significant changes since we first heard about it. Namely, the hero casting trajectory went: Ji Chang-wook, Kim Nam-gil (who turned the project down early on in favor of a movie), then Shin Ha-kyun (All About My Romance, Brain), who has now signed on to headline. They’re all good leading men, but man are all three very different. Go figure that the rapidly de-aging grandpa drama is rapidly aging its lead actor.

The fantasy rom-com has a great premise — it’s basically the male Miss Granny, in which a fluke accident turns a 70-something grandpa back to his 30-something prime. He gets his own body, so it’s not a swap in the strictest sense, though I’m sure at 70 he’ll find his 30-something (hot) body quite foreign.

The lead character is a cold Scrooge-type who did nothing but work his entire life. To show for it, he has a chaebol group that he built from the ground up, and is considered one of the country’s top CEOs, respected by people the world over. He knows only three things — money, status, and glory — and has never even once experienced true love. Through some sort of cosmic flub, he wakes up suddenly young again. And by entering his own company at the bottom of the social ladder and experiencing youth a second time, he learns valuable lessons like appreciating what time he has left, and even falls in love in the process.

Directing is PD Lee Sang-yub of King’s Daughter Soo Baek-hyang, and writing is Choi Yoon-jung of Emergency Couple. Those aren’t credits that instill a lot of faith in me, and it makes me wonder when casting goes through such different actors for the same part, as if they’re not sure what their main character is supposed to be. But I am really intrigued by the premise, and now that Shin Ha-kyun has signed on, I think he’ll be hilarious as a young cranky gramps.

Mr. Baek follows My Spring Days on Wednesdays and Thursdays in November.

Via Hankooki

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This is great news for me! Shin Ha Kyun is my favorite and I'm happy to see him coming back to dramas. And I think he's perfect this. He's young but seems like an old soul, I think they went in the right direction. I loved him in his last rom-com as well; that show was so sweet and feel-good.

I enjoyed Emergency Couple, too–I think they make some great characters. I'll definitely give it a watch.

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I enjoyed ER too, more or less and ... esp Shin Ha-Kyun's acting. Role sounds tailor made for him.

He's almost looking LBH in that above picture - hair, pose.

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Happy with the casting news. I will watch this drama for Shin Ha Kyun. I hope he has a good script. The premise sounds promising.

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I actually read somewhere last month that Yeon Woo Jin was considering (?) to be playing the lead. I was excited because I thought he'd be perfect for this whole since he's so expressive and coming hot off of MND, he'd sign on. Guess not.

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I will be watching. I adored AAMR.

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Shin Ha Kyun is one of my holy biais, not sure about how i should feel about his casting, they all dropped the drama. SHK is better than that, i want to be positive and think that they have made some good modifications... But still... Ah, Ha-Kyun-Oppa, don't deceive me!!!!

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Dang, that's a hot picture of him. *____*

The story sounds like it could be a good one.

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I thought Emergency Couple started promisingly and then turned into a hot (and annoying) mess, so hearing that this is a project from the same writer makes warning bells ring for me.

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That's a HOT pic of him, so I can see him in this part. He can really act in dramas and in comedies so I look forward to see him go old grumpy pants CEO.

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Its like Miss Granny which I just saw that was utterly hilarious I loved it ..... So I'm on board with this. ?

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Love him so much - nobody better in the intense roles.

He had a film recently where an old man would take HIS body. Comedy, it was not. The Devil's Game, maybe?

I can't wait to see this. I loved Brain and AAMR.

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First thing that went into my mind was also devil's game

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I watched that, too. )); The worst (as in the situation--the movie was good!)

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OMG...Yes! If any actor can pull this off, he will.

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Kim Nam Gil was considered for this role?! I love him, but thank God he turned it down, cause he was totally wrong for this drama. This guy, however, sort of looks like he will pull it off.

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Shin Ha-Kyun - I will definitely watch to see if it's good. I really liked him in Brain and AAMR too. I definitely think he can pull off grumpy gramps like nobody's business. Does he have to go back to his original self in the end?

The writer doesn't inspire any confidence in me but maybe it works out this time in favor of the audience. :) Fighting!!! Wonder who else is going to get cast?

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Shin Ha-kyun with abs!! :-)

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And abs or not, I LOB this guy. He was brilliant in Brain, adorably naive in Harvest Villa, and sweetly sexy in AAMR. And I can't say enough about that movie called "Saving the green planet". He made it look so easy.
Will absolutely definitely check this out if not just for Shin Ha-kyun.

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Yay! Sounds like a great premise and SHK is a great actor. I'm down for this casting.

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Meant to add that since this is a comedy, he seems the best pick. He has comedic timing and could really portray the role well. But ummm... were they seriously considering Ji Chang Wook and Kim Nam Gil? Honestly, these two are more suited for melo than comedy. I just don't see them being comfortable in the role...

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Kim Nam Gil is really funny! He's such a jokester, it's a wonder why he hasn't done a rom-com yet. He probably just likes to tackle the melo stuff, but he should definitely give something with low risk of character death a go.

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Really? That would be good. Now that i think about it, I liked his character in Queen Seon Deok. Really dynamic. Then there was Shark...

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Hmmm... let me fangirl a bit here. You expect anything less out of me? :P

Me thinks that someone didn't watch Ji Chang Wook in "Hero," "Bachelor's Vegetable Store" or "Empress Ki," where he showed impeccable comedic timing throughout these dramas when called upon to do so. We're all still waiting for that day when he takes on an actual rom-com, instead of giving us these small splashes of mirth and brilliance from his previous projects.

That being said, a big ol' WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT?!? escaped my lips when I heard the casting news. I guess if anyone is going to bring this show some viewers, it's gonna be the Daesang Winner Shin Ha Kyun. I will give it a fighting chance... but will also start stockpiling the popcorn just in case. :D

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Enh... Actually I did watch Bachelor's vegetable garden. Cool premise before the angst. But in comparison, his comedic timing just doesn't compare with SHK.
But to each his own. I haven't seen Empress Ki so I'll defer to you on that. No offense intended.

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Casting is great now, but writing...I'm more than a little wary. We'll see. It also depends on how much will be focused on the romance to I can see it being fine if its more focused on his growth rather than love. EC didn't cut it for me--in any department really but I can see giving it a chance since this won't be a couple reunion drama. Hope the female lead is well cast.

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I can see Song Ji Hyo as the female lead... she and Shin Ha Kyun would look sweet together.

But if the body switch is truly temporary, surely this drama will be a weep fest by the end? Don't know if I can take it TBH.

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Brain makes me falls in love with Shin Ha Kyun or is it Shin Ha Kyun that makes me falls in love with Brain. Anyway, I just couldn't see any other actor playing that role besides him.

And I love the idea of male version of Miss. Granny. Particularly because its Shin Ha Kyun and its fantasy which my book makes it okay to hope for a happy ending. A real one. Not the kind we have in Ms. Granny.

On the down side, although loving the King's Daughter Soo Baek Hyang I have to say a few things about it. I'm still not quite sure whether it's right to put all the blame for things that annoys me in the King's Daughter entirely on the writer's head. Some of those blame must go the the director's as well.

So, I'm hoping that this time around he will put a tight lease on his drama. BTW who is the leading lady?

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The leading lady is not confirmed. The initial name was Shin Min Ah but with so many changes of the male lead, who knows?

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Oh, I read that Shin Mina declined this role. No news yet about the female lead.

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that's one hot shot of Shin Ha Kyun. so dishy. he was cute In All About My Romance and irritable, moody nerd whom you want to hug in Brain. Will watch out for Mr Baek. Thanks javabeans.

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I like the premise, but I am not a fan of SHK's acting. I don't know the right words to describe his acting - over indulgent? excessive? He just acts too much, just watching him for 5 minutes makes me feel nauseated.

I tried watching some of his dramas, but wasn't able to finish any of it.

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i am just glad they manage to cnfirm someone sincr like they only hv ine month to broadcast and at least they get someone who can act becos the role is demanding. who knws,maybe it may just become the sleeper hit of the year. oh btw, hv they cnfirm the female lead? good luck.

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