Shin Dong-wook makes acting comeback with Lookout
Excellent news! Shin Dong-wook (Wish Upon a Star), who was diagnosed with a cripplingly painful illness called CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) in 2010, is finally well enough to resume his acting career, and has confirmed joining MBC’s upcoming action-crime-thriller drama Lookout. The series is an ensemble show that centers around ordinary people who have all lost a loved one through various crimes; having lost faith in the system, they come together to form a vigilante group of “Lookouts” who fight for justice and punish those whom the law has overlooked.
The drama’s cast includes Lee Shi-young (My Beautiful Bride) as a woman who seeks revenge against her daughter’s killer, who was never caught, while Kim Young-kwang (The Man Living in Our House) plays an ambitious lawyer whose painful childhood has twisted him into becoming a “monster.” Shin Dong-wook has been cast as Kim Young-kwang’s half-brother, and while the mysterious childhood incident remains vaguely described, the two men “share a pain that’s thicker than blood.” Moreover, he’s the only person who understands Kim Young-kwang’s true nature and knows his plans—and is therefore the only person who can emphathize with him and hold him back. Aw, that sounds like it’s going to be a tragic bromance that’ll twist my heart up, in a good (though painful) way.
Also cast are Kim Tae-hoon (Fantastic) as a righteous prosecutor who believes in the power of the law until he’s disillusioned by the corruption he sees around him. Kim Seul-gi (Splish Splash Love) plays an orphan burdened by survivor’s guilt after losing her whole family, and Key (Drinking Solo) plays a genius hacker.
I’m so pleased to hear that Shin Dong-wook’s health has improved enough for him to feel confident about returning to acting; for a while, I thought we might never see him act again, which would have been too sad (his 2006 drama Soulmate remains one of my all-time favorite shows). Shin had been fulfilling his mandatory two-year military service when he suffered sudden and random attacks of pain, and after he was diagnosed, he was discharged from duty. He spent the next several years out of the spotlight recovering his health, and was able to write a novel titled I Write, Space Journal, which was published last year.
His management had stated then that the nature of CRPS made it possible to carry on everyday life, but that the sudden and unexpected attacks of pain made an acting comeback uncertain. But now, his management states, “He is not 100 percent recovered from his disease, but has improved to such a degree that it will not cause problems for his everyday life or for filming.” His role, naturally, will not be heavy on the action; we can expect most of those scenes to fall to his castmates.
Directed by Two Weeks’ PD Sohn Hyung-seok, Lookout was the winner in an open script competition last year. It will follow Rebel: Thief Who Stole the People on MBC, beginning in May.
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- Shin Dong-wook publishes novel, still no comeback plans
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