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Lineup confirmed for mystery drama Jirisan by Kingdom’s writer and Goblin’s PD


Jeon Ji-hyun, Joo Ji-hoon

In a slew of casting news over the last few days for upcoming drama Jirisan, lead roles have been confirmed for actors Jeon Ji-hyun (Legend of the Blue Sea), Joo Ji-hoon (Kingdom 2), Sung Dong-il (Somehow Family), and Oh Jung-se (It’s Okay to Not Be Okay).

Set in the titular Jiri Mountain, the drama is centered around the park rangers who work in Jirisan National Park and involves a mystery surrounding the mountain’s many visitors.

Jeon Ji-hyun plays one of the park’s top rangers, Seo Yi-kang. In many ways, she has become one with nature and navigating through the mountainside is almost instinctive. Her experience has also made her very knowledgeable and even a single leaf is enough of a clue to help track down a lost hiker.

Joo Ji-hoon plays a new ranger named Kang Hyun-jo, who becomes partnered with Jeon Ji-hyun when he joins the Jirisan team. He used to work in the army and rose to the rank of captain, but he carries a secret from his past.

Sung Dong-il’s character is Jo Dae-jin. He is the head of the branch office at Jirisan National Park and spent most of his life working as park ranger. He has a strong sense of duty for his job and responsibility for his staff, and is honest to a fault.

Oh Jung-se takes on the role of ranger Jung Gu-young. Being extremely realistic, he lives by the motto, “I have to take care of myself in order to take care of others.” As such, he clocks in and out of work sharply on time, makes sure to take all of his vacation days, and disappears as soon as someone says “You’re dismissed.”

Supporting cast for the drama includes team leader Jo Han-chul (Old School Intern), police officer Jeon Suk-ho (365: Defying the Year), park volunteer Lee Ga-seop (Forest of Secrets 2), and rookie ranger Go Min-shi (Secret Boutique) among others. And a notable mention for my favorite veteran actor Kim Young-ok (The King: Eternal Monarch), who plays Jeon Ji-hyun’s grandmother and restaurant owner in the Jirisan village.

There’s been a lot of fanfare for the drama’s production team as well, which will be headed by writer Kim Eun-hee (Kingdom, Signal) and PD Lee Eung-bok (Mister Sunshine, The Lonely Shining Goblin).

A network has not yet been confirmed, but the drama is being planned to air sometime next year and filming is set to commence in mid-September. The production team has also reported that they are prioritizing the health and safety of both cast and crew, and will be taking measures to practice caution and protect against the current pandemic circumstances with COVID-19.


Sung Dong-il, Oh Jung-se


Top row, L-R, Jo Han-chul, Jeon Suk-ho, Lee Ga-seop
Bottom row, L-R, Go Min-shi, Joo Mi-kyung, Kim Young-ok

Via Newsen, Sports Chosun, Yonhap News

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Yes to all of this, but especially to the PD, who really elevated Goblin. So many great names in this.

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Elevated Goblin & everything else he did. I liked his directing but could never quite fully get behind his choice of scripts. Mr. Sunshine was also gorgeously directed, but I didn't finish it.
This time i'm actually interested in the drama as a whole package!

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I loved Mr. Sunshine too. You know, he has the MOST GORGEOUS set direction. He frames everything like it could be a portrait; everything in the frame is exactly perfect, nothing is out of place, symmetrical. He's an artist.

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Gosh the symmetry yesss! It is so freaking satisfying to watch the images he creates!

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MR. SUNSHINE is a true classic, and received a lot of critical acclaim. We should be encouraged.

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Reading The Korean national park service have signed an agrement with the production company. So they gonna help finding film location and giving advice to details of the script. So hope this would mean that it is gonna be good story just as much as the visual. :)

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I can never get behind Jun Ji-hyun's drama pairings. I loved You From Another Star and enjoyed Legend of the Blue Sea, but because Jun Ji-hyun's screen presence is so larger than life, she overpowered Kim Soo-hyun and Lee Min-ho that there was a lack of romantic chemistry.

My favorite Jun Ji-hyun's pairings are from her movies: Cha Tae-hyun, My Sassy Girl (THE OG) and Ha Jung-woo, Assassination (fire).

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Agree about LMH, but I thought Kim Soohyun held up pretty well!

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I enjoyed Love from Another Star but couldn't finish Legend of the Blue Sea. Oddly, I enjoyed Lee Minho in that than JJH. I mean her acting is similar to MLFAS but here I found it little over the top. I loved their sageuk parts though.

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Totally agree with you about her presence stealing everything in the drama!!

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I actually think this could be a great pairing; Joo Ji-hoon is also a really strong actor (even veering into scenery-chewing levels sometimes) so this will be more like a clash of titans.

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Joo Ji Hoon is an excellent actor, I'm sure he will be able to hold his own. I'm excited to watch the JJH's together in a drama.

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She mostly pick dramas with characters that focus on her and the male lead is kind of a supporting character.

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out of dramas he did so far...joo jihoon fits her the best!! he's such excellent actor and this is mystery drama he gonna nail it for sure

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Oh Jung-se is on a roll! One winning drama after another, one quirky character after another.

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his emotional range is INSANE. can't get over how talented this man is!!

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Will check it out for Oh Jung-se.

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his character description is so life, I know EXACTLY this type of people, me & my co-workers often bang our heads against the wall because of them. im not sure if I can handle that, will probably throw shoes at the screen and curse or something.

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!!!!!
Yesss to everyone! Special shout-out to Oh Jung-se. I was already over the moon with the Jeon Jihyun & Ju Jihoon confirmation.

Omg I'm kind of getting excited about this!

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What a best-well fitable star-studded cast and a biggest characters it was. Also, I love this plot which is totally epic.

I hope it will be shown on cable next year. If it will pass/approve this system, then it would be not only one of the strongest K-dramas of 2021 but the Korean cable TV history.

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I must be suffering PTSD of a sort. Whenever I see “park rangers”, scenes from Forest pop up in my mind.

Given the people involved, one hopes for MUCH better!

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Oh. My. God.

ME, TOO!!!!!

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And the "PARK rangers"... Forest "Fireball Hands" Oppa was a Park, too. *shivers*

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Me too. As soon as I read Park ranger, I got flashes of Forest. I hope this drama will act as therapy of sorts and It would cure my fear of word Park ranger/Forest.

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Thank god I avoided everything about that show

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Me too! I did see a couple of clips but had a strong intuition to avoid it. :-D

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What a great cast! I’ll be looking forward to this one. Jun Jihyun always picks projects that I enjoy even if they’re not 100% perfect. Maybe it’s because she’s just so good? I’m sure she’ll be wonderful in this one too. Excited!

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HMMMM OK IM IN

side note when she shows up at the end of kingdom i was happy to see how she's aged and like...not fighting that (a lot of it was makeup but you could clearly tell.) i'm in. h8 goblin but <3 kingdom and i love DEATH MYSTERY AND DRAMA*!!!!

*which always revolves around some sort of authority sorry mom

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Very excited for this. I love lee eun bok pd’s works. In love with jun ji hyun and always liked joo ji hoon. Please be good!

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this cast is absolutely EPIC. i really, really hope this drama is good!!

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Really excited about this cast but I have to say, it’s hard to picture the ultra-cosmopolitan JJHes as park rangers, tromping around the woods.

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I burst out laughing when I saw the "being one with nature bit". All I could think of was her role as the top star Chun Song yi in My Love from Another Star. How would Song Yi react to all that nature? Plus that pose in the picture above is so Song Yi!
But great actors have to suffer in nature for their art.
Anyway that is an impressive role call of director, writer, and actors so it probably won't be Forest 2.0 right?
I hope its hilarious.

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Me too, picturing Song Yi being horrified that a worm has crawled on her arm. And Joo Ji Hoon being the fussiest, best-dressed ranger in the history of the Park Service.

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Getting a FOREST rash from all those forest and leaf references. And when I came to "one with nature" and "secret from his past", I started hyperventilating. Damn you, Forest. What have you done to me?

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Jeon Ji huyn is back! Hopefully it Is better than her last project.
It’s a great project to promote SK’s natural beauty and outdoor brands :))
A drama showing connection between nature and human being. I am in!

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“I have to take care of myself in order to take care of others.” As such, he clocks in and out of work sharply on time, makes sure to take all of his vacation days, and disappears as soon as someone says “You’re dismissed.”

Oh Jung-se's character sounds like an absolute mood. I'm in!

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I've been following this since it was just a rumor.
I absolutely love Joo Ji-hoon!
Finally it's confirmed and it brought Oh Jung-se and Joo Ji-hoon's sidekick, Jeon Suk-ho on board. Yay!
I don't care so much about the PD and Jeon Ji-hyn, to be honest but I love the writer Kim Eun-hee!
Her dramas are always great.
Fantastic plot (plot twists) that has full of suspense, mystery and action, and almost no romance.
But will it be on tvN or where?
It looks like still TBA.
I have a feeling it will be coming to Netflix.

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The cast gets more interesting by the day! Already looking forward to seeing how it'll all come together!

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I am excited for this drama like you won't believe. I love both Joo Jihoon and Jeon Ji-hyun. I also like the writer, Kim Eun-hee's previous works. Plus appreciate PD Lee Eun-bok's Goblin. It was visually stunning. So I have high hopes for this drama!

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Ughhh same!! Looove both JJHs but I'm was more excited with the writer and PD. And now that the whole cast has been announced.. wow look at that line-up there's so much to be excited for!

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LOL Ju Ji Hoon and Jeon Suk ho duo is inseparable! From Kingdom 1&2, Hyena and now Jirisan. They don't even come from the same agency, yet.. 😂

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I was thinking the same thing

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Thought process playing out in my mind:

1. Joppa! Yay!

2.@trinpie!

3. FOREST. *Gulps*

4. JJH's character: "he carries a secret from his past."
ME: Of course he does.

5. Sung Dong-il’s character: "...honest to a fault."
ME: So he's rude?

6. Oh Jung-se's character: "...clocks...out of work sharply on time, makes sure to take all of his vacation days, and disappears as soon as someone says “You’re dismissed."

ME: OMG. That's ME!

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Your #4, same here. “Of course he does.” 🤣

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Joppa!!! 😍

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They should have titled it Joppasan. Sounds way hotter.

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My girl is back!!!!

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I love her so much. I love him so much. I have hopes for the writer and PD duo.

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Personally, I'm not a big of Jeon Ji-hyun. I hated My Sassy Girl movie. I liked her in My Love From the Star but she didn't bring anything new to her character in The Legend of the Blue Sea.

But I love the writer and the PD, Joo Ji-hoon and the young actress Go Min-shi and I love stories that takes place in the countryside.

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Joo Ji Hoon is like fine wine. He gets better with age. 😍

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the whole crew looks promising. and most are some personal favorites. looking forward to this. 😁

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Jeon Ji-hyun is back. I still think of her as The Most Beautiful Mermaid Of All Time- and it is still the case the LEGEND OF THE BLUE SEA remains the only K-drama that my wife has watched twice.

I was afraid that she had retired to spend time with her kids but it looks like she is still willing to work and I am glad of it. I am also glad that she seems to have been very careful in choosing this project- a good writer and a great director.

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What? No chaebol? No geeeniuuuus? No killers? No time travel? 😁

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the writer and director caught my attention at first but wow this line up..full of talents..i can't wait for this!

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Lol, and when is writer-nim going to do Kingdom 3 and Signal 2? Having said that, I am glad that kdramas are increasingly being pre-produced!

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Wow .. what a line up!!
The writer and PD are so promising and look at those amazing artists in there. Very very looking forward for this.

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I am excited to see Oh Jung-Se. It's Ok to Not Be Okay was my introduction and I need too see more of his projects.

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Kim eunhee is known for her suspense and fast-paced plots so I hope the PD doesn't do anything weird with the script and make it draggy or basically 1 and half hour shots of characters (in different angles) meandering, staring at each other with mouths agape and running around in circles like what he did with goblin and Mr sunshine..

The actor line up is pretty solid too. I'm already looking forward.

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Kim Eunhee is one of the drama writer that I admire the most. She has been the most consistent of all the writers. Form her earlier masterpieces like Harvest Villa, Sign, and Ghost, then later Signal and the Kingdom series, and she worked with her husband director/screenwriter Jang Hngjoon, as well as the very successful director of Sky Castle. Her dramas are well written, with smart dialogues, with wit and surprises all along. I was particularly impressed back then in the early 2010s with her first 3 major dramas as I mentioned above.

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