It’s an interesting pairing, but not one I’m averse to: TOP (Tazza 2) and Japanese actress Ueno Juri (best known in Korea for Nodame Cantabile) are teaming up for a Korean-Japanese drama to be produced by CJ E&M.
The project has no title, no scheduled timeslot, and no decided format (they’re tossing around multiple possibilities, from web drama to television), but both actors have confirmed their participation. How you get two stars of their level to commit without any of the above is beyond me, but I’m intrigued.
The plot: TOP plays Woo-hyun, who harbors pain from his first love but still wants to believe in love. Ueno Juri will play Haruka, and they’ll help each other overcome their past hurts as they grow into a new love. The description is pretty vague, but perhaps they’re still hashing out the narrative while they’re also working out the format details. I wish we had more to go on, but I can see a project like this — a simple love story traversing two cultures — working well if done in a low-key, thoughtful way, such as in the Won Bin and Fukada Kyoko drama Friends back in 2002. That drama was sweet and pleasant (if a little too placid, perhaps) and showed the two working to bridge very real-life obstacles, like language barriers and distance.
I have no idea if this as-yet-unnamed project will be like Friends or something entirely different altogether (with these names attached, I expect big budgets and high profiles, certainly), but I loved Ueno Juri in Nodame Cantabile and would love to see more of her; she strikes me as a sensitive and thoughtful actress, full of nuance in a way that reminds me of Jung Yumi, perhaps. TOP’s been steadily improving on the acting front, and goodness knows he’s got plenty of screen presence. I’m eager to see who they match up together.
Via IS Plus
Tazza 2: Hand of God hits theaters next month
TOP to romance Shin Se-kyung in Tazza 2
TOP as undercover agent and oppa extraordinaire
TOP in talks to headline Tazza 2
TOP to become flower boy secret agent?
TOP rumored for another drama
TOP and Yoon Eun-hye heat up the pages of W
Kim Haneul and TOP are top contenders for Absolute Boyfriend