Lee Se-young courted to be Yeo Jin-gu’s queen in Gwanghae remake
This is an unexpected pairing, but a happy one. Lee Se-young (Hwayugi, The Best Hit) has been offered the leading role opposite Yeo Jin-gu (Reunited Worlds) in tvN’s new drama remake of Gwanghae, The Man Who Became King, which will now be titled The Queen’s Man. Hm, that’s a bit vague when you could use the title that automatically associates your drama with a 12-million-ticket box office hit, but what do I know. Lee Se-young might not have quite the sageuk range on her filmography that Yeo Jin-gu has, but she’s a former child actress with works like Dae Jang Geum and The King’s Dream under her belt, so she’s no stranger to historical dramas. I love her deadpan delivery and her ability to go from warm and bubbly to badass in a heartbeat, so I’m excited to see her broaden her scope with a project like this.
The drama tells the story of a poor traveling clown who happens to be a perfect doppelganger for King Gwanghae of Joseon, and is secretly hired to take the king’s place on the throne when an assassination attempt greatly weakens the king. Gwanghae is cold and paranoid while the clown is warm and humane, and the drama is about the clown slowly changing the palace, the king’s influence on the people, and of course his relationship with his queen.
If she signs on, Lee Se-young will play the role of Queen Yu, who was selected to be Gwanghaegun’s consort when they were young (she was one year younger than the prince). When he became crown prince, she became crown princess alongside him at the age of sixteen, and spent the next sixteen years of her life as crown princess, and then became the queen at age thirty-two. This is the role that Han Hyo-joo played in the film version, as a woman who becomes increasingly attracted to the clown masquerading as the king. I’m looking forward to this youthful take on the same story, especially if they can get this cast to confirm.
The Queen’s Man will air in tvN’s Monday-Tuesday slot following 100 Days My Prince and Gyeryong Fairy Tale, which puts the premiere sometime in December or January.