′Hyun Bin-mania′ Sweeping Across Stations
′Hyun Bin-mania′ is picking up steam across broadcasting stations in preparation for his upcoming release from his mandatory military service. Hyun Bin enlisted in the Marine Corps in March 2011 and will complete his military service by December 6, 2012.
Accounting for his remaining military leave, Hyun Bin should be able to consider drama projects by the end of November and look forward to making his comeback early next year.
In preparation for his return, drama production officials are working hard to get in touch with Hyun Bin′s agency.
One drama official said, "Even projects that were scheduled for earlier this year have thought about changing production dates to the spring of next year after hearing news of Hyun Bin′s return. That′s the kind of interest Hyun Bin is garnering from the networks. A production starring Hyun Bin would not only be popular in Korea, but in all of Asia as well. The genre won’t matter due to his immense popularity, and different projects are vying for his services."
Recently, several popular ‘Korean Wave’ stars have finished or will finish their military service. Earlier this year, Lee Joon Gi completed his military service and returned to the silver screen, with Lee Dong Gun returning in March, followed by Kim Nam Il in July and Kang Dong Won in November.
Furthermore, many dramas experienced casting hardships due to a shortage of male actors in the past year; however, that issue should be remedied by the end of the year with the return of some big name actors such as Hyun Bin.
Another drama official said through a spokesperson, "Jang Dong Gun, who shares the same agency with Hyun Bin, will make his silver screen comeback with A Gentleman′s Dignity. The drama will be produced by Shin Woo Cheol and written by Kim Eun Sook, the same two who worked with Hyun Bin in Secret Garden. As such, Hyun Bin met with Jang to offer some advice during his military leave. Once he is done with his mandatory service in the Marine Corps, Hyun Bin should be better able to portray a more diverse cast of characters."
Photo credit: Kim Byung Kwan
This article has been edited on February 20, 2012, to reflect a mistake in reporting that Kang Dong Won would be leaving the army in July, not November.