Recent controversy doesn’t seem to have derailed KBS, accusations of plagiarism and lawsuits be damned. On August 25, producers of the 2013 movie The Face Reader filed for an injunction against KBS for their unauthorized drama remake The King’s Face, alleging that KBS met with them to make the drama, backed out of the deal, and subsequently happened to come up with their own version. In light of this, KBS has issued a statement that The King’s Face, “Is a totally different drama,” and immediately followed it up with casting announcements that Jo Yoon-hee (Scandal, Nine) is being courted to play the leading lady.
I might believe KBS… if they hadn’t been promoting The King’s Face as a remake of The Face Reader for months. Now suddenly all the press releases are describing it strictly as a story about Prince Gwanghae, which just happens to also include a face-reading fortuneteller as a major story element. They’re arguing that the movie is primarily about the face reader (played by Song Kang-ho in the film), while their drama is set in a different century, and will focus on the prince becoming king.
It’s amusingly obvious that they’re trying to find a way out of this mess after the film’s production house, Jupiter Film, came out with statements that they met with KBS Media back in 2012 to make the drama together and had suggested the writer that KBS is now working with. KBS in turn has issued the following statement: “The King’s Face is a totally different drama in people, era, and setting, with different plot and conflict structure, and mode of expression from The Face Reader.”
One wonders why they don’t just cut the face reader out of the story altogether then, if they’re going to toe this line (not that any move at this point makes them look much better). In any case, KBS is now calling it a coming-of-age story about Prince Gwanghae and his contentious relationship with his father. Seo In-gook (High School King of Savvy) is still considering the leading role as Gwanghae, and Lee Sung-jae (Suspicious Housekeeper) is up to play his father King Seonjo.
Jo Yoon-hee has been offered the role of the woman who has the love of three men — Gwanghae, his father King Seonjo, and the face reader (yunno, the one totally different from the one in the movie). Not much is said about her role, but she’ll be caught between the father and son who become rivals in politics and love. Writing is Lee Hyang-hee (War of Money), and directing is PD Yoon Sung-shik (Gaksital, Story of a Man). The thing is, before all this backstage drama I was looking forward to this show; now I don’t know what frankensteined not-a-remake-we-swears-it will be born in its place.
The King’s Face is being prepped for a November premiere.
Via IS Plus, Nocut News