I’m so gun shy about writing that the female lead for the upcoming Korean remake of Nodame Cantabile has been cast. First off the drama title is now Cantabile Romance since the leading lady’s name will clearly not be Noda Megumi (shortened to the Nodame of the title). Cute if uninspired title but this drama has so many unknowns that the title will be the least of my quibbles. First came the news that Joo Won was cast as the lead to walk in Tamaki Hiroshi‘s big footsteps. Then came word that KBS was courting acclaimed young actress Shim Eun Kyung for the leading lady since she had oodles of talent to lend confidence she can do the role justice like Ueno Juri did in the Japanese adaptation. Unfortunately Shim Eun Kyung initially declined claiming scheduling conflict with her upcoming movie filming, and that’s when the casting crazy started. News of Yoona‘s casting caused the drama fans to go ape shit in terms of acting ability and image not suiting the character, and in the end she declined to film a C-movie and my gut tells me she ultimately did not want to subject herself to the torrents of criticism sure to come her way. That led KBS back to begging Shim Eun Kyung to take the role, and when I say begging that’s probably an understatement. Finally the wait has paid off and Shim Eun Kyung has just been officially confirmed as the leading lady. Joo Won has let out a massive sigh of relief now. I’m definitely watching Cantabile Romance for Shim Eun Kyung’s first drama in 4 years since Bad Guy, and maybe this will cure my Joo Won allergy.
I can only imagine Shim Eun Kyung probably got the equivalent of the queenly treatment in being wooed for this role and I don’t blame KBS for doing everything possible to land her. She really is THE BEST young K-actress for the very difficult role, requiring massive amounts of endearing eccentricity as well as piano immersion the way Yoo Ah In did for Secret Love Affair. Cantabile Romance premieres in October on the Mon-Tues timeslot after Discovery of Love with Eric and Jung Yumi.