Oh my lord does the situation on the set of SBS Wed-Thurs ratings leading drama Return appear to be a veritable shit show, pardon my language. The drama hit 15% ratings already and is the first sign of a prime time K-drama doing well to start of 2018. SBS actually aired compilations of the first few episodes during this week’s Mon-Tues slot to drum up more interest. Then came a cascade of news today that filming has halted on the set due to a disagreement between leading actress Go Hyun Jung and PD Joo Dong Min.
It’s such a huge blowup that she left the set and refused to film for the last two days. There will be a new episode of Return this Wed but Thurs will not air its episode, with SBS saying that it was already scheduled to air an Olympic special on Thursday night and the preemption was not due to the filming walkout by Go Hyun Jung. After the news first broke came further details, including that the fight was so heated that Go Hyun Jung was alleged to have physically hit PD Joo, and now SBS is saying that there is no way to repair the working relationship between them and it will have to change the leading lady. Holy mother of %^&#$@, what the heck went down?
Go Hyun Jung’s agency released a statement confirming that a disagreement went down and that it has accepted SBS’s notice to change the leading actress, with Go Hyun Jung leaving the drama effectively immediately. Perhaps the timing works in SBS’s favor with South Korea to be dominated by Winter Olympics coverage the next two weeks as the host nation. I expect the fasted Return will return (pun intended) is after the Olympics ends and maybe even an extra week out from there depending on how quickly a new leading lady is found and filming can resume. I don’t know if the drama is planning on killing Go Hyun Jung off or just slotting in a new actress in the same role like in You Are Too Much.