SM Entertainment Buys the Rights to Produce K-drama Version of Hana Kimi

Not keen on letting JYP hog all the media attention after the success of Dream High, and not worried about the grand pratfall that befell Playful Kiss, SM Entertainment wants to take its best shot at producing a teen drama. And not just any old teen drama, it’s a literary adaptation that involves boarding school and cross-dressing.

Oh shit, what do you mean KBS did it already with Sungkyungkwan Scandal! Never fear, SM nation will likely put its own (idol) spin on its version, and has commissioned the rights to popular manga Hanazakari no Kimitachi e (Hana Kimi) and plans to bring it the a small screen near you in the foreseeable future.

I don’t know what to think. I can’t write it off before casting even begins, yet I kinda can because both the TW- and J-drama versions of Hana Kimi were just ridiculous, slapstick wack from beginning to end. How anyone can pretend Maki is a guy makes my head spin (Horikita Maki, ferrsakes, one of the prettiest most feminine faces in J-ent!). Ella fared better, but alas, Wu Zun sucked all the life out of that version.

I think everyone keeps wanting to duplicate the runaway success of Boys Before Flowers (the Korean adaptation of Hana Yori Dango), which was clearly the anomaly. Teen dramas have a niche, and that is about it. I’ll keep my eye on this, but I highly suggest SM cast actors as the two leads and use its stable of idols to fill in the large number of supporting roles. Cross-dressing roles are hard enough, and the thought of a newbie idol donning her best male impersonation makes me very leery.

[Credit: Osen news via Daum]


SM Entertainment Buys the Rights to Produce K-drama Version of Hana Kimi — 54 Comments

      • He he, just thought I’d check. I don’t know my boy bands at all, but I did follow both DH and SKKS, and I was like, “Wait, I thought the idols in each drama came from different boy bands?” Korea has way too many boy bands – the only way I manage to differentiate them at all is from following Korean dramas, which is kind of sad, because I generally have very poor expectations for idol acting.

        I loved both Hana Yori Dango and Hana Kimi the mangas, so I always felt kind of bad for HK that its Taiwanese and Japanese adaptations couldn’t achieve the same level of success that the adaptations of HYD did. The Japanese HK did have lots of eye candy, though. Even if it was so whack.

  1. wow, another adaption of a japanese anime…SM better used a great actor and actress to play the lead roles..don’t disappoint me 6_6 i don’t want no crappy ass actor and actress and please don’t use idols..sorry peoples

  2. SM?!…..i can already see half of SuJu in it….maybe not Si Won cuz he’ll be busy in Taiwan……and either one of the SNSD girls or Go Ara or Lee Yeon Hee will play the lead….good luck trying to convince anybody that they are boys…..but then again i’ve yet to come across an Asian cross dressing drama that they dint have that trouble
    I did like Hana Kimi, the Jdorama but that was only because I loved all the high School gimicks and Nakatsu was such a hoot!..but whenever they tried to go serious i’d hit the ffw btutton

    • actually on second though Heechul might make a good Nakatsu…afterall he’s got the boy-love fanservice part perfected 🙂

    • Go ara is Good cadidate for this Dram ; She can dance Though her act isn’t good (seems she always is sad)…But undeniable beauty;And young ehough 1990.

  3. I loved the manga, so I’ve got my fingers crossed so hard that this adaptation, at least, will come out watchable. I’ve only seen a couple episodes of the Taiwanese and Japanese versions, and in both, the actors playing Sano drove me batshit insane–I think Oguri Shun is exceedingly unattractive, and Wu Zun…well, the less said about that particular (but very pretty) block of wood, the better.

    • i love Shun. Okay so he’s not attractive, that’s true. But he’s a very awesome actor and i love him in Hana Kimi, although my fave role of his will always be Hanazawa Rui of Hana Yori Dango.

      I’d chose acting skills over attractive face anytime.

  4. Can we have a girl who can convince everyone she’s a guy (funny how it’s obvious to the audience – just by the appearance alone – that it’s a girl while everyone in the drama is oblivious. It’s like they live on another planet) and also NOT do the over-acting/act cute kind of thing? The TW version received rave reviews but I switched it off after half an hour – Ella just made me cringe and roll my eyes to the back of my head.

    As for Korean cross-dressers (so far I’ve seen Coffee Prince and SKK Scandal), only Park Min Young didn’t make me cringe. She didn’t over-do the “oh I’m a guy so I gotta eat/act like a pig” kind of thing.

  5. Awww, I love the Japanese version, so, I’m not exactly jumping for joy with this news, but c’est la vie. I hope they hire good actors for this adaptation, and not just idols please.

    On a totally different topic: Jung Woo Sung and Lee Ji Ah are dating???

  6. To be honest, I didn’t mind the j-version that much. I mean, it SO wasn’t the kind of drama I like and the slapstick comedy was too much (I do not like slapstick comedy), but I watched it and lalala through it. XD

    IDK how the kdrama might be. It could either be awesome or spectacularly bad. I don’t think kdrama can ruin the story too much. Then again, if I were a fan of the manga, I’d probalby hate all of the adaptations.

    As for Boys before flowers, I guess it was so popular for a number of reasons. I couldn’t get past ep 10 because if I had heard Jan-di say another word, I would have torn my hair out (and not even LMH and his performance, which I enjoyed a lot, could make me watch more), but I think the main reason BBF was so popular was because HYD had, in itself, a “kdrama” flavor, imho, and that translated well into the kdrama format.

  7. I’ve read somewhere that instead of a cross-dressing girl… it’ll be a cross-dressing guy in an all-girls school. so that’s GG + the cross-dressing male would be… Heechul? Onew? Minho? Key? LOL

    • a lot of suggestions have been made pointing towards minho as sano. obviously cos of his athleticism. no. 1 in high jump (idol stars championship), totally believable. hahah

  8. I like Hana Kimi, and the Japanese ver was so fun, even if a bit ridiculous, it’s still one of my best jdramas.

    I’m kinda sure Hana Kimi korea will just be another Playful Kiss, though.

    And Sungkyunkwan Scandal definitely does it better

  9. I don’t know if this will make sense, but the slapstick humor of Hana Kimi is very Japanese. Hana Kimi even had trouble being adapted to a Taiwanese audience (and, I agree that Wu Zun killed a lot of the potential). If you don’t know what I mean by “Japanese”, and don’t have time to read the manga, watch one episode of the Japanese Hana Kimi – it has the soft, dream-like lighting, men running around in capes, and girls doing cheers as flowers magically appear out of the air around them. Over the top and tongue in check, but it captures the essence of the manga.

    If anything was obvious from BOFs, despite the number of sources/exemplars, an adaptation can still be poorly done. Hopefully the screen writer, and the casting director, will get this one correct. Hana Kimi is a completely ridiculous, daydream of a property; but, it could be fun . . .

    • Hear! Hear! That’s one of the selling point of the drama. Slapstick comedy. The taiwanese version didn’t accomplish that well.

  10. I don’t care what they do in the korean version as long as they don’t take out Sano and Mizuki’s really hot kiss (he slams her against their door) right before the manga series ends. They took it out in the japanese and taiwanese versions. Actually the taiwan version didn’t even end really…?

  11. i loved the Japanese version. it was hilarious and I do agree that it went along well with the anime. The taiwanese one, now that was a bit odd for me. Hopefully the korean version would be a good one.

  12. I personally loved the jdrama version a lot because the acting of the leads was great, which isn’t surprising because all three (Maki, Shun, and Toma) are strong j-actors. I do agree with Maki being very feminine looking to be believable though. I think Ella was a good Mizuki since she looks the part but the overall acting of the TW version was really bad. I have very little hope for the korean version because k-ent doesn’t have a strong record of making good remakes to begin with and secondly this is being done by SMent which means idol-fest and horrendous acting. Sorry to say but overall the acting ability of SME idols is pretty bad.

    • i enjoyed jap’s hana kimi. it was 1 of the first few that sucked me into j-doramaland back then.

      what made hana kimi great (jap, not seen taiwanese version nor do i have intention to, though it was aired in my country years ago), was the supporting cast. omg! the roommates of 1,2,3 ryouban were hilarious!!

      i love that one guy who kept on sticking near to pester mizushima hiro. hahah.. so funny, hiro kept on whacking him off, cos the lovesick guy was in his way flirting up with girls.

      the cheesy leader of ryouban #3, so is the leader of ryouban #1 were absolute entertainment!!! for me, i think oguri shun was lackluster.. his face was mostly the same expression. the 2nd lead, ikuta toma was good.

      i’m not a fan of maki. she’s dull. dislike her in kurosagi, way too annoying. yamapi was daebak tho…ooooh, his body in kurosagi and his swag style. lol. some of my fav jdramas, really unfortunately, has her starring in it.. oh well.

    • on a side not, i always smirk whenever i see her name.

      in malay language, ‘maki’ means to curse, to insult. definitely not a good word. imagining telling malays with no jap knowledge that your name is ‘maki’. lol.. their faces… hahah

  13. say whattt
    hmm im finding it hard to imagine how they can adapt japanese humor into a k-drama one….but they managed with BOF right. But BOF korea despite the lavish production was weak as compared to HYD japan.
    as for it turning into PK…ratings wise of course…not really sure. Suju is pretty big.

  14. tw version…the lead girl made me cringe sooooo much. which is why i was pretty surprised that outside of hana kimi she was actually pretty and not annoying.

  15. Can I just say that animation is animation, it’s supposed to go beyond the boundaries of human capacity to magnify emotions, it’s a typhoon of hyperbole’s and fallacies so to crossover for a real person to portray it wow must be a true chameleon….hehe Glee’s Marketing approach to the mass, to sell a Drama or series is you watch the show because you want to see a pretty good looking guy or a hot singer on the show not the script not the acting that’s why there are big screen actors and prime time actors (Why do you think Britney and Gwyneth had to play a role in Glee hihihi yup inconsistent script but consumer market)….that way you convince the sponsors this is a profitable show, what we call market value….too sad we cannot speak for the mass and the sponsors can we…..sorry just had to say useless stuff….I like the actress on coffee prince she should take a shot on the lead….wow Playfull did ranked in Korea what market are we talking about here I’m confused?

    • Are you asking me? Please explain what you mean that PK “ranked” in Korea? What rankings are you talking about?

      Playful Kiss was the lowest rated drama in all of 2010, you’d have to look back to 2006 with Invasive Inquiry Agency for a drama to hit lows as abysmal as 2.5% rating. The drama climbed back to 5-6% for its final few episodes, which would be an embarassement for any drama, but by then I was just glad the ratings were not through the floor low like in the 3-4% when it premiered.

      PK may have ended up making back its money with licensing deals with Youtube for the additional 7 episodes, and with other broadcast networks outside of Korea – but PK is widely considered a drama disappointment.

      • sigh ockoala~ reading this really makes me sad again, I love Playful Kiss so much…I felt for the actors and crew here, who really worked hard despite the ratings. To go against Gumiho and Baker King, who midway in their episodes, PK really is an underdog:(

      • PK got done in by Baker King AND its execution and story not appealing to the K-drama genre where its less slice of life and more impactful plot momentum.

        It was always a niche drama, but I personally felt it deserved higher ratings than it got, at least in the low-teens.

      • Very informative thank you, I have not looked into statistics that far back…well you definitely clarified the confusion on my end….you did say it did break even though….hmmm that’s the Korean Market I guess? but then again the agency may not be able to cover some consumer information if the drama has not been locally aired in some countries and the essence of piracy exist yup agencies have it’s limitations too….sometimes Dramas can sell more in a foreign Market but like I said I have no hard facts in my hand ….don’t have time to gather data so you are very passionate in what you do I appreciate that….ciao!!!!

      • Don’t let the Song Byung-Joon-driven “PK is a worldwide hit in the making” parable misguide you.

        Youtube deal? It’s peanuts, the visibility they gained via the CNN thing is certainly publicity but of the “gee, here’s the next yellow fad we don’t really give a shit about” kind, which might increase visibility for two months but doesn’t really lead to increased business. Overseas deals? As always, Japan is responsible for 95% of those figures (rest is, again, peanuts), and they’re not really all that special (bit less than your usual sageuk or star-studded Hallyu project, bit more than the average miniseries bought blindly by the usual suspects). And as you noted, Korean ratings and ad revenue were abysmal, which is really what counts. Or maybe they want you to believe that selling shows to Dramafever and Crunchyroll will pay anything more than catering for a couple of episodes? If the menu they expect isn’t too flamboyant, that is…

        It did break even, but only because the budget was ridiculously low to begin with, and if you’re familiar with block booking, you know the second reason why it did – the stations can’t do that because 80% of the shows are produces by indies like Song’s Group Eight, but he certainly can, even if what he tags onto the show might be “prospects” of future series, as in pre-presales. Song is good with formats and marketing, but doesn’t really know half a squat about the dynamics of producing a drama (letting “Bizarro World’s own Stanley Kubrick” Hwang In-Roi produce PK should be a big hint).

        Remember…. Hallyu = niche bubble funded by Japan’s DVD rental and Cable/Satellite market. Everything else is BS created by the Korean press for nationalistic purposes, or by those who make money off of it (government included), for obvious reasons. There’s nothing cultural about it, and although K-dramas have pretty much replaced spaghetti western as the best steady-seller in the Japanese home video market, it’s hardly anything that will worry the KimuTakus of the world…

    • Ay yeah ranking and performance has a lot of factors as what you said performance can be looked at different angles as Oscars segmented their awards categories….but the best one in marketing when it comes to validating performance is word of mouth….yes the existence of competition definitely is a major factor ciao!!!!

  16. Actually Maki has acted a boy twice before her role in hanakimi, and thiose parts have been far more convincing. In Tokyo Shounen she acted a girl with split personality, the other personality is male. In a earlier short film she acts a yanki and that one was also with Shun.
    But I can see disaster coming with this adaptation, they’ll tone down the sexual matters such as Nakatsu questioning his sexuality etc.
    But at least the japanese version was hilarious and had a lot of good looking guys ^^

    • And Sano’s kissing habits when he’s drunk. LMAO! He kissed the guys longer than the girl. Still it’s soooo funny esp when Shirota Yu’s character got confused cos of the kiss.

      And I agree, Ikuta Toma killed the Nakatsu character for everyone else. He’s really good. makes you sad he didn’t get the girl.

  17. Hana Kimi was my fave Taiwan Serial at all times! hahahaha because of Ella Chen! at first I don’t like her but I don’t know what entice me of liking her! hahaha! true Chun was really bad at that time, but of course he improve in some other series, then Hana Kimi Japan was one of my fave in Japan drama, I love the goofiness of every boys there! especially the dorm 3 leader! LOL! in short I love Hana Kimi manga! I hope this Korean Version will do so, and I’m so excited if they will follow the Manga of discovering that she is a girl, I want a happy ending this time!
    who do you think they will choose as the leads?
    for me Jung So Min as the lead, and the male is still a question mark…….

  18. wa wa wa wa!!!!
    im so exited !!!!!!!!!!!!!! hell, no!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    i really bhate that drmaa in all the versions….
    and i dón´t know why! don´t ask!
    i started seeing the taiwanes version but… i got SO BORED!!!!!
    i´m not dying for seeing it!…. but well… if the lead atracts me !
    i will give it a chance! one episode chance!

  19. Hmmm….wow…everyone is getting on board with Hana Kimi. I read the manga first, and LOVED it, my favourite character being Dr. Umeda. I watched the Japanese version and thought the same thing, that alot of you have already said,….Ikuta Toma virtually stole the show….it was very entertaining with its slapstick. I discovered alot of new Jdrama actors: Ikuta Toma, Kyo Nobuo, Hiro Mizushima. Of course I had already seen Oguri Shun in “Boys Over Flowers”…..he may not be “beautiful”, but he is attractive. Looking forward to seeing him in the Jdrama “Dr. Dolittle”. Anyway, I look forward to watching the Korean version of Hana Kimi, hopefully it will follow the manga closer than the Japanese version.
    Thanks for the update Koala:)

  20. Hana Kimi! It was the first manga I ever finished. <3

    Wow, I remember having a conversation with my sister after we finished YB that Lee Hong Ki would make a perfect Nakatsu… but I didn't expect Korea would actually take interest. lol

    I HATED the TW-version because of Ella (ugh x 1000), loved the J-version because of Maki (unf) and Shirota Yu, but I didn't like the way both versions changed the storyline. Kinda apprehensive how Korea would do with it.

  21. I read this in the news yesterday and I was like.. say WHAT?? I mean both the Japanese version and Taiwanese versions were great. but now to add a Korean one?? Now I’m super curious which drama is going to follow the same bandwagon after this one unfolds..

    I’m also super curious who they are going to choose to play the lead actors and lead actress.. Are they going to choose someone who’s actually in their Teens or someone in their late 20s who looks like a Teen??

    Time will tell.. its going to probably come out early next year is my guess..

    Thanks for posting.. 🙂

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