Park Bo Young Cast in K-drama Remake of 1 Litre of Tears to Air on MBC

There are dramas that you watch that linger briefly and then pass into oblivion. Very few make such an impact that it transcends the entertainment value and becomes something symbolic in ways that validate its purpose. 2005’s J-dorama 1 Litre of Tears (Ichi Rittoru no Namida) is one of those dramas that seeps into your bones and never really goes away, the feelings of hope and sadness it evokes so profoundly moving. Starring Sawajiri Erika in her star-making performance as Aya, a high school girl suffering from spinocerebellar degeneration, this dorama launched her into her generation’s A-list and she would have stayed there had her real life bitchy attitude and rude behavior not shot herself in the foot a few years later. Erika was absolutely luminous and raw in her performance as Aya, and she actually cornered the dorama market on “girl dying from incurable disease” roles when she followed this up with Midnight Sun (Taiyou no Uta). 1 Litre is one of those seminal J-doramas (along with Beautiful Life with KimuTaku and Tokiwa Takako) that tells a tale without a happy ending but in ways that celebrate the joy in life. Co-starring Nishikido Ryo, Fujiki Naohito, Matsuyama Kenichi, and Yakushimaru Hiroko, 1 Litre is based on a true story in the form of a journal written by a high school girl named Aya who was indeed suffering from this disease and died young at age 25. Korea has now decided better late than never and MBC is readying a K-drama version to star Park Bo Young. My reluctance for Korea to remake it has been outweighed by my excitement on Park Bo Young’s long awaited television return and the complete confidence that she is the perfect actress to play this role. This is Erika’s iconic role but Park Bo Young has the looks and acting chops to portray this character from carefree teen to bed-ridden invalid. MBC is interested in airing I Litre in October after Lee Jun Ki’s Two Weeks. I can’t believe I’m such a glutton for punishment, I really haven’t ever gotten back the 1 litre (and more) of tears watching this dorama seeped from me. Check out the awesome MVs of the original below and be prepared to sob like a baby.

I Litre of Tears “Stop and Stare” By One Republic:

I Litre of Tears “Keep Holding On” by Avril Lavigne:


Park Bo Young Cast in K-drama Remake of 1 Litre of Tears to Air on MBC — 81 Comments

  1. I have all the episodes in my laptop. I have seen the movie and bought the English translation of aya’s journal. I know this story pretty well, but I’m boy sure how I feel about it bein remade. I’m gonna have to wait until I see it myself honestly.

    • Me too. I also have all the episodes on my laptop, and I have switched my laptop a few times throughout the years, but 1LoT will always be there. The OST songs moved from my mp3 player to Iphone 3gs to Iphone 5. I have the Chinese copy of the journal on my bookshelf. The film is good too. It felt more raw than the drama.

  2. As much as i love watching this drama, i dont want kdrama to remake this because they tend to prolong their romance thingy,and left important things in their pieces.This drama is the most saddest drama i’ve ever watch!!Every episode make me cry!!!I dont want it get ruined.Most of their j-remake are sucks!

  3. Oh no.. 1LoT is my all-time favourite drama and it the only drama ever that actually made me cry in front of my parents and sister while watching it because I am usually quite good at holding back my tears in front of people.

    I’m not too excited for the Korean remake though. Simply because I love 1LoT too much and seeing how Kdramaworld raped Jin.. hm.

    • I agree!We cried more than a Liter of tears. This is the only drama that my mom, my sister and I cried the entire series. We finished it in just 1 day. I remembered that we end up having bloated faces and puffed eyes the next day. I just hope they will not butcher the original.

  4. Ugh, this show. A part of me wants to watch it again but another part of me doesn’t because I don’t want to cry again.

    “Konayuki” by Remioromen is my favourite OST from this dorama especially the scenes between Erika and Ryo-chan.

  5. The title “1 Litle of tears” is really perfectly chosen. I cried sooooo much and i couldn’t stop watching even though i knew it would get worse and worse….. I think as i was watching i was still hoping that she would get her happy ending somehow, a life, that it was so unfair…Ahhhh This drama is really something and i weirdly recommand it, it hurts but this is a lesson of life that you won’t ever forget.

    PS: The music is great but i won’t watch The MV that you put, i’m too scared LOL, just the thought of it… But i’m definitely watching the Korean version with PArk Bo young. I will be able to handle it. I have to.

  6. Everytime I listen to Konayuki I want to weep.. I can’t watch a remake.. I just can’t! TT_____TT

    It was one of my first jdramas, and I wasn’t even jaded enough like I am now! I have never cried with a drama as I did with that one.

    1 litre? How about a million? ;_;

  7. I love the story of the movie. It is a really sad and heartbreaking movie. Don’t know if I would like to see a K-drama version of the movie though because remakes always failed. There’s a Chinese drama version that’s already out and it was pretty cute. I like the couple, but story-wise, it failed for me. Maybe I’ll watch this depending on who’s the male lead.

  8. Gah! I loved 1 Litre of Tears! I watched it 3 times with English subs and then once more with Korean subs… I don’t know how I feel about a Korean remake though. Sure I loved the romance Aya and Haruto had, but I think the great thing about it was that it was understated and was realistic. I’m worried that the Korean one will make the romance over the top as Korean dramas are prone to doing lol.

    • That was my first thought too. But after seeing Queen of office I think I’m a little less worried. They really sticked to the original J-dorama without making the romance over the top (even if actually, with QoO, I would have prefer them to make it a little more romantic!).

      • Really? That’s good to know. Then again there are really good Korean dramas dealing with illness too like A Rosy Life and… I don’t know the English title, but it was called More Beautiful Than Flowers… hmm was it A Beautiful Life? I’m not sure but this dramas are wonderful and I cried a ton. Hopefully the Korean 1 Litre of tears will be as good as those lol.

  9. A part of me really wants to see this korean adaptation since the original was so perfect and I think Park Bo Young would be good in Aya’s role. But on the other hand I’m not sure I want to cry again as I cried during the J-dorama. I cried so much more than 1 litre of tears…

  10. Oh god, how much tissue was consumed because of 1LoT? It was the single most saddest thing that I’d ever come across, and it was so overwhelmingly heartfelt and sincere. The original was 11 episodes long and just perfect (and ok any longer I think my eyes would have died), I’m not sure if the kdrama drags it out (most likely right?) will the quality suffer? Although i guess Park Bo Young is kind of perfect, I can totally see her in the role.

  11. It was a good dorama, but I didn’t cry 1 liter of tears while watching it. Because I had seen stronger and happier people in similar situation in real life, and that had impressed me even more.

  12. Oh my goodness. I saw 1LoT when it first came out and I was definitely in tears. I echo what everyone who has said this is one of the saddest dramas I have ever seen. I thought it was great in terms of drama quality.

    As for a kdrama remake – I’m not really a fan of remakes but sometimes I like them. I think it’s hard to beat the original. I think the kdrama version would be pretty decent, although I doubt I can muster another sad one like that.

  13. I always avoid watching K-drama if they’re trying to re-ma’2 J-Drama. Just remember how K-drama did to JIN. Its just going to be a disaster to me.
    1LoT is my all-time favorite drama. I remember how much I cry for the beautiful and great story is.

  14. I never get to finish 1LoT. It was so sad and it continuously make my heart ache. I probably will pass this one too. although I’ll check on my girl from time to time.

  15. I really agree with you Koala, this drama really does seep into your bone. I can’t bring myself to rewatch this a second time, but once in a while, something in life would remind me of it. Im really looking forward to this korean adaptation and see their own spin to it. Maybe Aya will finally have a confirmation of the guy that Ryo play?

  16. 1LoT, I give my 1st love to you, and fuyu no Sakura are my all time fave jforams, oh and of course, Itazura na kiss.

    And I don’t want to repeat my mistake by watching jdorams adaptation with high hopes such when I watched TWTWB.
    So… I think I’ll pass.

  17. gah this j-drama… first drama that makes me cried endlessly for the entire series NON STOP…. It just hits all my sadness and sorrow bottom in my heart….
    the excecution is just hits all the right notes eventhough we are not experiencing it.

  18. Whoaa..I don’t know how I feel about this. I love Park Bo Young, I think she can definitely play the role of Aya very well. At the same time, I don’t want them to ruin 1LoT with a remake like what they did to Jin. Sigh.

    And yes, 1 Liter of Tears will always have a special place in my heart. It’s where I “met” 3 of my fave J-actors: Ryo-chan, Fujiki Naohito, and Matsuken. I wonder who will play their characters in the K-drama remake.

    • What is this jin you speak of?
      I have no clue what that is. 😉

      Some things are left better forgotten.

      • @ilikemangos, Jin was a brilliant J-doroma remade into Dr. Jin (starring Mr. Hand Towel)…and we all know what a mess that was. 😉

    • My friend actually watched Doctor Jin (without knowing about the Jdorama version, which isn’t a surprise given how Joramas seldom get the spotlight in comparison to Kdramas these days), and I persuaded him to watch Jin instead. LOL.

    • Wait, who was Matsuken playing in this dorama?
      I watched this one on TV when I was in middle school (8 years ago, eep!) and
      I don’t remember seeing him there so i’m curious.

  19. This drama is pouring with emotions that no other dramas can compare.
    It indeed made you cry 1 Litre of Tears (if not more), found myself crying every single episode, even if it was a happy scene.
    Other that S. Erika, I think N. Ryo was amazing. I hope they can find just a amazing as this two in k-version

  20. oh dear…I’m not sure I have enough tears left in me. Watching the original always left me with a huge pile of tissues from episode 2 till the end.

  21. I’m not sure how I feel about this. It’s such an iconic dorama and so few j to k remakes are really any good.

  22. Wait and see on this one. They will be romanticizing this more than the original as most kdramas are wont to do but they better NOT screw with the beautifully sad ending!

    As for cast, somehow i feel like lee jong suk has that somber but mischievous quality that Ryo’s charActer possessed.

  23. ,it’s funny how most of our worries about the remake are centered on the possibility of it being turned into a love story (which we love in korean dramas) rather than a “life/human” drama.. I myself am hoping that they will be able to retain the simplicity and rawness of the original. I have faith that PBY can pull it off..

  24. This drama has to be the top Japanese drama for me. It is definitely one of my favorite dramas anywhere, just don’t know how to rate my absolute faves…..
    I love me some melodramas and this is one I tend to watch often. I love crying my eyes out and someyhing tugging at my heart and this definitely pulls all sorts of emotions out of me.
    I don’t know how the korean version will be. I tend to love the Japanese versions more than Korean ones but I will give it a try.

  25. According to MR. X, the timeslot was already given to another drama (Medical Top Team) and this is just press propaganda by the company trying to take over the timeslot. They probably haven’t even cast her since I don’t see her signing anything till a timeslot is confirmed.

  26. I remember I still cried while talking to a friend about this drama a week after finishing it. She was like “yah! Cut it’s just a drama!” So I told her it was based on real life story. She watched it, we end up crying together. Ah, silly her.. and me too 🙂

  27. ah memories .. i’m crying like crazy person … its so heartbreaking … from first to last episode, my 01 Litre of Tears collected. 🙁

  28. Well Park Bo Young is a good actress and I like her.
    But yeah, I cried buckets watching this it was terrible.
    I read some chapters of the real Aya’s diary, just utterly heartbreaking. They added a love interest to the dorama because it was Aya’s mothers wish because Aya sadly never experienced it. Her parents and siblings are still involved with everything regarding Aya and work with getting attention to the disease.
    Korean newslets are calling it a fictional story which is weird because it’s based on a real story based on the life of Kito Aya and her

    • Well said. I wonder if the remake will be more of the true story like the earlier movie. I can see Aya’s family agreeing to a true biography of Aya;s life. What I can’t see if Aya’s family agreeing to a remake of the dorama because of the risk of turning such a beautiful life story into sordid kdrama cliches and plot devices. I really really hope that the remake will be dignified in honor of Aya’s life and messages to the world.

  29. I remember finishing this dorama within 2 days and spending every hour after dinner crying my heart out, from 9 pm to 3am, from the first episode when she found out about her illness, to the last when it all ended. The same thing happened when I loaned my friend the video, and we both had puffy eyes for the week.

    Midnight Sun was another moving tale, but 1LOT was the one that stays.

    I am not excited about a Korean remake though….Jdorama 1LOT is symbolic for me, and I’m not ready for it to be remade into a money-making franchise.

    These doramas are what Japan does best!

  30. Great…now I cry buckets just by watching those two MV’s. This drama is iconic. Like all of you, I cried literally every episode. I will pass this one since I am not quite confident K-remake will do this one justice. Seriously, this is the best inspirational drama of all time in my drama list, so I don’t want to see it gets ruined!

  31. I stayed up all night watching it…sobbing through the 11 episodes. Gawd I may not remember the scenes much but I remember how it made me feel and I never rewatched it ever since….just watching the MV again got me teary eyed…not sure if I have to courage to sit through 16 hours of this again…

  32. I’m not really into tearjerker dramas but I watched 1 Litre of Tears because I liked Sawajiri Erika from Taiyou no Uta. I don’t agree that it should be remake because the only Korean remake that I actually like is their remake of Dragon Zakura. Besides, unlike other Korean remake, 1LoT is a TRUE STORY! Therefore, I have doubts that the Korean remake would stick to the original because knowing their penchant for making their viewers swoon by romantic gestures, they would definitely try to add some sparks between Aya (Sawajiri) and Haruto (Nishikido). In short, this would become just another Korean love story.

    • I hope they won’t do that, I think the Japanese version did a good job in portraying haruto love and aya, not too much romance, the family bit and friendship just means a lot more. Hopefully mbc will stick to that format. One Litre is not some high school love story 😉

  33. Have you all seen the SP? It’s really moving, because Haruto, after so many years still couldn’t forget Aya. Even after 5 years.

  34. Gah, butterflies in my stomach after hearing this. For me, the 2005 dorama is one of the only drama’s to transcend reviews/discussion/recaps etc. You watch it and are forced to step back once your done to disentangle yourself and remind yourself that Aya Kito left much sunshine in the world behind her. And I’m currently at a point in life where I totally needed to be reminded of her drive for life. Hehe, perfect timing MBC 🙂

    Lol, I *want* to say I’ll watch this MBC version with a critical eye, but is it even possible to watch *this* storyline critically?! With bleary eyes and a tear-stricken face? Anyhow, I am nervous though. What if MBC mess it up!? It would be a big shame for the producers to not do justice to this true story. Hmm I can’t say I also wouldn’t hate for drama-sphere newbies (i.e. those to whom this MBC version will act as an introductory portal to the 2005 version) to end up preferring the K-drama version over the J-dorama (e.g. the J-dorama HYD is vastly superior to K-drama’s BOF) But meh.. I suppose this is a matter of opinion and opinions must be respected.

    I will have to take your word for it about Park Bo Young. Have never watched any of her drama’s myself. Fellow readers – which of her drama’s is the best/would you recommend?

  35. hi koala . . . i just love how you phrase this – “a tale that tells without a happy ending but in ways that celebrate the joys in life” – this encompasses all what this drama is about!

  36. Omg! I was just wondering if wether or not Korea would make a remake of this!and then this news;) I love one Litre of tears so much I don’t think I ever get over the sadness… It is just so much love.. I wonder who will play next to park bo young, I think she’s going to nail this one. Maybe they will make an idol to play the role of nishikido, erm but I can’t seem to think of any idols who can have the chops to do it tho haha. Or maybe they would go with the true story where she didn’t have any love interest. Oh well I’m looking forward for this.

    I think I’m gonna go and watch the special or maybe I should just keep my tears for the Korean ones;) ahhh another chaeki banner… Sometimes I wonder if you are a closet toast haha. Thanks for the info..

  37. I cried so hard in this jdorama.. I’m looking forward to this esp that I have been thinking why Park Bo Young doesn’t have a drama right now (with her increasing popularity since Wolf Boy. This is indeed a good news.

  38. I really love this J-drama, and I don’t mind to see Korean version. But, Park Bo Young? Um, I don’t hate her but I don’t think she fit in this role. My image for this role is Kim Yoo-jung, and maybe with Yeo Jin-goo? Then it’ll be perfect.

  39. oh my gosh. I believe Park Bo Young can do Erika’s character too. But then after so many years I realized I still haven’t move on to this drama. So beautiful. :3

  40. Wow, I’m actually surprise that it took them so long to remake 1LOT. K-drama used to be all about the incurable diseases.

  41. Just reading this made me cry. *SOB* 1LoT is a very sad drama but I never felt manipulated. I gave my mom a copy of the episodes one week and when I visited her the following week, her eyes were still swollen from all the crying.

    I’m looking forward to Park Bo Young’s take on Aya’s story. I am confident she’ll do good. I just hope the production team won’t butcher this classic drama.

  42. please!!! PLEASE!!! KOREA!!! don’t kill this classic! it has been ages when I first watched this drama but i can still recall it so clearly! if you mess up you will be punished by the drama gods!!!

  43. oh my gosh 1 litre of tears is one of my faves, my eyes has swollen over the nonstop crying and with many scattered used tissue all over the place. i really like erika sawajiri here, she done a great job though in real life she is a mess! hope the remake for kdarama will not over exaggerates the story

  44. i’ve seen some of the episodes when it was aired here in the Philippines. and sure enough, it was a really sad but heart warming drama. I’m a self confessed Park bo young fan And been waiting for her comeback. but this kind of story is not on my mind. i was hoping for a romance comedy genre. Park bo young is being known for her versatility, so, i’m sure she’ll give justice to the role as being the lead. and that’s a non- biased opinion 😉

  45. Man! Korea’s got some pretty big shoes to fill. . . Expectations are staggeringly high for this drama. Dialogues, pacing and casting is extremely important. . ., and so’s the OST. . . Remioromen’s Konayuki is still stuck with me to this very day and I still listen to it from time to time. . . as the article says, there are just some things that just won’t go away.

    I’m looking forward to it.

  46. I cried and cried in every episode. I’m looking forward to this remake now that Park Bo Young is in it. Girl can act!

  47. Haha looks like there were never a remake to begin with. I think I prefer it that way. The Korean remake of Japanese dramas or mangas always ends up too disappointing. The Japanese 1 Litre of tears is just too perfect.

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