Girls’ Generation member Yoona and actor Kim Jeonghoon will join Chinese actor Lin Gengxin in Hunan TV’s upcoming historical drama called Wushen Zhao Zilong (武神赵子龙).
It was announced last month that Korean singer-actress Im Yoona and Korean singer-actor Kim Jeonghoon have been cast in their first Chinese TV series, a big budget historical drama called Wushen Zhao Zilong that will air this August. Since the original casting announcement, more details about the drama have been released.
Wushen Zhao Zilong – tentatively called Zhao Zi Long as its English title by the show’s official Weibo account – will be a 60-episode drama series telling the story of real-life historical hero Zhao Zilong. Based on the Chinese literature classic Romance of the Three Kingdoms, the show will be set during the Han Dynasty, and will depict the various battles and loves of the army general. Two notable military successes audiences can look forward to include the defeat of Cao Cao and the rescue of the Shu Han state.
The drama itself has the support of two acclaimed Chinese industry professionals. Wushen Zhao Zilong will be a collaboration between famous producer Cheng Lidong – who previously worked on the 2010 series Journey to the West – and Hollywood action choreographer Guo Jianyong – who has the two Red Cliff films as credits to his name. As such, this big name collaboration has attracted a production investment of over USD$32 million.
Taiwanese director Ding Yangguo, who has experience from Meteor Shower and Smiling Pasta, will be the drama’s main director, while Ying Ning will be in charge of its script. It has also been reported that Wushen Zhao Zilong will use the same crew members from popular Chinese historical dramas All Men Are Brothers and Heroes in Sui and Tang Dynasties.
The two Korean cast members will be the sole Korean actors in an all Chinese cast, so it is expected their lines will be dubbed over in Mandarin. Other cast members include Jia Qing, Guli Nazha, Godfrey Gao, Qiao Zhenyu, Yan Kuan, and Li Jiahang.
The three leads, Lin Gengxin, Im Yoona, and Kim Jeonghoon, will form the TV drama’s main love triangle. Lin Gengxin will portray General Zhao Zilong, and Yoona will act as his main love interest, Xiahou Qingyi. It is expected that Kim Jeonghoon will play a character called Li Zhi. The love triangle becomes complicated when Xiahou Qingyi discovers Zhao Zilong is her father’s murderer.
At a Girls’ Generation fan meeting in Shanghai over the weekend, Yoona was recorded speaking Mandarin to the audience, asking fans to anticipate her first Chinese drama. Judging by her accent, it seems the actress has been working on her Chinese-speaking skills lately.
Meanwhile, as Wushen Zhao Zilong will be Kim Jeonghoon’s first historical drama, the actor has assigned special importance to the project. Recently, the actor has been doing research on China’s Han Dynasty, as well as making regular visits to the gym in order to be fully prepared for the film shoot.
Production begins this month, with one of its filming locations being the Qin palace at Hengdian World Studios. The drama will air this August on Hunan TV.