Following the trend of the Korean pop culture, Korean dramas have always been a hot topic among the young ones as well as the older generations. This current craze is prevalent not only in Korea, but also throughout Asia and more recently, the European countries as well. Before K-pop became so widespread with its fresh and unique music, Korean dramas were the first that hit the world some years back.
On the other hand, there is this drama which caught my eyes earlier this year. It’s none other than Korea’s top-rated cable TV drama, TEN. Some of you might have already watched or heard about it, but let me bring you some insights into this drama. What sets it apart from other dramas is that, the 10-episode crime procedural series, TEN, is one of the first Korean cable TV series that ventures into bolder and edgier territory to engage viewers at an unprecedented level.
Here are some interesting highlights and synopsis of TEN:
(Abstracted from the press release of TEN)
- TEN is a drama about a special investigations unit formed to tackle the most violent and mysterious cases that have less than a 10% chance of being solved.
- The production of TEN took 3 years and 8 months to complete, with each episode incurring a hefty USD $140,000 production budget.
- TEN was awarded with “Best Contents Award” at the 그리메 (Guerime) Awards 2011 and Grand Prize at 2012 Cable TV Program Awards.
- TEN took over the number one spot in ratings among cable channels during its broadcast, occupying the top spot continuously for 9 weeks, with the last episode obtaining a 3.16% average rating nationwide (one of the highest rated cable dramas in Korea this year – Source: AGB Nielsen Media Research, Total Cable Households).
Starring Joo Sang Wook and Jo An, this suspense drama is one that you should include in your ‘to-watch-list-of-dramas’. Having said that, we are extremely honored to have our very first email interview with the lead actor of TEN, Joo Sang Wook.
Joo Sang Wook: I played the role of Yeo Ji Hoon, an investigator in a special affair team. He is very well-informed and has a strong character. Initially, I expected fighting scenes in this series… But actor Kim Sung Ho did all the fighting scenes. Yeo Ji Hoon is the mind in this show. He uses his brain to solve cases and doesn’t need to fight to solve a problem. In the show, he is an investigator and professor in psychology who uses deduction methods to help him in solving almost perfect crimes. You have to watch it and you will know what I mean. The series is engaging.
Joo Sang Wook: I talked a lot with our producer about Yeo Ji Hoon’s image and personality. I also searched and studied many movies and TV series for that. There was an old Japanese TV series which was aired about ten years ago, where Kimura Takuya was cast in that series. It is called “One Million Stars Falling from the Sky”, a very successful TV series in Japan. I feel that Kimura Takuya who starred in the TV series is somewhat similar to Yeo Ji Hoon in TEN. I have watched many TV series to learn and perform better in my role. I don’t know if I performed well in my role, but I think that I have expressed my intentions well.
Q: Could you share with us any unforgettable moments during the filming process of TEN?
Joo Sang Wook: Every shooting was very hard for me. Filming schedule was very tight so I couldn’t sleep well. When we filmed the last episode of the first series, I had to shoot both the present and flashback scenes. I was exhausted from filming all night.
Q: Is there any deciding factor that influences you to take up on this drama?
Joo Sang Wook: I really like the synopsis and Yeo Ji Hoon’s character in “Special Affair Team Ten” when I saw the scripts of the first and second episodes. They looked like a movie rather than a TV series. I really like it so I wanted to accept that challenge.
Joo Sang Wook: I ended the filming of TEN awhile ago so I am taking a rest now. In the meantime, I’ve read several scripts for a movie and I think I will be cast in a Korean movie. I will also be going to China for the filming of a Chinese TV series later this year for three months. That pretty sums up all I have now.
With Joo’s upcoming filming projects and plans, I really can’t wait to catch him on screen for his next movie or drama series. Will you be looking forward to it as much as I do?