Squid Game actor Lee Jung-joon will be joining the cast of upcoming MBC K-drama The Season of Kkokdu (literal translation) in place of the late Lee Ji-han.
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On November 7, a representative from South Korean cable network MBC shared in a statement to News Inside that Lee Jung-joon, who previously starred in Squid Game and Cheer Up, has been cast in The Season of Kkokdu as a successor for the late Lee Ji-han’s role as Jung Yi-deun.
The Season of Kkokdu is an upcoming fantasy romance series that follows a grim reaper named Kkokdu (played by Kim Jung-hyun), who descends on the world every 99 years to punish humans. On a particular year he is to arrive on Earth, he meets Han Gye-jeol (Im Soo-hyang), a doctor with peculiar abilities, and disguises himself as a visiting doctor. Jung Yi-deun – previously portrayed by Lee Ji-han and now to be played by Lee – was described as an ex-boyfriend of Gye-jeol’s.
The news of Lee’s casting on the upcoming show came shortly after the series’ production team announced that they had resumed filming for The Season Of Kkokdu, after it was put on hold following the sudden passing of Lee Ji-han during the Itaewon crowd crush tragedy late last month. The cast and crew of The Season of Kkokdu also made appearances at the late actor’s wake to pay their respects during the pause in production.
Following the news of Lee’s passing, co-star Im Soo-hyang paid tribute to the late actor on her personal Instagram last week. “Ji-han, you have to be happy in a better place,” wrote the actress at the time. “I felt so cold, sad, and miserable after you were taken away so soon as you were just starting because I knew so well how hard you worked and how you wanted to do a good job.”