Musical adaptation of ‘Crash Landing On You’ will have fans hearkening back to series
For every screen-to-stage adaptation, a question follows: Is it just an aspiring profitable venture hoping to reap off the benefits of the original or is there real value in the remake?
The musical adaptation of smash hit tvN K-drama “Crash Landing On You” (2019-20) is the former, but to its credit, confidently so.
The three-hour show manages to pack the entire 16-part series, almost exactly following the narrative of the drama series which is about a South Korean chaebol heiress Yoon Se-ri, played by actor Son Ye-jin, and a North Korean military officer Ri Jeong-hyuk, portrayed by Hyun Bin, who fall in love after the heiress accidentally lands in North Korea while paragliding.
The musical is so eager to get to its romantic duets and elaborate fight scenes that everything else building up to these moments is decidedly fast forwarded.
Also, much of the background of the characters and their intricate relationships aren’t explained enough and audiences are left to trace their memories back to two years ago when they watched the drama to figure out what is going on in the musical.
It is a show for those who have watched the drama “Crash Landing On You,” which, to the credit of producers and creatives, is probably the majority of the people who chose to watch the musical anyway.
The musical has an ambitious and visually-appealing cast, many of whom have proved their talent on screen as well, such as actor Lee Jang-woo from drama series “Glory Jane, I Do, I Do” (2011), “My Only One” (2018) and “Homemade Love Story” (2020), and Lee Yi-kyung from dramas “Descendants of the Sun” (2016) and “Welcome to Waikiki” (2018).
The show contains 22 tuneful, pop-inflected numbers. All but one was newly written for the show.
Female duo Davichi’s “Sunset” which was part of the drama series’ soundtrack is sung in the second act by Seo Dan, a North Korean heiress, and Gu Seung-joon, a conman who falls in love with Seo Dan.
According to Popmusic and T2N Media, which holds the copyright for the musical “Crash Landing On You” the show is set to open in more countries.
Earlier this month, the companies signed a contract with Japanese television station Fuji TV which gave the channel the exclusive right to the musical version of “Crash Landing on You.”
The producer of the Korean show Kim Tae-hyung said in a press release last week that there are also plans to open a version of the musical with the original Korean cast as well as one with a Japanese cast.
“Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia have also shown interest in obtaining the license,” he added.
“Crash Landing On You” will run through Nov. 13 at the COEX Shinhan Card Artium in Gangnam District, southern Seoul.
Actors Lee Kyu-hyung, Min Woo-hyuk and Lee Jang-woo alternate the role of Ri Jeong-hyuk, and Lim Hye-young, Kim Ryeo-won and Na Ha-na alternate the role of Yoon Se-ri.
BY LEE JIAN [email@example.com]