Risking Life For Love: The Would-Have-Been Meeting of 3 People with a “Predestined Relationship” – Ha Ji Won, Lee Jin Wook, Chen Bolin

HJW-LJW-CBcheshirecat1023: I just had to let this madness out of my system! 

It wasn’t even a could-have-been; It was a would-have-been.

March 6, 2015 – Ha Ji Won was courted by SBS to star in the Korean remake of hit Taiwanese drama, In Time With You, and play the Korean version of Ariel Lin’s Cheng You Qing.

March 19, 2015 – Ha Ji Won had yet to confirm whether she’d sign on to K-In Time With You (working title: The Time I’ve Loved You, 7000 Days), yet a romantic comedy film was added to her upcoming slate, titled Risking Life For Love. The romcom, being a Korean-Chinese co-production, was also courting Chen Bolin, who, coincidentally, had played the male lead in the original In Time With You.

March 20, 2015Lee Jin Wook officially turned down Hello Monster (I Remember You), where he was to play a cop. He was reported to be positively considering 7000 Days instead, where he’d act opposite Ha Ji Won (still not yet confirmed) and play her 17-year best friend. Funny ‘cause Chen Bolin had played Lee Jin Wook’s role in the Chinese remake of hit Korean movie, Miss Granny (Chinese title: 20 Once Again).

Miss Granny_Lee Jin Wook

Lee Jin Wook as Han Seung Woo in Miss Granny

20 Once Again_Chen Bolin

Chen Bolin as Tan Zhi Ming in 20 Once Again

April 13, 2015 – Both Ha Ji Won and Lee Jin Wook officially signed on to 7000 Days.

May 13, 2015 – Ha Ji Won and Chen Bolin were assumed to be a lock to star in the upcoming film, Risking Life For Love. As if it wasn’t coincidental enough that K-ITWY lead actress Ha Ji Won and ITWY lead actor Chen Bolin would work together, K-ITWY actor Lee Jin Wook would join the two in the movie as well. Reaction: Okay, get Ariel Lin, too.

Ariel Lin

May 25, 2015 – Hallyu World filmed an interview with Ha Ji Won. The interview was released on July 9, 2015, and in it, she personally confirmed Risking Life For Love with Chen Bolin and Lee Jin Wook.

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June 1, 2015 – The Time We Were Not In Love first filming day

June 27, 2015 – The Time We Were Not In Love pilot episode

August 16, 2015 – The Time We Were Not In Love last filming day and final episode

August 19, 2015 – Ha Ji Won expressed in her post-drama interview that she’d like to work with Lee Jin Wook again. This statement of hers raised eyebrows because why would she mention wanting to work with Lee Jin Wook again if they were going to work together again in two weeks for Risking Life For Love? Uh-oh.

August 23, 2015 – A tweet of one staff attached Chun Jung Myung’s name to Risking Life For Love with Ha Ji Won and Chen Bolin. I didn’t like where this was going…

August 26, 2015 – The media started reporting about Chun Jung Myung as “Ha Ji Won’s man,” the other leg of the love triangle in Risking Life For Love, and Lee Jin Wook dropping the movie due to “schedule conflict.” I cried. 

September 6, 2015 – Risking Life For Love first filming day

December 5, 2015 Risking Life For Love last filming day

 TTWWNIL Poster 1

I must be crazy. Maybe I really am. But really, it disappointed me so much. I admit, I had expectations of Risking Life For Love because to have the Korean Cheng You Qing in a love triangle with the original Li Da Ren and the Korean Li Da Ren in what was said to be a life risking romance sounded surreal and perfect at the same time. Perhaps the production could even get Ariel Lin for a cameo appearance if the original plan pushed through. I had expectations for Risking Life For Love because I felt it could be Ha Ji Won and Lee Jin Wook’s chance to make up for not meeting the expectations in The Time We Were Not In Love, which was definitely not their fault but the lackluster script’s. In fact, they were so good and so hot together in The Time We Were Not In Love, and honestly, Lee Jin Wook was the best thing in the entire drama. I guess Ha Ji Won was right when she said that all female viewers would fall for Lee Jin Wook, “I think he might be at his most charismatic in this drama.” And I thought Risking Life For Love was God’s gift second chance. With Chen Bolin was, of course, a huge bonus.

Risking Life For Love casting had been completed and confirmed by Ha Ji Won herself before The Time We Were Not In Love started filming and aired its pilot episode. When it was first reported that it was going to be Ha Ji Won and Chen Bolin, it seemed interesting enough to me, but the excitement wasn’t really there because nothing much was said about the movie, and a Korean-Chinese co-production wasn’t something extraordinary. Besides, Ha Ji Won hasn’t done well in Chungmuro since Sector 7, that’s why I wanted her movie comeback to be grand, something on the level of Haeundae or Closer to Heaven. When it was followed by another report stating that Lee Jin Wook would be completing the love triangle in Risking Life For Love, somehow it got me going wow! ‘cause I’d sign up for In Time With You crossover anytime even though we had yet to see Ha Ji Won and Lee Jin Wook in The Time We Were Not In Love that time. A month later, Ha Ji Won and Lee Jin Wook surprised me with their oh-so-good-so-hot chemistry they weren’t even trying, and man, just Episode 1, no, just after seeing their interactions at the press conference that made me giddy, I found myself looking forward to their reunion in Risking Life For Love right after the drama. For a moment, I even forgot that Bolin would be with them in the movie. I didn’t love The Time We Were Not In Love, but Ha Ji Won and Lee Jin Wook built an awesome, effortless chemistry that I wouldn’t trade for the world. Thus, whenever I wanted to curse on my screen for Hana’s stupid decisions and for getting impatient of Won for not manning up, I’d just have to remind myself about their upcoming movie. When the drama was ending—because I must admit, no matter how many times I complained, even though it seemed like I was never satisfied, I’d miss Hana and Won—I just had to remind myself of that movie. I knew, we all knew, there was something to look forward to.

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But then, bam! All those hopes were crushed the moment it was confirmed that Lee Jin Wook would no longer be appearing in the movie. Everything happened so abruptly. No valid reason was given except for that bullsh*t excuse, “schedule conflict.” Where the hell was the schedule conflict? Granted, had Lee Jin Wook’s movie, Time Renegade, premiered in the last quarter of 2015 as planned, there’d be a schedule conflict because it’d be difficult to film a movie and promote another at the same time. But Time Renegade’s release date has been pushed to March 2016. On the other hand, Lee Jin Wook’s upcoming drama, Goodbye, Mr. Black, with Moon Chae Won, has been confirmed since September 2015, but it hasn’t made any progress until now. It was originally scheduled to premiere on SBS following The Village: Achiara’s Secret but has been moved to MBC and will premiere in early 2016. “1+1 Couple” fans even expressed their disappointment over the fact that Lee Jin Wook basically “chose” Moon Chae Won over Ha Ji Won. That could be true, but only Lee Jin Wook knows the absolute truth. I don’t know what’s keeping Goodbye, Mr. Black from filming when clearly it has a complete cast. I just hope Goodbye, Mr. Black pushes through because I’d hate to think that Lee Jin Wook dropped Risking Life For Love for nothing (if it was really his decision to drop the movie).

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If Lee Jin Wook had taken on Risking Life For Love, he’d have played Rok-hwan, a cop who’s longtime friends with Jane Han (played by Ha Ji Won). My theory is that Rok-hwan likes Jane as more than a friend, but Jane likes the mysterious guy, Jason (played by Chen Bolin). I guess Lee Jin Wook has had enough of playing the ideal guy friend, and maybe, just maybe, this time, Rok-hwan is just a friend to Jane, unlike Choi Won, who, obviously, wasn’t just a friend to Hana since the beginning. Somehow, I feel time purposely didn’t let Lee Jin Wook join Risking Life For Love so that I could completely ship Ha Ji Won and Chen Bolin in the movie. For sure, if Lee Jin Wook is the other leg of the love triangle, I’d go and sink with him, or if Bolin’s character is equally worthy, it’d be hard for me choose which one to ship. It’s strange, but something’s telling me that I should ship Ji Won and Bolin this time. I don’t have anything against Chun Jung Myung, I like him enough, but if ever the guy best friend and Jane become the endgame, I’d seriously make a fuss, and you know why. I only have one namsachin, and I pledge loyalty. (LOL) It must be Jason or they could just die all three.

Bolin-Ariel-SIDA    

Nothing is final until it’s final. Perhaps this wasn’t the right time for a Ha Ji WonLee Jin Wook reunion. (I never wished for a reunion, actually. Circumstances gave me false hope.) TIMING. If they’re like their Taiwanese counterparts, Ariel Lin and Bolin Chen, maybe we’ll have to wait for four years, just like how Ariel and Bolin went from In Time With You (2011) to Go Lala Go 2 (2015). I can dream, right? 😉 

*Images credit to owners

© 2015, cheshirecat1023. All rights reserved.

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