Korea’s version of the political thriller drama Designated Survivor officially started Saturday its release of promos with stills featuring actor Ji Jin-hee, the male lead in the series.
The upcoming drama, titled Designated Survivor: 60 Days, centers on Korea’s Minister of Environment who is suddenly sworn in as acting President of the country following an unprecedented terrorist attack in the National Assembly that killed several high-ranking government officials.
Ji Jin-hee (Misty) plays Environment Minister Park Moo-jin, who is also a professor at Korea Advanced Institute of Science And Technology (KAIST). After the terrible and shocking incident that caused the demise of South Korea’s President and other officials that are eligible to succeed as the new president, he as the “designated survivor” becomes the acting president for 60 days and is left with the responsibility to find the perpetrators of the horrific crime.
In the context of American government, a designated survivor is an individual in the presidential line of succession who is sent to a secure and undisclosed location whenever the President, the Vice President, and other officials in the line of succession gather at one location for very important events such as the State of the Union address and the presidential inauguration. The designated survivor (played by Kiefer Sutherland) in the original version of the series is the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and the 13th in line to the presidency according to the real and current presidential order of succession. In South Korea, meanwhile, the Minister of Environment is no. 14 in the order of succession.
In one of the released stills, Ji Jin-hee is shown partially sitting on his desk at his new office just a few days after he assumes the presidency. He seems to be worried about something and is lost in thought. In another photo, he has also a pensive expression and wears an eyeglass just like his American counterpart. Park Moo-jin is reportedly similar to the protagonist in the original version of the drama in that he assesses the gains and losses in any situation before making a final decision and get through to the people around him with his sincerity. On the other hand, he is very different from the latter because he is a scientist who is expected to approach everything rationally and make use of accurate facts in making decisions.
Designated Survivor: 60 Days also stars Son Seok-gu as Park Moo-jin’s main aide and secretary general who will later become the Presidential Secretary for Administration. This character (Aaron Shore) was played by Mexican actor Adan Canto in the American version.
The Korean remake of Designated Survivor is written by Kim Tae-hee, who penned Beautiful Mind and Sungkyunkwan Scandal, and helmed by Yoo Jong-seon, who co-directed What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim and Descendants Of The Sun. It will air on tvN in the second half of the year.
The first two seasons of the original Designated Survivor were broadcast on ABC from 2016 to 2018. The network cancelled it afterwards but Netflix picked it up for a third season that is up for release on June 7, 2019.