April’s Naeun (Lee Na-eun), who is part of the main cast of SBS’s upcoming series Taxi Driver, will be leaving the series amid her bullying controversy.
On March 8, an official from Taxi Driver‘s production team said in a statement:
“Hello. This is Studio S, the production company of SBS’s Friday-Saturday drama Taxi Driver. After a consultation with Lee Na-eun’s agency, the production crew of Taxi Driver has decided to replace the actress, who was scheduled to appear in the drama as part of the main cast.
We ask for understanding from the viewers regarding the delay of this statement being released as it took time to thoroughly assess public opinion regarding this situation as well as cast a replacement actress for the now vacant role.
Taxi Driver has already finished 60 percent of the filming. All of [Naeun’s] scenes will be refilmed with a new actress taking over.
We at Studio S and the Taxi Driver production team will do our best to present a great drama. Thank you.”
Taxi Driver is an action-revenge thriller about a private taxi company that avenges its customers who are being mistreated in the society. It stars Lee Je-hoon (Where Stars Land), Esom (Save Me 2), Kim Eui-sung (Arthdal Chronicles), Jang Hyuk-jin (Awaken), Cha Ji-yeon (Scent of a Woman), and Bae Yoo-ram (Zombie Detective). Naeun (Extraordinary You) was cast as Go-eun, the company’s hacker and tech expert. For her role in the drama, Naeun made some changes in her appearance, such as cutting her hair short, but eventually had to leave the cast after a fierce protest from the public.
Previously, Netizen A, who claimed to be the younger brother of Lee Hyun-joo, a former member of the girl group April, insisted that her sister was bullied by the members, including Naeun. He revealed that his sister suffered greatly after being “subjected to bullying within the group” and “had a lot of issues, such as panic disorder and shortness of breath.” After the revelation, the netizens, who became suspicious of the bullying accusations, re-examined the past videos of Hyun-joo with the other members of April.
DSP Media, April’s agency, said it would legally respond to the netizen who claims to be Hyun-joo’s younger brother.
Meanwhile, Taxi Driver is slated to premiere on April 9.