On Monday, Lee took his Instagram to express his frustration. “Like any other dramas that have made offers to me, this drama (iHQ’s Sponsor) sent me scripts for four episodes. I’m the male lead, but I appeared in 3 scenes in episode 1, 4 scenes in episode 2, four scenes in episode 3, and 5 scenes in episode 4,” he wrote.
The actor explained he had a meeting with director Kwak Ki Won and the head of the production company (Victory Contents) to address the issue. “The director told me, ‘Don’t worry. We are going to fix the scripts. After the second lead dies in episode 5, your story will come out more.’ But it was a lie,” he continued. “I appear in 5 scenes in episode 5 and 6 scenes in episode 6. I started worrying because the drama is a 12-part series. So I called and texted the director. Anyone in my position would do the same.”
Lee stressed, “What kind of an actor wants to act in a series where the male lead only appears in 8 scenes at most when one episode has 50 scenes.” He added, “Was I a power trip to the director and writer? They have deceived me. They can’t use me as a shield to satisfy their self-interest.”
Soon, Victory Contents also issued an additional statement in support of the actor. The company even released text messages that the actor and the director exchanged, texts that the writer had sent, and the confirmation that the director wrote. They emphasized that what had happened had nothing to do with the actor’s power trip.
“It was in May that the production team asked writer Park Kye Hyung to revise the script concerning the screen time of the male lead. Lee Ji Hoon had not even read the script then,” they wrote. “Then in July, the production company, the director, and the writer met to discuss the scripts. And even then, the revisions we have asked for were not done. Moreover, what Lee Ji Hoon texted with the director was about the background of the character.”
Meanwhile, Sponsor is iHQ’s new Monday-Tuesday drama about four men and women who go out to find a sponsor who will satisfy their desires. Originally, the series had the title “Desire.” Park Kye Hyung penned the scripts, and Kwak Ki Won helmed the production. However, they were replaced with writer Han Hee Jung and director Lee Chul.
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