Can the musical “Crash Landing on You” repeat the success of an original TV drama?

Musical “Crash Landing on You” (Show On Company)

The musical version of “Crash Landing On You,” based on the 2019 megahit TV series of the same title, was unveiled on Friday.

The musical features familiar names from the TV and theater stages in the iconic lead roles of Ri Jung-hyuk and Yoon Se-ri. Lee Jang-woo, Lee Kyu-hyung, and Min Woo-hyuk star as Ri, the North Korean officer, while Im Hye-young, Kim Ryeo-won, and Na Ha-na portray Yoon, the heiress of a South Korean conglomerate. .

The cast and creative team said they feel pressured by the huge popularity and international recognition of the TV drama series, which starred actors Hyun Bin and Son Ye-jin in the lead roles, but they focused on doing their best.

“I was under a lot of pressure. Since Hyun Bin is synonymous with ‘Crash Landing on You’, I thought it was better to express a lowly North Korean in my own way rather than trying to defeat Hyun Bin,” Lee Jang-woo told reporters on Tuesday.

While acknowledging similar pressure, Lee Kyu-hyung and Lim Hye-young pointed out that the format was different and that they were focusing on creating their own version in the stage form.

“It’s almost impossible to express a 24-hour dramatic feature in less than three hours. I thought a lot about how to develop my emotions in each scene,” said Lee Kyu-hyung.

“It’s not that I didn’t feel pressured, but it didn’t interfere with my work. I thought a lot about the points that could show Yoon Se-ri’s inner self in a three-hour journey,” Lim said.

For the creative team, getting a television show on stage was a challenge.

Park Ji-hye, who directed the musical stage adaptation, said that some of the iconic scenes from the TV series, such as Yoon Se-ri crashing into Ri Jung-hyuk in North Korean territory in a crash accident paragliding, could not be satisfactorily recreated. .

“I really wanted to save the crash landing scene, but for safety reasons I couldn’t create the feeling of flying through the sky,” Park said. Park previously directed the musicals “Maybe Happy Ending” and “Gentleman’s Guide.”

Music director Lee Sang-hoon, who is best known for his drama series like “Signal” and “Hospital Playlist,” created the music for the musical, which is his first engagement with a commercial musical.

“In TV series, the music is the background, but for the stage, the music is a main element through which the story and the emotions are conveyed, so I felt it was about very different genres,” Lee said.

The musical is initially testing the waters in the domestic market, but the production team hopes to attract overseas fans, as the TV version did.

“It’s a love story between a man and a woman that flourished in our particular situation of division, and I think it can appeal to audiences around the world,” added the director.

The musical is part of a trend of hit television shows being adapted into other formats. Several TV series, including the 1994 medical thriller “M,” “Another Miss Oh,” based on the 2016 romantic comedy of the same name, and “Hotel Del Luna,” another 2019 hit series, are in the works. creation in musicals.

“Crash Landing on You” runs through November 12 at Coex Artium in Seoul.

Cast of the musical

The cast of the musical “Crash Landing on You” pose for photos during a press conference Tuesday at Coex Artium in Seoul. (Park Ga-young/The Korea Herald)