Apple TV Plus’ ‘Pachinko,’ starring Lee Min-ho, sets world premiere date

Published January 27, 2022, 1:00 PM

by Jonathan Hicap

Apple TV Plus has announced the global premiere and unveiled the first look for the highly anticipated drama “Pachinko.”

“Pachinko” will star Soji Arai as Mozasu, Jin Ha as Solomon, Inji Jeong as Yangjin, Minha Kim as teenage Sunja, Lee Min-ho as Hansu, Kaho Minami as Etsuko, Steve Sanghyun Noh as Isak, Anna Sawai as Naomi, Junwoo Han as Yoseb, Jung Eun-chae as Young Kyunghee, Jimmi Simpson as Tom Andrews, Yu-na Jeon as young Sunja, and Oscar best supporting actress Youn Yuh Jung as older Sunja.

Lee Min-ho and Minha Kim in “Pachinko” (Apple TV Plus)

Lee Min-ho in “Pachinko” (Apple TV Plus)

According to Apple TV Plus, “Pachinko” will premiere globally on March 25 and will be told in three languages–Korean, Japanese and English.

It will premiere with the first three episodes followed by new episodes every Friday for a total of eight episodes that will run until April 29. “Pachinko” is based on The New York Times best-selling acclaimed novel by the same name.

“Epic in scope and intimate in tone, the story begins with a forbidden love and crescendos into a sweeping saga that journeys between Korea, Japan and America to tell an unforgettable story of war and peace, love and loss, triumph and reckoning,” according to Apple TV Plus.

The drama is written and executive produced by Soo Hugh, who created the series. Kogonada and Justin Chon are executive producers and directed four episodes each, with Kogonada directing the pilot.

Michael Ellenberg and Lindsey Springer executive produce for Media Res; Theresa Kang-Lowe executive produces for Blue Marble Pictures; and Media Res’ Dani Gorin co-executive produces along with Richard Middleton, David Kim and Sebastian Lee.

“They say there are those projects that come along and change the very core of who you are as a filmmaker and a person. Undoubtedly, ‘Pachinko’ is that project for me,” said Soo Hugh. “Not only is this a story of my forebears, it’s my tribute to them — to all of the Sunjas buried deep in all of our family’s history. It’s been an incredible honor to bring this series to life with this dedicated and gifted cast and crew.”

Oscar best supporting actress Youn Yuh Jung in “Pachinko” (Apple TV Plus)

A scene in “Pachinko” (Apple TV Plus)

During an interview with Esquire Korea last year, Lee Min-ho said when he was filming the series, “I wanted to be true to the character. So I tried to focus on how desperate they were to survive in that period. I wanted to express the man who has desperately survived and met the women he loved. And I really wanted to portray well how one can love one another, reflecting the male image at that era.”

“I hope ‘Pachinko’ can respond to my fans’ expectations,” he said.

Lee Min-ho previously said he auditioned for “Pachinko” but it did not guarantee that he would bag the role.

“Not at all. It’s been more than a decade since I auditioned (for a role), but the situation has changed from then. I thought it would be so embarrassing if I failed the audition, so I was determined to get the role. I worked really hard to prepare for the audition,” he said, according to SBS News.

 
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