TM Chapter 44

Chapter 44: Is it a miscasting? Or a divine move? (5)

TL: emptycube


 

The director scratched his half-bald head. His gaze fell on the Cat Guardian Ghost script.

“This project, you said Luck Tosser brought it in, right?”

“Yes. I don’t know where he heard that this project was good, but he brought it in all by himself.”

Said the team 3 leader, smiling brightly.

“Now, really. He keeps switching back and forth between Lucky Charm and Luck Tosser.”

“I’m telling you he has an admirable quality to him when he works.”

Unlike the team 3 leader, whose face was glowing, the team 2 leader, who was sitting on the other side, frowned deeply. He even took deep breaths, as if calming his surging rage, whenever he heard the name ‘Luck Tosser’.

“Well, that’s that. I received a call from the CEO…”

Everyone who had gathered in the room, especially Seo Jijoon, looked towards the director, urging him to continue.

“He said to go on with the contract.”

Seo Jijoon and his manager Lee Bongjoon high-fived each other under the table.

The team 2 leader repeatedly opened and closed his mouth, seemingly unable to accept this, but in the end, he simply sighed. Since the actor himself said he wanted to do it and since the CEO decided as well, nothing would change even if he continued to oppose it.

“Let’s first set the goal to be over 5% viewership ratings. Well. Even if it doesn’t, it won’t be bad for Jijoon’s filmography. You often hear that your acting spectrum is too narrow. Which is why only similar roles are offered to you.”

“That’s right. I’m bored to death of the same dignified roles.”

“You will receive different roles after you do this.”

“That’s when things work out well, if things don’t, then it might only shatter the luxurious image we worked hard to create. Also, if characters become weird because she’s a new writer…”

When the team 2 leader was mumbling in a half-unsatisfied, half-worrying tone,

Someone knocked the door, almost smashing it, before entering. It was Son Chaeyoung with fiery eyes. She gave half-hearted greetings to the director and team leaders then immediately went to Seo Jijoon.

“Is it true you are going to appear on a cable drama in January? In a romantic comedy?”

“News spread quickly. Where did you hear that?”

Seo Jijoon replied while crossing his legs in a relaxed manner.

“Is it true? Are you trying to screw me over? Don’t you know I’m doing a drama then too?”

“What’s wrong with that? It’s not like they air on the same day at the same time anyways.”

“Why doesn’t it matter! If you and I appear at the same time, and even on dramas with similar genres, the company will divide its promotion strategy! It’s already not enough to become a hot topic in the beginning when they only focus their efforts on one!”

“What kind of fresh garbage is this? Are you the only actor in our company?”

“If you were going to do a winter drama, you should have joined my project instead!”

“I’d rather go serve mandatory military service than film a romantic comedy with you.”

When the two actors were growling at each other, Chief Jo, who was Son Chaeyoung’s manager, held her back.

“Chaeyoung, the director’s here, so end it there and sit down. Huh? Sit and talk.”

Son Chaeyoung, who had been fuming, flinched as she turned her head. The director, who was sitting in the seat of honor, was enjoying his milk tea as he watched the two quarrel, even snickering as though he found a dispute at this level adorable.

“Director, I’m serious!”

At Son Chaeyoung’s protest, the director waved his hand with a ‘Whoops’.

“The company will promote the two of you the best we can so don’t worry. No, it’s the three of you.”

He turned towards the team 3 leader.

“You said Songha is confirmed as well, right?”

“Yes. It’s confirmed that Songha will join as well. Now that you mention it, I was on a phone call with the CEO of Pan Production before I got here, and he praised her, saying he was surprised at how good her acting was.”

“Really? Considering that they called a day after her audition, it seems they really got a good impression of her.”

“Who?”

Son Chaeyoung frowned.

“Who’s joining?”

“Lee Songha from Neptune, we originally wanted her to act, but she quit once.”

The team 3 leader glanced at Son Chaeyoung and said,

“That teacher, Shim Jungtaek, is fishy no matter how much I think about it. To say such harsh words to someone who’s good at acting… If it wasn’t for Luck Tosser seeing her potential, persuading her and bringing over a drama, we would have buried her talent without knowing.”

“Tsk, it looks like we can’t entrust any of our recruits to that man. You keep looking into it.”

Listening to their conversation, Son Chaeyoung said in a calmer tone than before,

“Why do you only blame teacher? She might have been bad at acting in front of him.”

“It’s no use if he grills them so much that they get traumatized.”

“Teacher probably did it for her sake. How many times must he have seen people mess up their lives by pursuing acting even though they are bad at it? He probably thought that if they are at the level where they should just give up, then they should as early as possible.”

When he heard Son Chaeyoung continuously take the acting teacher’s side, the team 3 leader raised his eyebrows.

And, on the other side, the team 2 leader had an uncomfortable expression.

 

After the meeting ended, the team 2 leader grabbed Son Chaeyoung, who was about to leave.

He looked around and carefully asked,

“Chaeyoung. Don’t tell me you got the teacher to…”

“No.”

Son Chaeyoung cut him off. Then she said in a slightly rigid expression,

“I don’t do that anymore. I only made that mistake once in the past because things weren’t working out and I was so uneasy. Team leader knows as well. That I couldn’t even sleep without sleeping pills that time.”

“Of course, I know. That was why I covered it up and moved on. But this time…”

“I really didn’t do it. That was so long ago.”

“Are you sure?”

“I swear on it. I haven’t even seen that Lee Songha or whatever’s face.”

Son Chaeyoung smiled as she shook her head. The team 2 leader finally let out a sigh.

“Okay. I only asked out of concern.”

“You don’t have to worry.”

Son Chaeyoung crossed her arms and changed the topic.

“But the person who brought that cable drama, is he that person from before? The tall Neptune manager who was such a turn-off?”

“Yeah. That guy.”

The team 2 leader nodded his head with a troubled expression.

“Seo Jijoon got the script because of him… Haa, I don’t know why this guy, who hasn’t even been in the company for long, is constantly being an eyesore.”

“He’s beginning to be an eyesore to me too.”

“You’re busy preparing for your drama so don’t worry about useless things. I’m already waiting for a chance to take him down a notch.”

Son Chaeyoung twisted her red lips.

“He left pouring cold water on my project, but could only grab a cable drama, from a new writer to boot… Now, really. What insight. I’m curious what viewership ratings that drama will get now.”

*

Thud.

When I told Lee Songha the news confirming she was cast for the role, she dropped the ice cream she was eating. See as she dropped something she was eating, this meant she was extremely surprised. Worried she might pick it back up, I threw out the ice cream and turned around to see Lee Songha still standing there with a blank expression.

The other girls were creating a fuss in her stead.

“Really?! When she had her audition yesterday? Are results normally this quick?”

“It looks like the decision was quick because the production, the writer, and the director really liked her.”

“Wonderful!”

So excited that she didn’t know what to do, Im Seoyoung mercilessly patted Lee Songha’s shoulders and back.

“Lee Songha! They said you’ve been cast for the drama! Oppa, then is she going to be an actress?”

“I guess?”

“Oh my god! It’s not some extra, but an actual supporting role! When I stole a glance through the script, there were a lot of lines as well, meaning she must have tons of air time! What if she gets all sorts of product placement offers and stuff?!”

“Calm down, dummy. If someone saw, they’d think you were the one who was cast.”

LJ, who scolded her out of habit, poked Lee Songha’s side.

“Congratulations, Lee Songha. But I knew you’d get in.”

Lee Taehee stroked Lee Songha’s head and said,

“How great, Songha. Since you will be the new actress Lee Songha and not Neptune’s Lee Songha over there, don’t feel any pressure and try it out.”

Not only the girls, but Kim Hyunjo and the team 3 leader took turns congratulating her through the phone. Only afterwards did it seem like Lee Songha was regaining her senses. She came up to me with steady steps and asked,

“… Did I really get in?”

I grinned and handed her a new ice cream.

“I don’t know about the others, but why are you so surprised? You already heard that you were almost confirmed after the audition yesterday.”

“Still… I didn’t think I would get it so easily.”

“Easily, my ass. You were already good at acting, but you worked hard as you analyzed the script and even practiced so much by looking up cat videos on the internet. You were just rewarded for your efforts.”

“Still, up until now…”

Lee Songha shut her lips mid-mumble.

Well, since there were probably more things that didn’t work out than did through her efforts up until now.

While it was certain she wasn’t weak-minded or easily intimidated, her reaction was probably because she had heard that she couldn’t do it, that she wasn’t good at it, or that she fell behind to the point they ringed in her ears.

However, that would all end now.

Since she would hear how great she is and how she is exploding with talent more often than that she’s bad or that she’s falling behind.

“Didn’t I say it? That you will hear ‘Rediscovery of Lee Songha’ after you do one drama. Wait and see.”

After blinking her eyes twice, her lips formed a bright smile.

“Thank you. It’s all because of oppa.”

“Uh…”

It had been a long time since I’d seen her smile so brightly, no, did I even see it before?

My mind halted for a moment, but LJ suddenly appeared behind Lee Songha.

“I know, right?”

LJ crossed her arms and examined me at different angles.

“Was that prediction about how there would be a great fortune at the end of the year true? That a snake will bring fortune.”

She mumbled profoundly before rubbing her hands together in a circular motion.

“Is this how you do it?”

“What are you trying to do?”

“Making a wish just in case. I’m asking to win the lottery.”

“I! I want to have a permanent spot in an outdoor entertainment show!”

Im Seoyoung quickly ran next to LJ and joined her.

“Lee Songha! Taehee unni! Hurry and pray to the Lucky Snake Oppa!”

Lucky Snake…

While I was trying to regain my senses after that shock, Lee Songha and Lee Taehee each replied,

“I hope I can continue to be busy next year.”

“Hmm… Then I want a Neptune concert.”

“I take the Neptune concert and raise it to a world concert.”{1}

LJ added. Lastly, Im Seoyoung suddenly raised her hand.

“Before that, 1st in a music broadcast!”

I quickly grabbed Im Seoyoung’s shoulders.

“Okay. I received your wish.”

“Yeah! Mine’s been received!”

Im Seoyoung happily skipped around the living room. It looked like she wasn’t in her right mind after she heard that Lee Songha had been cast. I clicked my tongue and turned around, but LJ looked at me like she was looking at some pitiful guy.

“What?”

“I started this as a joke.”

“I’m serious.”

“At any rate, oppa has a lot of strange qualities as well.”

She said as she grinned.

Im Seoyoung, who had been running about the living room, unable to calm her excitement, suddenly stopped. Then she said with shining eyes,

“We’re doing Next K-Star, and Lee Songha’s filming a drama… I get the feeling that we will be completely different next year.”

 

A few days later, an article confirming that Seo Jijoon had been cast for TVL’s new project for January, Cat Guardian Ghost, appeared on the front page.

The fact that Seo Jijoon, who had only done cold, elitist roles until now, was going to appear on a sweet romantic comedy became a hot topic, and the drama’s title was trending on top searches. This was definitely effective in promoting the drama.

Starting with Seo Jijoon, the female lead and other supporting and minor roles were quickly cast as well.

The fact that Lee Songha was cast wasn’t widely promoted. Since there would be a lot of negative reactions, saying that she only got in because she was in the same company as Seo Jijoon, we decided to see the public’s reaction of Next K-Star before determining the scale and direction of promoting her.

That was how every day passed without any time to rest.

There were a few more recordings of Next K-Star, and fortunately, the girls continued to receive compliments from the judges because they worked hard like an untiring runaway engine{2}.

Of course, we couldn’t relax because we wouldn’t know how it would be shown until we saw the edited version.

Lee Songha reduced her already insufficient sleep time. She was constantly caught up with practicing for the mission with her members, her own addition training, as well as analyzing and reading the script. Although we found a new acting teacher, she always did her readings with me.

I was worried she might tire, but it looked like my worries were unfounded. She was absorbed in acting every day, and the more she did, the livelier she seemed to get as if she was a well-watered sprout.

Mid-November.

People put away their thin jackets and took out their thick padded coats. The stalls on the streets were filled with scarves and wool hats, piercing wind began to blow between the bare trees on the streets, and the Cat Guardian Ghost’s first reading would be in a few days…

Then, the day had finally arrived.

November 20. 10 p.m.

There was now 1 hour before Next K-Star aired for the first time.

 


{1} Think poker. Call, Raise, etc.

{2} This is a phenomenon where an engine accelerates due to drawing fuel from an unintended source.

 

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Comments 10

  1. |  THANKS FOR THE CHAPTER!!!
    | ̄””‘、
    |ω` |
    ⊂  ;゙ Can’t wait for the Cat Guardian airing  
    |   / Hahaha the face of that cocky actress
    |U”” Lucky tosser is his new name lol

  2. thanks for the chapter:)
    i guess i know where this is going now^^
    we got antagonists and allies of the mc well defined now.
    the main bad guy is probably the other manager of neptune,”dark inside” guy…well maybe he will be a friend later but this novel lack strong and durable antagonists,most of them will be lowed by the next few events(next K-star,the drama,sung dowon etc…)
    maybe we will have new strong characters coming from now on,how many chapter remaining in the raws?

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