Seattle gets a little bit of Seoul through reality show visit
Move over housewives, duck hunters, and hot chefs. There's a new reality show using Seattle for its backdrop and famous actors most Washingtonians won't recognize.
"My mom and her Korean friends are so excited that this cast is here," said Emily Cantrell.
Cantrell is the tourism manager for Visit Seattle. She's also coordinating location shoots for the cast and crew of "I'm Also A Film Director."
Four A-list actors from South Korea are filming their first episodes in the Emerald City's most iconic spots. They're hitting the Space Needle, popular parks, and rocked out on a Ride The Duck tour.
The premise of the program is a top actor gets his first shot at directing three other stars in a short film. The unscripted reality show captures the director figuring out how to shoot on a tiny budget with the limitations of permits. When time was up in one location, the director blew up.
Reality shows are big in Korea and the station airing it is watched in Japan too. But ratings aren't the only reason for the new show.
"Delta is actually the one that helped make this show a reality," said Cantrell. The airline wants this program to take off and promote its new non-stop flight from Seoul to Seattle. Tourism from Korea is up 36 percent in Seattle from 2013 to 2014.
The stars experienced a little drama at the start of their Seattle stay. The main actress, Boyoung Lee, lost her purse and all her credit cards at the airport and then a cast member accidentally elbowed her in the eye on the airport shuttle ride. When Cantrell arrived, she saw the actress with an ice pack and asked what happened. "She just said hospital," Cantrell said.
Sangjin Han is the most famous of the show's actors. He is Korea's version of Hollywood royalty. Han is directing the short film and turning heads. He said he's been recognized in Seattle by Korean, Japanese, and Chinese fans but not Americans.
He said he hopes the project will change that. But Delta is banking on Seattle being the real star of the show.