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'Money Game': Idol IU returns to acting, last seen in 2019 K-drama 'Hotel Del Luna'

K-pop idol and actor IU has been focusing on her music career for the last two years with releases like 'Lilac' and 'Pieces'
IU's last K-drama was 'Hotel Del Luna' in 2019 (@dlwlrma/Instagram, tvN/Naver)
IU's last K-drama was 'Hotel Del Luna' in 2019 (@dlwlrma/Instagram, tvN/Naver)

IU aka Lee Ji-eun has long been dubbed the ‘Nation’s sweetheart’ for her 'cute girl' looks, iconic songs and her charm in heart-warming K-dramas. While she debuted in 2008 as a K-pop idol, she has dabbled in everything from acting to hosting TV shows. And she has excelled in every field. She is known as the ‘digital monster’ for often winning music shows despite not performing while the general public also love her for her philanthropic side as evident from the $1.4 million she donated in 2021 itself.

During the year-end award shows like MMA, MAMA, AAA, GDA SMA and Gaon Chart Music Awards of 2021, IU won several awards in the main and grand prize category for her recent releases like ‘Lilac’ and ‘Strawberry Moon’. What is more, it looks like she is returning to acting in 2022 as well. On January 28, 2022, it was reported that IU had been cast in the main role of the upcoming K-drama ‘Money Game’.

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IU’s last K-drama

IU debuted as an actress in 2011 in one of the lead roles of the idol drama ‘Dream High’. She went on to act in popular K-dramas like ‘The Producers’, ‘Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo’ and ‘Persona’. She reached new heights of international fame with the ghost fantasy drama ‘Hotel Del Luna’ in which she plays the fiery Manwol in 2019. She was cast opposite Yeo Jin-goo and 'Sweet Home's Lee Do-hyun while Block B’s P.O was in a supporting role.

The star-studded cast also included IU’s long-time friends – the late idol Sulli doing a cameo along with Kim Soo-hyun of ‘It’s Okay to Not Be Okay’ fame. Following the supernatural show which constantly trends on Netflix with new viewers discovering it anew, fans were eagerly waiting for IU’s next acting project.


What is ‘Money Game’

While IU had a cameo in the film ‘Shades of Heart’ in 2021, but for the last two years, she has been focusing on her music career. But now she is getting back to acting and has already been cast in two films, ‘Broker’ alongside Song Kang-ho and Bae Doona, and Park Seo-joon’s ‘Dream’. Her third acting project of 2022 is the K-drama ‘Money Game’. Based on the Naver webtoon of the same name, it is a suspense thriller where eight participants of a game show must share 44.8 billion won ($36 million) in order to win the game.

It has also roped in ‘Reply 1988’s Ryu Joon-yeol as the male lead opposite IU and Park Hae-joon of ‘The World of the Married’ fame. ‘Money Game’ has also cast writer-actor Park Jung-min known for his lead role in the Netflix original K-drama ‘Hellbound’.