By Kim Eun-jung
SEOUL, Jan. 25 (Yonhap) -- South Korean actor-singer Jang Keun-suk is coming back after a five-year hiatus as a lawyer-turned-detective who investigates a mysterious murder case in Coupang Play's new crime thriller series "The Bait."
In the show, Jang plays Goo Do-han, who formerly served as a lawyer for wealthy people and now as a detective who follows a murder case. Lee Elijah plays Cheon Na-yeon, a reporter who teams up with him to uncover the truth.
Heo Sung-tae appears as Noh Sang-cheon, who is named as the main suspect of the murder case although he is known to have died eight years ago after being accused of masterminding a massive fraud case.
Jang, who formerly enjoyed massive popularity in Asia with his roles in rom-com dramas, said he chose the crime thriller after the long break to show his new side as an actor.
"I thought (Goo Do-han) would be a new challenge as it breaks my old, predictable image," Jang said in a press conference to promote the series Wednesday. "I grew a mustache and tried to restrain myself to portray a wild man."
The 36-year-old actor said five years passed too quickly as he completed his mandatory military service from 2018 to 2020 and had a refreshing period afterwards.
"I didn't know the break would take this long. I treasured the script of 'The Bait' to make the time meaningful," he said.
Heo, who played villains in Netflix series "Squid Game" and the Disney+ series "Casino," said he wants to write an "encyclopedia of villains" with his "unforgettable" character in the new work.
"I tried to control my power. I thought acting would be a challenge as it is an epic tale of Noh Sang-cheon," he said.
The first two episodes of "The Bait" will be available on the streaming platform by e-commerce operator Coupang on Friday. The second part will be released in the first half of this year.
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