Production members of an upcoming celebrity fashion survival program, "Fashion King Korea," considered recruiting actors Lee Min-ho and Kim Soo-hyun due to their popularity in China, though neither was cast.
The third season of the program, entitled "Fashion King - Box of Secrets," will see 240 fashion stylists and celebrities -- half from Korea, half from China -- competing in nine rounds of fashion challenges.
"The program requires participants to design and make distinctive clothing, which takes up a lot of time," said a staff member to a local media outlet earlier this month.
"Kim Soo-hyun and Lee Min-ho are popular in China ... but realistically speaking, both were too busy to be cast on the program," the staff member said.
The fashion survival program is being jointly produced by Korean broadcaster SBS and a Chinese online video platform, Youku Tudou.
The weekly program will see "top fashion designers and celebrities" from both countries collaborate on fashion projects over an intensive 10-week season.
"It will be exciting to see the contest between the two countries," said the staff member. "Since it is a fashion program being jointly produced (by Korea and China), we're paying close attention to high viewer ratings and responses. Consequently, we're focusing on making the series elaborate with strong and varied fashion designs."
Korean celebrities on the show include singers Kim Jong-kook, Seo In-young, actress Yoo In-na and K-pop singer Lee Jung-shin from boy group CNBLUE.
"Fashion King - Box of Secrets" begins airing Saturday at 10 p.m.
By Yoon Sarah (firstname.lastname@example.org)