The Korea Herald


Joo Won excited to star in antihero drama 'Stealer: The Treasure Keeper'

By Lee Si-jin

Published : April 12, 2023 - 15:26

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Joo Won plays a thief in Joo Won plays a thief in "Stealer: The Treasure Keeper." (tvN)

Actor Joo Won is returning to the small screen for the first time in three years with action-packed comic series “Stealer: The Treasure Keeper.”

The 12-part action drama revolves around Hwang Dae-myung, who lives his life as a Cultural Heritage Administration official during the day and becomes a cultural artifact thief named Skunk at night.

Aware that Skunk steals illegally owned national treasures, the members of Team Karma -- an unofficial heritage repatriation team -- approach Dae-myung, who appears to be close with Skunk.

The story continues as Skunk and Team Karma join hands to pull off a huge heist to retrieve stolen cultural heritage.

Joo Won poses for photos before an online press conference on Tuesday. (tvN) Joo Won poses for photos before an online press conference on Tuesday. (tvN)

“Skunk is not a superhero. It's more like Dae-myung’s hero play, which lacks conventional heroic attributes,” Joo Won said in a press conference Tuesday.

“I have worked in several action films and drama series. But playing Skunk was very difficult," he said. Referring to his role as a Japanese colonial-era hero in KBS' period drama “Gaksital” (2012), he said, "Everything was different from 'Gaksital,' including the mask and the costume.”

“Ranging from caper scenes to comic and action, ‘Stealer: The Treasure Keeper’ has everything to entertain the viewers. I am excited to present interesting stories to the viewers. I hope they enjoy the series as well,” Joo said.

Director Choi Joon-bae added that the series is not about heroes with superpowers. Rather, it presents unpredictable stories of the ordinary people.

“The characters have a strong will and determination to achieve their goals, but they are not almighty. I think these characteristics can make the viewers easily empathize with the unique characters in our series,” the director said.

Though the upcoming show features witty moments and humorous scenes, director Choi emphasized that “Stealer: The Treasure Keeper” seeks to send a strong message as it revolves around South Korea’s cultural heritage.

“The line, ‘a nation that has forgotten its history has no future and a nation that has forgotten its cultural heritage has no past,’ is repeated several times throughout the series. ‘Stealer: The Treasure Keeper’ will be an interesting drama about those who protect what is stolen and those who try to steal what is being protected,” the director explained.

Cable channel tvN’s “Stealer: The Treasure Keeper,” which premiered Wednesday, airs at 10:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Episodes are also available via Tving, Viu and Amazon Prime Video on the same day.