The different versions of “Secret Garden” female lead:  Ha Ji Won remains impressive as the blueprint, Baifern Pimchanok adds a different feel to her character 

Each version brings out a different shade, albeit for comedic purpose or not, of the female character. 

Coming out in 2010, “Secret Garden” quickly became a massive hit in Korea, penned by the famous screenwriter Kim Eun Sook. The series tells the soul-swapping incident between the arrogant and good looking Kim Joo Won and the stuntwoman Gil Ra Im that leaves them in many ironic situations. 

secret garden

“Secret garden” hit record-breaking viewership that brought many awards and trophies to the cast and crew of the drama. Hyun Bin also created a “Hyun Bin Syndrome” following his successful portrayal of the character. Apart from the tomboyish, tough-looking female lead of the original work, each adaptation presents a distinct version of the character. 

Ha Ji Won 

secret garden

Ha Ji Won plays Gil Ra Im, the stuntwoman with a tomboy hairstyle, captivates viewers with a natural charisma. With great acting performance and compelling chemistry with her co-star, Ha Ji Won contributed hugely to the outstanding success of the series. Her version of Gil Ra Im is held to be the most memorable to this day. 

Secret Garden-Hyun Bin

Tan Weiwei 

Tan Weiwei

In 2012, a brand new version of “Secret Garden” graced the big screen starring Wallace Chung and Tan Weiwei. While taking after the successful hit, this Chinese film adaptation could not garner similar accomplishment. Wallace Chung could not immerse in his role nor draw the audience’s attention despite his good look while Tan Weiwei was underwhelming. Her image was not polished enough and the acting was too stiff. 


g-dragon secret garden

There exists a “special” parody of “Secret Garden” that stars G-Dragon (BIGBANG) as the female lead. Specifically, he performed Ha Ji Won’s role and brought laughter with his personal reenactment of innocent and helpless expressions. Different from his charismatic stage presence, the parody revealed a rare comedic moment recorded on-screen. His segment with Daesung also became a classic comedy element cherished within the fan community. 

Baifern Pimchanok

Baifern Pimchanok

In 2016, Thailand released their version of “Secret Garden” starring Baifern Pimchanok as the female lead. Her co-star was Ananda Everingham. Setting herself from the strong and tough images of the previous versions, Baifern kept her long hair and feminine image added with a mysterious feel to portray the female character in this version of “Secret Garden.”

Image source: SBS

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