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South Korean actor Lee Joon-gi will star in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, Lee’s local agency Namoo Actors confirmed on Tuesday after Milla Jovovich‘s Instagram photo with the Asian star went viral over the weekend.
Director W.S. Andersen is said to have reached out to Lee personally via email, said a PR rep for Namoo Actors. The actor is currently taking part in the production that is underway in South Africa. It will mark the 33-year-old’s first Hollywood project.
“The director said in the email that he was impressed by Lee’s action dramas and influence in Asia,” said the rep.
“Working for the last few nights with the incredible 3rd Dan Tae Kwon Do master and actor Joon Gi @actor_jg has been insanely fun and so inspiring. Makes me want to go back to class and brush up on my martial arts skills,” said Jovovich on her Instagram.
Following the post, Sony Pictures’ Screen Gems confirmed on Monday that Lee would be playing Umbrella Corporation’s Commander Lee.
Lee is the latest among a handful of Korean actors to have crossed over to Hollywood, including Lee Byung-hun (Terminator Genisys as well as the RED and G.I. Joe franchises) and Choi Min-sik (Lucy).
Lee rose to stardom through the 2005 Korean box-office hit King and the Clown (the Asian country’s Oscar submission that year, helmed by the director of this year’s entry The Thone). He has since played lead roles in regionally popular TV soaps including several action-packed series. Overseas ventures include the Korea-Japan co-production Virgin Snow and the upcoming Chinese production Begin Again (a.k.a. Under the Sicily Sun).
Meanwhile, the sixth and final installment of the Resident Evil series is slated for release in 2017.
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