New Journey to the West 2 (Hangul: 신서유기; RR: SinSeoYuGi) is a South Korean travel-reality show that has been broadcast online via Naver TVCast from September 4, 2015. This is the first project from “tvN Go,” a digital-content brand from cable channel tvN.
It stars Lee Seung-gi, Kang Ho-dong, Eun Ji-won, and Lee Su-geun. The four members each take one of the characters from the classic Chinese novel “Journey to the West” as they go on a 5-days and 4 night backpacking trip through Xian, China, to play various games.
- Lee Seung-gi (season 1)
- Kang Ho-dong
- Eun Ji-won
- Lee Su-geun
- Ahn Jae-hyun (season 2)
Lee Seung Gi plays Xuanzang (a Buddhist monk in the novel) who leads and worries constantly about the monsters hyungs (his co-cast members) who don’t listen to him. Lee Soo Geun plays Sun Wukong a monkey character with the greatest sin, Eun Ji Won plays Sha Wujing (a celestial being) who either immature or genius villain, and Kang Ho Dong plays Zhu Bajie (a pig character) with low brain but great strength and appetite.Together, they took a journey to the west (Xi’an, China) while completing various mission to find seven dragon balls which can grant wishes for those who can collect them.
Na Young Suk PD expressed, “The four are too familiar with each other, and they know what each other is thinking just from looking at each other’s eyes. Everyone had a great and fun time during the 5 days four nights trip. We are working hard on the post-production at the moment, so that the viewers can experience the fun that we all had.”
This show reunite four cast members of the golden age of KBS ‘1 Night 2 Days’. On July 16, tvN announced that Na Young Seok PD will show a new form of variety program in fall through internet contents called “New Journey to The West”. The production crew stated, “We invested [in the show] as a new format that will broadcast on the internet instead of TV. Right now, we are considering recruiting Lee Soo Geun, and Eun Ji Won in addition to Kang Ho Dong and Lee Seung Gi. There will be no more additions after four members are confirmed.”
A CJ E&M official told Sports Chosun on July 23, ‘New Journey to the West’ is holding the first meeting of the members. On August 5, a source involved in broadcasting said that Lee Seung Gi, Kang Ho Dong, Lee Soo Geun, Eun Ji Won, and Na Young Suk leave for China on August 6 to begin filming. Which later revealed that they heading to XiAn, a City in China, for 5 days filming.
tvN announced on August 18 that “New Journey to the West” will be released exclusively through PC & mobile Naver TVCast in early September. It marked this show as the first South Korean variety show created by a TV network, tvN, to be broadcast exclusively online.
New Journey to the West production crew and members make their first official appearance through a press conference held at 63 Convention Center on the afternoon of September 1.The press conference go live on Tuesday at 2 p.m. on Naver and V app at the same time.
The show also streamed exclusively on Tencent’s QQ.com in China, simultaneously with its run on South Korean portal website Naver. Seo Jang-Ho, the head of international sales and acquisitions at CJ E&M, said, “We are excited to introduce New Journey to the West to Chinese viewers through Tencent, one of the largest online platforms in the country. As the show is CJ E&M’s highly anticipated digital content of the year, we hope for its successful reception in China.”
In the show press conference, Director Na said that there was no step-by-step casting process. “It all just happened very naturally when Lee Seung-gi mentioned going on a trip with the old members over a casual dinner,” Na explained. “We then talked about filming it, but because it would lack completeness as a TV show, we decided to use the Internet platform.”Na stated that they wanted to make a program that is new in every ways, including genre and format. Providing busy businessmen and students with short break in the midst of their hectic daily routines. The concept about five new clips at once time release, with each clip to be about ten minutes long, make those who can’t afford the time to watch all of the clips in order can just randomly pick whatever looks good for them