2PM's Nichkhun. Photo courtesy of Allkop.com.
Distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment, the third rendition of Ouran High School Host Club will now feature Nichkhun, a member of Korean boy-band 2PM. JYP Entertainment announced on November 13 that Nichkhun will play the role of Lawrence, the president of a Singaporean corporation. Lawrence's younger sister Michelle will be played by AKB48's Shinoda Mariko, and the two will star alongside lead actress Kawaguchi Haruna and actor Yamamoto Yusuke, who both play Haruhi Fujioka and Tamaki Suoh, respectively.
The role will not only be Nichkhun's first time starring in a Japanese movie, but it is also the debut for any member of 2PM in a Japanese film.
"We've been watching Nichkhun and thought he had potentials as an actor," the film company told JYP Entertainment. "Lawrence must be good at English, always confident and professional, and also gentle at the same time. Nichkhun had the exactly same quality as the character and that's why we cast him."
Nichkhun, who is Thai Chinese, is able to speak English and Thai, having been born in California, and studied in Thailand, New Zealand, and Rancho Cucamonga. He became a badminton coach at Rosemead High School and was then scouted by Park Jin-young at the Korean Music Festival in Los Angeles.
The movie will be based on Hatori Bisco's manga, Ouran High School Host Club, which was adapted into a TV animation in 2006 and a live-action drama this past summer. The plot revolves around a student-run host club at Ouran Academy, a prestigious high school. The main character Haruhi, is a scholarship female student who was originally mistaken as a male and taken in as a host to cover her debts to the club (after breaking an expensive vase).
"I'm very excited & nervous for my first movie debut EVER in "Ouran High School Host Club," Nichkhun tweeted on Monday. "All the casts were very generous and helpful~=]."
According to Soompi, the film is scheduled for release on March 17, 2012.