Actor, writer Cha In-pyo's novel selected as required reading at Oxford University

Cha In-pyo, left, with his wife, Shin Ae-ra [SCREEN CAPTURE]

Actor and novelist Cha In-pyo’s novel was selected as required reading for Oxford University students, according to his wife, actor Shin Ae-ra.

"Starting next semester, it will be used as a textbook for Korean Studies and will also be available in all Oxford libraries," Shin said Sunday on Instagram. "What a blessing this is."

The novel selected as required reading is Cha’s 2021 book “Once We Look at the Same Star,” according to the Korean Cultural Centre U.K.

The novel, originally published in 2009 as his first full-length novel “Goodbye Hill," deals with the issue of Korean "comfort women" under Japanese colonial rule. The book was reprinted again with the current title in 2021.

Cha delivered a special lecture about his literary perspective and “Once We Look at the Same Star” as part of the first “Oxford Korean Literature Festival” held in Oxford University on June 28.

The festival held its inaugural event this year and aims to invite notable Korean authors annually to Oxford University to share their literary perspectives. The event is hosted by Professor Jieun Kiaer, whose Korean name is Cho Ji-eun, of Oxford's Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.

There are also plans by Kiaer to translate “Once We Look at the Same Star” into English, German and French, according to the Korean Cultural Centre U.K., which supported the event.

Cha has written three novels: “Today's Forecast” (translated) (2011), “Once We Look at the Same Star” and “Mermaid Hunting” (translated) (2022).

Cha debuted in 1993 in the MBC drama "Han Ji-bong's Three Families." He is known for starring in the MBC drama "Star in My Heart" (1997), SBS drama "Hong Kong Express" (2005) and "Big Thing" (2010). Cha also starred in the comedy film "What Happened to Mr. Cha?" (2021).

Famed music producer and composer Kim Hyung-suk is also set to visit Oxford University to deliver a special lecture about the history and future of K-pop on Thursday.

To find out more about Cha In-pyo, visit Celeb Confirmed!

Update, July 2: The novel selected as required reading was confirmed to be "Once We Look at the Same Star."