Deokhyeongju (2016) Script


This film is inspired by the life of YI Deok-hye, the last imperial princess of the Korean Empire.

Incidents and persons portrayed do not reflect historical facts.


PARK HAE-IL Morning, sir. Morning.


YOON JEA-MOON Morning, Chief.

RA Ml-RAN I haven't seen your stories lately. Check this out.

Yes, sir.

CHUNG SANG-HUN Thank you, sir!

The new administration announced plans for talk with Japan...

Hey, Jang-han.

You've got a call from Japan.

Put him on.

KIM speaking.

We found him! We found Prince Yeong!

Are you there?

Where is he now?

I'll call you back.

They found him?

That's wonderful!

You should go instead of me.


You owe me a drink!

My baby.

This new year will bring only happiness. Gojong, the first emperor of the Korean Empire Yes, Your Majesty.

I'll take the picture on 3.

That's 1, that's 2, ...and 3.

Deoksu Palace, 1919 Your Highness!

Rumor that you denied the Korea-Japan annexation has reached the Japanese emperor.


I'll arrange for your visit to Japan.

To kneel before the Japanese emperor? And you call yourself my servant?

I now serve the Heavenly Emperor of Japan. YI Wan-yong, Deputy Director-general of the colonial government I now serve the Heavenly Emperor of Japan.

I've never acknowledged the Korea-Japan annexation.

Consider the good of this country and its people!

Korea will prosper under the Japanese rule!

Indeed, you've all prospered.

You were awarded 150,000 and you, 100,000 by the Japanese!

You must be one of the richest men in Korea!

To know nothing but money is one thing, but to sell your country for it is another!

Your names will go down in history forever!


No, Your Highness!

Father, hide me!

Come here, baby.

You dispatched a secret agent to the Paris Peace Conference.

That was foolish. You should apologize to the emperor.

I'll die before I do that.

Step aside, impertinent scoundrel!

Yeah! Step aside.

You leave for Shanghai tonight?


Yes, Your Majesty.

I'll inform them of your determined will.

Take prudence as this is the last chance.


Did your nephew come with you?

Yes, Your Majesty.

Bring him in.

Come closer.

You're a good-looking young man.

Who is he?

'Jang' as in Letter, and 'Han' as in Country.

My name is KIM Jang-han.

'Jang' as in Letter, 'Han' as in Country.

Your name is Jang-han?

Yes, Your Majesty.

You are the son of General KIM of the Liberation Army in Manchuria.

I'm sorry to hear about your father's passing.

My uncle has looked after me like his own.

Why did you decline my offer to be my son-in-law?

I wish to devote myself to the independence movement like my father.

I'm planning to defect to Shanghai.

The world will learn of Japan's tyranny, but if the attempt ends in failure, I intend to protect the princess from the Japanese.

You are still at a tender age, but I'll find an auspicious date for you and Deok-hye to marry.

Your Majesty, persimmon punch is served.

Bring it in.


Look, Father!

Look at the painting I made.

What are you doing on the floor? Don't come near me.




What's the matter?

What's the matter, father?

My baby...

What's wrong?

Wake up, father!

Father! Father!


What's wrong?

Wake up, father!

Father! Father!

Gojong's funeral was conducted in accordance with Japanese customs.

Suspecting assassination by poison, the public reacted with nationwide protests against the Japanese colonial rule.


Changdeok Palace, 1925

Your Highness!

Come in.

Mr. Jang-han is here to see you.

Well, hello.

Good day, Your Highness.

I haven't heard from you in so long, I thought you'd forgotten about me.

Do you want to try?

This is a song I wrote called 'Mouse.'

Just follow me.

You play well.

Counselor HAN sent this for you to wear tomorrow.

What should we do?

Shall I burn it?


We'll wear it.

It's the princess!

Your Highness!


Good morning.

This way, please.

This is really uncomfortable. It's like wearing a straw mat.

This will be over soon.

Stop taking pictures!

Your Highness, what do you think you are doing?

Is something wrong?

Do you know who is here with us today?

Did you intend for a princess of the Korean Empire to wear a kimono?

You stupid woman!

Doesn't she look pretty?

Let's go, Bok-sun.


Don't I look pretty?

Why can't we take pictures?

Your Highness!

Thank you.

You all know the song that Her Highness wrote, right?


...3, 4!


Hey, little mouse!

Little mouse! How cute...


You said this would be great for promoting Japanization.

Yet you let that girl make a fool of us!

I'm sorry.

Public appeal is rising for the princess, sir.

She's a critical threat.

Good news from the Imperial House.

Her Highness has officially been accepted into Japanese royalty.


Congratulations, Deok-hye!

All thanks to you, Counselor HAN.

I'll make arrangements for her studies in Japan.

She is now a part of the Japanese Empire's royalty.

She must receive her education at the royal school.

Your Majesty, the princess must stay in Korea.

She is engaged to the man Gojong arranged for her.

Lady YANG, this is no place for you to intervene.

Her marriage is a matter that will be overseen by the colonial government.

What are your thoughts, Deok-hye?

You cannot allow this to happen!

Your Majesty.

Escort her out! Prince Imperial Yeong was taken to Japan too, and never came back!

It's not education! They're taking her hostage!

Take heed, Your Majesty! Please protect her!

Counselor HAN!

You must have lost your mind.

I won't go.

But don't you care what happens to Lady YANG?

What are you saying?

Lady YANG's safety cannot be guaranteed.

Are you admitting to poisoning my father?

Your father passed away from illness.

It's an order from the Imperial House.

If you refuse, it could threaten the very existence of the YI Dynasty.

I'll send a new kimono.

Don't be foolish this time.

Did you know I used to be responsible for washing the King's face?

Mother, I want to do something for you, and you can't decline.

I wanted to wash your feet.

Can't you tell them again that you won't go?

I'll return as soon as I finish my studies.

You must come back, no matter what.

I promise I will.

Mother, please call me Deok-hye.


Let me hear you call me by name. Just once.

Carry this flask with you at all times.

Take extra caution even when you drink a simple cup of water.

Remember how your father passed away.

Yes, mother.

I will return soon.

Your Highness!

Haneda International Airport Japan, 1961

Over here!


How long has it been?

30 years exactly.


And we meet again in Japan.

Let's go.

This way.

YI Bang-ja (Nashimotonomiya Masako) Wife of Prince Yeong After the war, the Korean government confiscated all of our estate.

Life has become very hard ever since.

His Majesty has always missed his country.

I learnt recently of the princess' disappearance.

Do you know of her whereabouts?

His Majesty avoided talking about her.

He feared she'd be reduced to a laughing matter.

He used to send money to her every month but kept it a secret, even from me.

Please find her!

Akasaka Hotel Prince Imperial Yeong's former residence

Do you have a reservation, sir?

Is it okay if I just look around?

Of course.

Thank you.

Second Lieutenant Kazuma Eito of the Imperial Army reporting.

Prince Imperial Yeong, son of Gojong We've been expecting you.

This is my newly appointed aide.


This is Princess Deok-hye.

It's an honor to meet you.

And this is my wife.

I'm Masako. It's a pleasure to meet you.

You must be that Korean officer who graduated second in his class.

I am, sir.

I'm HAN Taek-su, the minister of the Office of YI Dynasty.

Such a pity.

If you were Japanese, you could've graduated summa cum laude.

My loyalty to the emperor isn't any less than my peers.

Let's have dinner.

I'll prepare tea as an aperitif.

Your Highness!

It's Jang-han.

What are you doing here?

You look dashing in a Japanese military uniform.

I prepared sashimi especially for you, Minister.

I hope you enjoy it.

Thank you, Your Highness.

This is amazing.

How come you aren't eating?

I still haven't gotten used to raw food.

It's ridiculous that a soldier of the great Japanese Empire cannot eat this.

You should try one.

You'll like it, eventually.


It's delicious, ma'am.

I'm glad to hear it.

Maybe I'll grow to like it like you do, Minister.

Her Highness still can't eat it.

Why is my return to Korea being delayed?

I finished school. Now, you should keep your promise.

Deok-hye, let's talk about it later.

'One Country!'

Korea and Japan are one now.

So, what's the point in going back?

I'll ask the Imperial House to find a suitable match for you.

There is no match for me here.

May I be excused? I am not feeling well.

Please have some.

Princess Consort prepared this for you.

Please have some.

I miss Korean food more than ever tonight.

Stay strong, miss. We'll be going home soon, and when we get there, I'll make hot kimchi stew for you.

Prince YI Wu, grandson of Gojong

Long time, no see, auntie.

I thought you were in Shanghai.

I got here a few days ago.

How are you?

How can I be?

I'm counting the days until I can go home.

Then let's go. Let me take you to Korea.

There you are.

Is everyone here? Yes.

Please come in.

Sorry I'm late.

Good evening!

Did you have a safe trip?

Thanks to you.

Great job.

This way, Your Highness.

This way.

Attention, please!

This is my aunt, Her Royal Highness Princess Deok-hye.


We're students from Korea.

Welcome. Great to have you.

It's nice to meet you all. I'm YI Deok-hye.

Since we have everyone, we'll start the meeting.

I visited the factories.

Daito Industry Co. increases intake of Korean workers The living conditions of the Korean workers are much worse than was reported in the newspapers.

They are kept in camps.

Even young children are forced into labor!

Many of them lose their fingers to machinery.

I even heard that the Japanese managers sometimes play with the cut fingers!

These workers are being treated like slaves!

Let's discuss how we can help our fellow Koreans.

You're here.

Jang-han, is something wrong?

The police are heading this way.

They must've somehow obtained intel.

The police are here!

Meeting's over!

Get the Princess out of here. I'll buy us some time.

Comrade KIM!

Come on, hurry.

Come with me, miss.

Open this door!

Just a minute!

That way!

I'm sorry.

I was mistaken about you. I'm sorry about my behavior before.

Maybe you need to continue mistaking.

Do you ever receive any news from Korea?

Only what I read in the Japanese papers.

I've stopped getting letters from my mother altogether.

Somebody must be intercepting them.

Let me see if there's anything I can do.

Unexpectedly, I seem to have someone on my side.

I'll be counting on you, Jang-han.

Your Highness, we're planning to defect Prince Yeong to Shanghai.

You should join him.

You must come back, no matter what.

Hi there!

I'll show you to your reserved table.

I'll take it from here.

This is Army General Yoshida Tadao.

On the left is Watabe Makoto, who will be the next Prime Minister.

They are both expected to attend the ceremony.

The key is getting fail proof explosives.

I'll make sure of that.

Why is the prince still undecided about asylum?

Because of his wife.

We can't take her. She is a member of the Japanese royal family.

I believe she's currently carrying a royal heir.

This is disastrous.

They're looking for a suitable consort for him in Shanghai.

That's ridiculous!

It's for the legitimacy of the Korean Empire.

His Majesty will never leave without her.

Commander, there's no other way.

You must convince the Provisional Government.


This mission is sure to succeed.

I can already picture the day we reclaim our independence.

We have a guest.

He's from the Shanghai Provisional Government.

Japan is farther away than I thought.

Here we are.

Your Majesty.

I'm going back to Korea.

But the people need you in Shanghai.

I miss my mother so much.

I understand.

Jang-han, I have a favor to ask.

Ask away.

I'd like to establish a Korean school for the workers' children.

I felt ashamed of the royal family after meeting the students, so I want to help however I can.

Hello, Your Highness!

You're so pretty!

You got the wrong person! She's not the princess.

Over there!

Hello, everyone.

Your Highness!

I appreciate all your hard work.

You thought I was the princess?

Does 'Bok' mean luck in your name?

So does mine.

Here, take one.

How old are you?


So, you're older than me.

School for Koreans in Japan

Okay, here we go!

Who died, guys? Come on, smile!

Press this at 3.

Ready? 1-2-3!

Please forgive my rudeness for coming into your room.


Your Highness, I hope this letter reaches you safely through Mr. Jang-han.

I heard the wretches have been stealing the letters.

How difficult life in Japan must be for you!

Worries keep me awake at night.

As time goes by, I miss you even more.

Please come home and protect the royal family.

Keep healthy, wherever you are.

It's nice to hear Korean music in a place like this.

Thank you for everything.

I will never forget your kindness.

Stay strong, Your Highness.

I'll come back.

That's alright.

I made this especially for you.

Oops, splash!

'Kiss Me, Fire!'

She can't drink.

Who says?

I know how to drink.

Go easy, it's strong.

That's really strong...

It's delicious! Can I get another one?

How about a Margarita?

A mild one. Mild?

Make it strong. Strong?

Call me when you decide.

This is beautiful. I'm so happy that I could die!

I will get you a brand new one next time.

Isn't it a little too tight?

Not at all! It's a perfect fit.

Can you make some hangover soup? I had too much to drink last night.

Yes, miss.

Invite Mr. Jang-han too.



Uh... sure.

I need a word with the Princess in private.

Leave us.

It's alright. You can go.


What is it that you want?

There's been an uprising among the Korean workers at Daito Industry.

I think they could use a word of encouragement from the princess.

You want me to read this in front of workers drafted by force?

Drafted by force?

They all came voluntarily.

I cannot do it.

It's a request from the Imperial House.

Be precise. Is it a request or a command?

If you reject a polite request, then it becomes a command.

I won't do it.

If you do the speech, I'll let you visit Korea.

Your Highness, you must not do this.

This pro-Japanese speech will crush everything you've fought for!

Do you think I don't know that?

Do not forget that you're the last pride of the Korean Empire!

Before I am an imperial princess, I'm a daughter to a sick mother.

Your Highness...

I'm tired. Please leave.

Next, we'll have a speech dedicated to the Korean workers, who have been working diligently for the Empire of Japan.

Please welcome, Miss YI Deok-hye,

My fellow countrymen, who came from afar to reach the great Japanese country, we, the citizens of Korea, must consider what an incredible honor it is to contribute to the building of a thriving East Asia...

Many of them lose their fingers to machinery.

They are kept in camps.

Even young children are forced into labor.

These workers are being treated like slaves.

My fellow countrymen, I'm YI Deok-hye, Princess of the Korean Empire.

What is she saying?

She's... just explaining in Korean. Standing here today, with nothing to offer for your suffering and pain, I'm greatly ashamed.

How many hardships you suffer!

But please do not forget that we have a home that awaits our return.

Never lose hope, for the sake of our families, who wait for us with all their hearts, even at this very moment.

Never give up until the end.

Spring will come again to the fields stolen from us.


Crossing over Arirang Pass

Send us back to Korea!

We want to go back!

I'm terribly sorry for this, sir!

We want to go back!

Please stay strong!

Take us with you!

I'll escort the Princess.

Yes, sir.

Let's go, miss.

Come here!

How dare you!

Don't lay your filthy hands on her!

I'll rip you to pieces!

Get off of me!

Are you crazy?


Back off! Minister!

There are too many eyes watching.

Your Highness!

Are you okay?

HAN's conduct is growing more heinous by the day.

He even placed soldiers inside his residence, claiming security concerns.

Did he get wind of our plan?

It's for closer surveillance of the princess.

That's concerning.

I say we take him out.

Who is it?

Your Highness!

Can't you sleep, miss?

Don't worry too much.

She'll get better soon.


Yes, miss.

I'm sorry.

I couldn't have managed without you.

My poor Princess...

Stay strong.

I'll always be by your side until the end.

You two were here together?

Take her away!

Yes, sir.

Don't touch me!

What are you doing?

I have an order to send Bok-sun back to Korea.

Who gave such an order?

What are you waiting for?


Your Highness!


Step aside! How dare you stop me?


Your Highness!


Subdue the prisoner!


Stand up!

Stop! Please stop!

Bok-sun, I'll look into this. Go with HAN for now.

Tell them to stop!


I said go with them!

It's an order. Will you disobey me?

Please always be healthy, Your Highness.

I will. Now, go on.

I promise, when I return to Korea, I will find you.

Yes, Your Highness.

I promise you this.

You'll never set foot in Korea again.

It's Jang-han.

Come in.

I'll risk going to Korea.

I'm going to see my mother. I'll smuggle myself if I have to.

News arrived from Korea.

About Bok-sun?

Lady YANG passed away.

When did this happen?

Yesterday at 2.

Was anyone with her when she passed?

SO Takeyuki, the Count of Tsushima.

He's an elite graduate of Tokyo University.

But Deok-hye is still in mourning.

Besides, I'm planning to find a Korean husband for her.

If you insist.

Your Majesty, it's a match proposed by the Imperial House.

I'll go with my brother to Shanghai.

I want to do what I can for Korea's independence.

The Provisional Government will be thrilled by the news.

Has my brother made up his mind?

Not yet.

I'll convince him.


That is ridiculous! What will you do there?

Can they offer us money?

That's no way to speak, as a member of the royal family.

A member of the royal family can starve too.

A member of the royal family can starve too. YI Keon, grandson of Gojong Wherever we go, we will live better than we are now.

Am I wrong, aunt?

We're leaving because we don't want to live like this.


It's you.

His Majesty went to bed early tonight.

Is he not feeling well?

May I have a word with you, in private?

One day, when Japan perishes and Korea regains independence, what can we say about our part in the fight?

You must go.

When Japan perishes? I was never part of this conversation!

I aspired to become a soldier when I was younger.

If the annexation happened 10 years sooner, I would've joined the military academy.

Do you want to try it on?

No, I...

If I'd gone to the academy like you, how do you think I would've done?

Top of the class, sir.

Call me brother from now on.


We can't let them use us as their puppets anymore.

If we think only about ourselves again, our people will never forgive us.

Your Majesty, you must go.

The ceremony that will take place in Tokyo will be attended by all of our targets.

The operation will commence at 1 pm, which is when the bomb will go off.

A bomb? Is that really necessary?

It's to draw the attention of the world powers.

If you defect at the same time as we attack Japan's heart, the world will know that the annexation was not voluntary.

We must escape the territory in the next 6 hours.

Even if they find out, commencing a search will be difficult after sundown.

After changing into disguises at point 1, you'll be transferred into a cargo truck at point 2, which will be loaded onto a cargo ship.

For security reasons, we decided to keep it a secret from Princess Consort until the day of the operation.

Will that be okay?

If she knows about it, she's likely to refuse.

But if you tell her I left, she'll definitely follow.

The surveillance on you is very tight.

Come to point 1 with Princess Consort on time.

HAN will be the first to notice our absence.

We must take him out in order to buy us more time.

Can we count on the bomb?

Don't worry. Why else would I be here?

Rest assured, I'm not gonna die in vain.

I'm sorry I can't be there for this operation.

You have an even greater mission at hand.

I'll see you in Shanghai.

Good luck to everyone.

To the independence of Korea.

To independence!

He's waiting for you.

Delighted to meet you again.


It's an honor to meet you.

I'm SO Takeyuki.

You're taller than I thought.

Thank you for giving us the time.

Mic test - 1, 2, 3.

Mic test - 1, 2, 3.

After inspection, please take your seats.

You look dashing!


The suit becomes you.

That's very kind.

Thank you, ma'am.

The ceremony will commence soon.

I repeat, ladies and gentlemen,

Did you have breakfast?

So much so I can die a happy man.

What are you doing here?

Good morning, Minister.

This is my cousin from Tokyo.

He wanted so much to see the ceremony.

Is that right?

Loyalty towards the emperor extends to your entire family.

I've heard many good things about you.

The ceremony will start soon.

The dress is ready.

How beautiful!

It will look lovely on you.

Do you mind helping me with this?

Of course.

Please welcome to the podium, Duke Watabe Makoto from the Committee of Nobility, and War Minister Yoshida Tadao!

Please be seated.


He would've never kept this from me.

Where is he now?

He's already executing the plan.

Is everything alright?

Yes, I'm fine.

Are you unwell?

Just a moment.

Today is a very important day in our history because today we celebrate the coronation of our first Heavenly Emperor.

Next, we'll award the Order of the Golden Kite.

We wish to celebrate with all citizens...

Come on, hurry...

We have no time.

Your hesitation could put him in danger.

Let us give three cheers for His Majesty, the Emperor.

Long live our Emperor!

Long live our Emperor!

Where's my wife and Deok-hye?

They are on their way. Please change into the disguise.

The size of the explosion guarantees it was a success.

Who are you?

To the independence of Korea...

HAN is alive.

Road blocks are being set up all along the route to the coast.

You must hurry!

We'll have them join us at point 2.

Your Majesty, I'll bring Princess Consort and Deok-hye.

We must make haste.

Who are you?

You can't go in there!

How could they...

We located the whereabouts of Prince Yeong and his wife.

We should hurry!

Something must've happened.


All routes to the coast are being shut down.

You must hurry!

Your Majesty, please get on the truck.

But my wife and Deok-hye aren't here yet.

There is no time for delay.

Your Majesty!

Are you okay?

Cover me!

You must leave now.

Your Majesty!

This is your ID.

Your fake ID, ma'am.

Keep it with you at all times.

You must think about the greater cause.

This is the last chance at reviving the Korean royal family!

My wife and Deok-hye still haven't arrived.

I'm not going anywhere without them!

You should leave now!

They're closing in on us. Hurry!


We're aborting the mission.

Inform Jang-han that we're not coming to point 2.

But Commander!

That's an order!

Tell them you were kidnapped at the ceremony.

I'll see Korea's independence in the next life.


This way!

Let's just go!

I understand... Take care of yourself.

What happened?

Bok-dong, find a boat.

We'll meet in two days, on the beach by the safe house.

A boat?

The operation failed.

Is His Majesty safe?

Yes, ma'am.

Your Highness, you must defect.

Let's go.

I'll stay here.

Get inside!

Take care of yourself.

Please look after my brother.

Prince Yeong is on his way.

His wife and Deok-hye are inside the building.

Seal off the area.

Check for other exits!

It's Princess Consort.

Where is she?

Sir! This way.

This way.


There seems to be no escape route.

You two go on. I'll find the boat.

See you in two days.

Take care.

You too, Your Highness. Please be safe.

KIM Jang-han, you bastard!

Kill them!

Are you hurt?

I'm alright.

Independence army safe house Shizuoka Prefecture

Will you help me?

Pour some antiseptic...

and hemostatic.

Hang in there.

Jang-han, wake up!

Stay with me!

How are you feeling?

I'm better. Give that to me.

I'll do it. I found some potatoes.

It's cold. Let me do it.

You rest. I'll take care of it.

It's delicious.

We used to drink this to keep ourselves warm.

It sure seems to help.

I'm sorry for putting you through this trouble.

That's alright. I'm managing.

The boat will arrive by tomorrow at noon.

Fujiwara Miyuki. It means 'Beautiful Happiness'.

I made that up with hopes your life will be filled with happiness.

When I get to Shanghai, I want to teach Korean to children.

Your Highness, have you ever tasted five-spice steamed pork?

I'll take you out to a good place in Shanghai.

Thank you.

Fortunately, there were 3 potatoes left.

We have enough to share with Bok-dong.

Just a minute, Your Highness.

The sea breeze is cold.

Cease fire!

Stay down, miss!


You should go on your own from here.

Follow this passage to the forest.

At the end of the forest is the beach.

Hide yourself until the boat arrives.

No! I won't go without you.

I need to hold them off.

No matter what happens, don't look back. Just run straight ahead!

Don't worry. Give me 10 minutes.

I'll come find you in 10 minutes.

I will find you and protect you. I promise!



Move in.

Over there.


Over here.




I'm here!

Your Highness!

Your Highness!




Please, no...



Missing YI Deok-hye I thought you got killed back then.

I was dragged to the battlefield as cannon fodder.

That's where I saw Korea's liberation.

I'm sorry.

I'm so sorry.

All because of me...

I'm so sorry, brother.

I'm sorry.

Hi, Bok-dong!

The food here is really good.



On May 8, 1931, Princess Deok-hye married Count SO Takeyuki upon the royal consent of Emperor Showa.

Koreans were outraged by the news.

One of the papers printed their wedding picture with SO's face erased.

And just like that, Princess Deok-hye began to fade from the public's memory.

Takeyuki's house, Tokyo

Shouldn't you eat something?

I've asked to prepare Korean food.

You'll starve yourself to death.

I know you never wanted to marry a Japanese man.

But to me, you're neither Korean nor Japanese.

I just see you as my wife,

and for that reason,

I'm going to do my best to make you happy.

SO Takeyuki

I'm a journalist from Korea.

I'd like to ask you a few questions.

I don't want anything to do with that woman anymore.

With that woman?

She's your wife!

I beg of you.

You do know, don't you?

Please don't come again.


What do you think you're doing?

Stop it!

What are you doing?

No! Why don't you stop?

I'll call the police.

Why are you hiding her whereabouts?

Are you going to abandon her again?


Who are you?

I kept her belongings.

They helped me remember her.

That was her favorite record.

Our daughter's name is SO Masae.

Her Korean name was Jeong-hye.

A year after Deok-hye and I divorced,

she took her own life.

Did you say I abandoned her?


I never abandoned her!

She left me.

She abandoned me.

August 15, 1945

Jeong-hye, the maples of Deoksu Palace were brighter.

It was lovely walking among the bright-colored trees.

Mommy always longed for autumn.

Like this?


Mom, I'm hungry.

Just a moment.

To our good and loyal subjects: After pondering deeply the general conditions plaguing our empire, we ordered our Government to communicate to the U.S., Great Britain, China and the Soviet Union

that our empire accepts the provisions of their joint declaration.

Japan surrendered.

Mom, what's wrong?

Let's go.

We're going home.

Port Shimonoseki

Next, please.

Come here.

Here's your pass.


Why Can't I go?

Let go!

Let go of me!

Let go!

Mom, Can't we just go home?

I told you, dear. Japan lost the war.

Now, we can go back to Korea.

What about dad?

If the war is over, daddy will come home soon.

You must forget about daddy.

From now on, you are no longer SO Masae.

You are YI Jeong-hye.


How they'll welcome us back in Korea!

I've waited twenty years.


Ms. SO Deok-hye?

Where's Mr. SO Takeyuki, your legal guardian?

He's serving in the army.

Your Korean name is...?

YI Deok-hye.

Are you Princess Deok-hye?

Yes, I am.

Your entry has been denied.

What do you mean?

Your name is on the list of those forbidden to enter. Next!

No! But why?

Why am I not allowed into my own country?

I am Korean! I am YI Deok-hye.

Next! Wait! Why?

Why am I forbidden entry?


Please! Mom!

I'm Korean!

You okay, mom?

I'm Korean, I'm YI Deok-hye...

I'm Korean...

It's been so long, Your Highness.

The world has changed yet again.

Korea has found the light once more.

How wonderful this is!

You must be Masae.

Look how big you've gotten!


Didn't I tell you that you'll never set foot in Korea again?


Princess Deok-hye made several more attempts to come home, but President RHEE's administration banned the reentry of the royal family, fearing their reinstatement.

YANG Deok-hye.

She took her mother's maiden name.

No wonder it was impossible to track her down.

Why do you think she ended up like this?

She could've forgotten everything and lived happily.

Who could understand her sorrow?

What is royal family? What is fatherland?

Do you have regrets?

About what?

About how your life turned out because of our country.



No way.

There she is, YANG Deok-hye.

She's here?

Visitation isn't allowed without proof of relation.

She is a Korean princess, and this man is a journalist who flew in to meet her.

Let us at least see her face.

I beg of you.


She hasn't had any visitors in years.

Our records say 15 total.

She tried to commit suicide several times.

Kill herself?

Please come in.

Let me out.

This way.

Press Conference on Summit to Discuss Normalization of Korea-Japan Relations Prime Minister Ikeda expressed a positive position on the Korea-Japan economic treaty.

More detailed discussions will follow.

We'll take questions now.

I'm LEE Jong-ho from The People's Daily.

Have specific dates been scheduled for further talks?

That should be the case, but no dates have been set at this stage.

We'll take the last question.

From Dongho News.

Despite numerous attempts by the previous administration...

I'm KIM Jang-han from Seoul News.

An important assignment before normalization of relations is for us to recover our pride as a nation.

Did you know that the last surviving members of the Korean royal family have been forbidden to return to Korea?

We will only take questions about the economic treaty.

This is clearly shameful!

Will you just stand by and watch our former royal family lead miserable lives in the enemy's country?


Well done, you.

Running a story like this at this critical time?

I did what I had to as a journalist.

Don't you have patriotism?

Release him.

The Director-general wants to see him.

You went to the military academy too? The 45th class?

And you fought for independence.

Are you willing to work for the revolutionary government?

I don't support this administration.

I admire your audacity.

Why hasn't Prince Yeong been able to return?

Former President RHEE forbade the reentry of all royal family because he feared reinstatement of the dynasty.

They didn't go to Japan of their own free will!

Forbidding their reentry and abandoning them is a question of national pride!

What is it that you want?

I want to restore Prince Yeong and Princess Deok-hye's nationality and allow them to return home as soon as possible.

Princess Deok-hye?

Who is that?


How did it go?

Drink up, everyone. Tonight's tab is on me!

Oh really?

Eat all you want!

Patient 'YANG Deok-hye' / Guardian 'KIM Jang-han'

Be careful.

Wait here while we process her release.

Your Highness.

Do you remember me?

It's Jang-han. KIM Jang-han.

'Jang' as in Letter, 'Han' as in Country.

KIM Jang-han.

Give me 10 minutes.

I will come find you in 10 minutes, I promise.

Don't look back. Just run straight ahead.

I will find you again.

We have no time! We must get away now!

That's right. We'll get away from here.

Now you can go back home.

What took you so long?

It's been way over 10 minutes.

Do you know how long I've waited?

I'm sorry.

I'm so sorry, Your Highness.

I'm sorry I didn't protect you.

Gimpo Airport, Korea January 26, 1962

This way.

We're finally here. You've made it home.

Your Highness!

Your Highness!

Your Highness!

It's been 38 years!

Your Highness!

Your Highness, you're here.

Welcome back, your Highness!

Do not enter

I'll go get you some soda.

Wait here for a moment.

Your Highness!

My precious baby.

You went through so many troubles.


Your Highness?

Your Highness?

I lacked virtue as the princess of Korea.


I failed to fulfill the hope of the people.

I wasn't a princess that could give them strength.

Everyone knows that.

You have always been my hope, and the only strength that made me go on.

Princess Deok-hye's last handwriting

'I want to live in Nakseon Hall for as long as I can.'

'I miss you, Prince and Princess Consort Yeong. Republic of Korea, my country.'

Princess Deok-hye died in Nakseon Hall on April 21, 1989 at the age of 78.

Although faded from people's memory, Deok-hye remains in history as the last princess of the Korean Empire.

Prince Yeong finally returned to Korea in November 1963 in a state of coma.

He passed away in 1970.

YI Bang-ja moved to Korea with Prince Yeong and devoted the rest of her life to social work.

Prince YI Wu was killed during the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945 only weeks before Korea gained independence.

SO Takeyuki visited Korea in 1972 to see Princess Deok-hye but the request was refused.