(Editor’s Note: This is part one of two parts. This interview is kind of long, so I split it up into two. Part two should be up this weekend.)
Attracted to the lovely loner Go Dok-mi
- · At the 2012 KBS Acting Awards, you won an award for the drama special Don’t Worry, I’m A Ghost. Congratulations.
Thanks. I gained a lot of strength from that.
- · Compared to dramas and movies, are there any charms to one-act specials?
The material itself is distinctive, and the meaning of the drama is more implicative. Since you have to pour everything into one episode like directing and expressions, you end up concentrating more and it ends up being filmed like that. (Don’t Worry, I’m A Ghost aired July 15th, 2012 on KBS 2. It’s an unfolding love story of a delivery man Moon Gi (Bong Tae Gyu) who lost his memories in a traffic accident and the ghost who appears in front of him, Yeon Hwa (Park Shin Hye.)
- · Besides that special adding an award to your resume, what kind of meaning does that project hold to you?
When You’ve Fallen For Me finished, it was really difficult. I was recovering from a traffic accident. The injuries on my body recovered, but the pain inside lasted longer. The drama was cut an episode due to me getting injured. The staff’s effort and sacrifice seemed like it was in vain, so it hurt me and the burden of whether I could do this again rose. It was difficult physically and mentally, and because of that I could grab the things in front of me correctly. I held an overseas fan meeting in that state and it was hard showing myself like that while meeting people again. While I was recharging after that, I received an offer for Don’t Worry, I’m A Ghost and at first I thought it was just some role of a ghost that came to me all of a sudden. However, as I continued to read, I became assimilated with the character Yeon Hwa. I gained comfort through Yeon Hwa while filming the drama. Yeon Hwa’s words were just like the words I said to myself, so my mind became organized. It became a chance to self examine myself and to self reflect.
- · Truthfully, the drama special didn’t get high ratings. It seems like you didn’t have any eye-catching activities after You’ve Fallen For Me. How did you spend 2012?
First I was busy due to attending school. Right now I finished the second semester of my third year. I don’t know if I’ll be able to continue attending to finish the one year I have left this year, but I spent a lot of time in 2012 as a student. I don’t have the personality to just rest just because I don’t have any projects. Since I like studying things, I worked on fixing my bad posture while riding a bicycle or wake boarding. I also filmed the movie The Gift of the Seventh Room. Last year was a year where I did many things that I wanted to do.
- · Is your body okay now? Are there any after effects of the car accident?
I’m fine, but when it rains, it really hurts. (Laughs) I originally couldn’t get up on the days that it rained, but after the accident, my body become heavy and uncomfortable and starts hurting two days before it rains. I feel sad that my body feels things like that at my age. When I say “Is it going to rain tomorrow? My body aches,” kids around me ask me what am I saying. Even when I stand for a little bit, my legs swell up. I’ll have to carry the after effects of the car accident for the rest of my life.
- · How did you end up being cast in Flower Boy Next Door?
I received the scenario last October when I was finishing filming The Gift of the Seventh Room. The original work (the webtoon I Peek At Him Every Day) is very interesting. Though it is a romantic comedy, Go Dok-mi isn’t a Candy-type or a pitiful, innocent-type of character. I was very worried that people would see Go Dok-mi as a secluded-loner-psycho kind of character, but I was fascinated by the loveliness I could see in her. Since I originally have a bright vitality, I thought it was okay that she was a dark character.
- · When you debuted, it seemed like you had a heavy and pale feeling, but it seems like your image is becoming brighter and healthier.
Yes, I became brighter, but I’ll get heavier in this drama. My lines and acting tone are serious here. Since there are flower boy characters in her reality, it is expected that when the fantasy feeling strengthens, it’ll be close to the typical drama style.
- · Jung Jung Hwa was the director for the 2008 romantic comedy Sweet Lies and the 2011 drama Flower Boy Ramyun Shop. What kind of discussion did you two have about the character Go Dok-mi?
The director advised that it would be best if I didn’t go too dark. Dok-mi became a reclusive loner due to scars she received from people, but originally, she wasn’t a dark and gloomy character. She is just quiet and timid, but abnormal. While acting, the director emphasized the details, so I was able to live as the character a lot better. All actors communicate with the director well. Since it’s amicable, everyone is protecting something.
- · Are there any similar aspects that you share with Go Dok-mi?
Since I do a job that many people see, I do a lot of things at home that I can’t do outside. Despite having a personality where I do things I want to do to some extent, truthfully, I can’t do them all. While there are things that are made while acting, personally, I find acting as that character who’s devoid of feelings to be difficult. I can understand Dok-mi since I have recrived scars from other people too.
- · Is there any burden acting a character people have become accustomed to through a webtoon?
According to people who read the comic, the feeling is different. I just act with the feelings that I read. I wonder if I’ll receive various responses from the viewers. However we added some new flower boys to the drama. The love lines changed.
- · From the beginning of the year, did the atmosphere become bright? (Laughs) Are you receiving the love from the flower boys?
Yes, first I’m receiving love from Ggae-geum (Enrique Geum – Yoon Si Yoon) and Jillak ([translator’s note: It’s pronounced as Jillak but you’ll probably see it written as Jin-rak] Kim Ji Hoon).
An actress of ten years, acting is still enjoyable fun
- · However, you particularly have had a lot of crushes in your works. For example, in Cyrano and You’ve Fallen For Me. Even in Flower Boy Next Door, the set up is that you peek at your neighbor across the street and have a crush on him. Have you had a lot of crushes?
I have once. I really liked him for a long time. In the end, I couldn’t confess to him.
Translation: The Real CZ @ Hallyu Interview