When you first decided on appearing in Healing Camp, were there any talks of you being the manageress? Holding down a position and sitting there, you must have thought that you should show a few reactions. There were even responses such as ‘What kind of combination is that? (Laughs)’
It was a similar feeling to when I was cast in ‘Be Strong, Geum Soon’. No matter what others said, knowing myself, I felt like I could do well, and that kind of confidence rushed into me. I came to realize that this wasn’t an easy job as I thought, but as I’m slowly adapting, I’m able to display my naturally mischievous side.
How did you feel when you first received the proposal to be an MC?
I felt like I could record once a week while juggling my drama/movie schedules, and I vaguely thought that this would be fun. Since this is a concept where we film outdoors, I felt relieved. I blindly started, but after actually doing it, I realize that I can rush in without any fear.
There have been many positive responses that there’s a rediscovery of you through Healing Camp. Since you have done many elegant, quiet, and coy roles, there must have been many people who thought that you were really like that.
After Healing Camp, the number of people who look at me as a mischievous girl has increased. The awareness of me among the general public has definitely gone up. Thanks to Healing Camp, I was able to do ’26 Years’ and have received offers for a variety of projects. Honestly, I couldn’t have thought that my appearance on Healing Camp and my projects were linked. Variety is very scary.
Have you ever felt any doubt about your job as an actress?
After being in this field, there incidents that put people on the cutting board go up. It’s a job where we must fight for ratings. Even I’m not 100 percent free there. I’m working harder as I want to become more free.
I heard that you said that you also wanted to play the younger version of your role in ’26 Years’ at the production briefing.
Since I have only done nice roles in the past ten years, I wanted to show other sides of myself. There’s wickedness, feebleness, insufficiency, and ugliness inside of me, too. I want to pick up those sides of me and try to act them. Even more than as an ordinary person, I can feel that free feeling. I may be able to settle the thirst I have for the wickedness inside of me that is difficult to express in my normal life through another field. (Laughs)
You graduated from the Seoul Institute of Arts while majoring in Film. Since when did you hope to become an actress?
My mother’s influence is strong. She always said that I would become an actress. Seeing that, when I matured, I knew that I would be an actress. I went to auditions since high school, and I worked hard to get activities as an actress. However, it didn’t work out well. However, I fell behind a lot, but now that I’ve reached this position, it’s a precious experience for me. To be honest, I’m thankful to my mother. I couldn’t have dreamt of living this life by myself. During my childhood days, I was a passive child, and since I covered my face a lot, I couldn’t even talk with people.
How is it now?
While starting to act, I became an active person against my will. While people were starting to be aware of the name ‘Han Hye Jin’, my mind started to become stabilized. I started finding my confidence little by little, so while I started coming up with adamant goals or things to supervise, I was able to speak my mind with more confidence, and I learned how to treat people.
Why did your mother say that you would become an actress?
Just because it seemed like it would be a good thing to see. Among one’s daughters, I think it’s good to hope one of them becomes an actress, but I think my mother thought that I was prettiest one (Laughs). She thought one had to be pretty to become an actress. Even now the acting profession gets highly praised. Truthfully, the people from the past who held acting jobs were the so-called ‘ddanddara’, where there were many cases of people disrespecting them. (Translator’s Note: Ddanddara is a term from the old days given to actors to when acting was seen as a bad profession.) Even my brother-in-law (Kim Kang Woo) is an actor. My mother was the same way towards my sister. My mother asked my sister how she got that kind of husband and to be thankful her whole life while taking care of him. (Laughs)
This past December, you mourned for your father. Did he originally have a chronic illness?
He did for a very long time. My father collapsed in 2000 from a stroke due to stress, so from that time, his health deteriorated, and later had surgery for either a low blood pressure problem or a heart problem. He was repeatedly hospitalized and discharged because of after effects and side effects, so he ended up like this.
Don’t you hear often that your standards are (too) specific or that you’re stubborn?
Everyone I know knows that. They know that I’m stubborn and can’t be broken down. I’ll be the same in the future, too. I experienced it first-hand and realized that in being right, I’ll be stubborn. Of course, I’m the type to easily admit that it’s not the case all the time. As an actress, having responsibility about the box office success of a movie I chose to be in can be somewhat of a different problem. I strive not to constrain myself to great results. Even though I have been in movies that have done really well, the opposite is also true. Since I have been in a successful movie, it’s not to say that I can do a lot of movies. On the contrary, doing movies is difficult. When one does an unsuccessful project, they have to find a breakthrough, so they do many projects. In the end, both paths have their own rhythm.
It seems like you don’t have a pessimistic personality.
Yes, however, I’m not optimistic. I can’t accept every situation as just being bright all the time. First, I have to worry. However, soon after, I look back and change, thinking positively. If things are stopped, it’s not mine, and since it’s not my path, something else will come. That’s my method of thinking. Positive people for the most part are realists. We analyze the current situation, and since we’re the type to search for a positive breakthrough, we certainly have cold sides as well. We’re the type to calm ourselves down even though at first we are taken back when confronted with a situation. When we are at emotional high, the decisions we make always ruin our work. When we trying to control our emotions and calmly think, there are never any mistakes. However, from time to time, we want to take action according to our emotions.
Translation: The Real CZ @ Hallyu Interview