Korean-Chinese by Suk Baidu Bar
Chinese-English by Gracelwf, Xene, Siwonshii, Whogar, chinyee, Sky9, dailytofu
HOT CHILI PAPER VOL 59
NOBODY KNOWS... JANG KEUN SUK
NOBODY KNOWS... JANG KEUN SUK
Q: Let us start with the drama (The Reign of Women 여인천하) that you starred in during your childhood years? (Note: "The Reign of Women" is also known as “Ladies of the Palace”)
A: At that time I was 15 years old, but I was still a child actor at that time, I don’t think I can introduce myself with the particular work. I started becoming a model when I was around 6 years old and I debuted as a child actor when I appeared on television in the 1997 drama ‘Happiness for Sale’.
Q: Do you still remember the scenes during the filming?
A: In (The Reign of Women), whether it was the day I wore hanbok during filming on a snowy day or the time I fell down in the village… I remember all of them, my memory is very good. I still remember, there was a scene where the young Nan Jung was carrying a jar, and I was supposed to throw a stone at the jar to break it, but because I missed, it hit the kid’s face instead.
Q: Were you afraid of the adults at the filming site? (The Reign of Women)
A: Yes I was afraid of them (laughs). I cried a lot of times at the filming site. The filming site is also a part of the community, although the adults around me say that I’m cute, and treat me very kindly. On the other hand, I am a child actor - as an actor, there are certain things one cannot do. But when I was young I didn't know that, I just played happily with the older boys because I was so excited about the props at the filming site. So when the adults scolded me, ‘How can you not read your script yet?’, I cried a lot of times. Since acting in (Happiness for Sale), I always travel to the filming site by myself. Taking the bus and subway… my parents has never accompanied me to the filming sites, not even once.
Q: Only by yourself?
A: A child actor does not have a manager (laughs). Besides that, my mother is the type who won’t accompany me to filming sites, I’m grateful to her when she did that. Hating to ask the staff at the filming site, “Please take care of my son.”, my mother wanted me to become strong, so that no matter what problems I face, I would not just cry away only…. Of course, I did cry at the time, now I can withstand all sorts of challenges.
Q: What were the changes after acting in the 2002 (The Great Ambition) and (The Reign of Women)?
A: Since then, I started to have managers. That was because after I filmed a CF for a mobile communications company, people began to know me….. But, I myself did not change. Even though I have the passion of acting since young, I did not plan my future at all, when I grow older, I might have other dreams and ambitions.
Q: After that, your next drama was (Orange), am I right?
A: Actually, (Orange) was filmed earlier than (The Great Ambition). In my memory, I can only recall the heat (laughs). The filming was done during summer, there were a lot of swimming scenes, and in each episode we played happily while filming. The shooting took 3 months, besides that, I don’t have more memories of them. I was 16 years old then, the year after that I went to study abroad.
As a child actor, Jang Keun Suk was active, among his fans he was popular when he was young. The opportunity to become a child actor came when he was in kindergarten, he followed the suggestion of his teacher, and endorsed a children’s clothing line. After that he starred in several commercial films, and instantly began to embark on the road of acting… even when the filming coincided with school, filming dramas and etc, the thought of becoming a real actor did not cross his mind.
But when his mother looked at him, “If he does not focus on studying now…..”, she felt worried.
Q: Was New Zealand the place where you studied abroad?
A: Yes, before I graduated from junior high school, my mother said to me, “If you don’t study now, your studies will be delayed until I don’t know when.” During that time, I was already famous, so I could not live a normal life in school. My mother said, “Go out to study what you want to study.” So I went to New Zealand with my mother.
Q: Is your mother fluent in English?
A: No, she does not speak English at all. (Laughs) My mother and I went to a language center to learn. Unable to speak English, her choice of living with me abroad for one year was not easy. My mother is a woman to be respected.
Q: What did you gain while living in New Zealand?
A: Yes, that is - even when I’m standing before a foreigner, I won’t get nervous. When a foreigner, especially Europeans and Americans walks towards you, “what should I say, what to do….”, the people who feel afraid and run away are many. Although I’m not fluent in English, how should I explain this, that is - I won’t feel nervous even when I’m standing before a foreigner. I would greet them friendly, for example, if someone asks for directions, I can point out the directions very well, I gained this confidence when I was in New Zealand.
Q: After studying abroad you starred in the youth sitcom (Nonstop 4) when you were 17 years old as a ‘medical student who is conscious to the latest trends’. I heard that you have your own kind of creativity.
A: When I met the director for the first time, I said to him, “I would like to act, I wanted to be a doctor since young, and I like to play the role of a fun-loving medical student.” There was really a medical student role in the script, I was surprised. Because (Nonstop 4) is a situation comedy (sitcom), although there are stories and touching moments, it must be able to make the audience laugh. If I think like this, I still have to accept a lot of challenges. Being able to make up the latest slangs, and do fitting actions when saying my lines. Because I felt that everything was new, I myself tried a lot of different actions during acting, so if the audience respond was good, I would come up with another scene of my own.
Q: After (Nonstop 4), you acted in (Lovers in Prague) without your father’s permission – kinda like a high school kid that loves to rebel huh?
A: I wanted to present a side of me that was different from (Nonstop 4). Back then, the drama shooting happened to clash with the university entrance exam, so I was quite worried about the results. Luckily, the exam was successful and (<