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아시아경제 최신 기획이슈

[INTERVIEW] Actor Yeon Woo-jin

최종수정 2012.03.14 23:17 기사입력 2012.03.14 23:08

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Interview with actor Yeon Woo-jin

Yeon Woo-jin [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]

Yeon Woo-jin [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]


My name is Yeon Woo-jin. My agency got my name from a naming center and I like how smooth it sounds.
My birthday is July 5, 1984. My father and younger brother act stiff in front of my mother and I'm the most affectionate one in our family. I can't act cute in front of her but I go shopping with her.
I made my debut in the movie "Just Friends?" under the name Seo Ji-hoo which I named myself after looking it up in a traditional Chinese dictionary. My real name is Kim Bong-hee and when director Kim Jho Gwang-soo asked me if I was going to promote myself in that name, I told him no. (laugh)
I grew up in Gangneung, in the city of Gangwan-do, until I graduated from high school. I often go back home by bus but for some reason I suddenly feel lonely doing that alone these days. I want to have my friends and family next to me on the way home because it has my favorite path and scenary.
I was the class president when I was in elementary school which I was pretty good at, and I was outgoing and I wore a mask and took part in a play for my school's arts festival. I was really short back then but all of a sudden I grew so tall that later I got stretch marks. Even my high school friends asked me if I got shots for growth hormone. My character Jae-kwang in "Ordinary Love" grew up hearing harsh criticism but I got taller by eating a lot of tofu. Ah, I also drank a lot of orange juice.
I kind of had some difficulties shooting "Ordinary Love" because of my height. In order to shoot a bust shot with actress Yoo Da-in, I had to lower myself a lot by spreading out my legs to see eye-to-eye with her. It was even harder to go backwards in that position and a lot of people on set laughed because of it.
I watched a lot of movies when I was in high school. I basically watched movies alone every day after classes before I became a senior in high school. I was obsessed with Hollywood actor Edward Norton and Chinese actor Leslie Chung that I watched all of their works. I'm the kind of person who watch all the works by a certain director I like.
The university that I wanted to go to had an architecture major and I don't think I would have become an actor if I went to that school. I liked to sketch buildings since young and I think I was influenced by my father because he is an art teacher. When I was in high school, I thought I was going to build the World Cup Stadium. (laugh)
When I was a senior in high school, I listened to rocker Seotaiji's song "I'm Ultraman" a lot during study hall. It brought me a culture shock and led the way for me to become obsessed with other rock bands like Korn. My brother is pursuing his career in music right now and I remember that I used to teach him. Even now, I would like to check out the ETP Festival when I have time. I'm pretty sure that if I go with my friends we will take off our clothes and go completely wild.
Lately, I've been listening to songs by the late singer Yoo Jae-ha. I feel that the lyrics go well with the emotions that someone my age is going through.
The last time I went to sing in karaoke was in Jeonju. The reason we went was because it was our day off and we had nothing to do after eating. I sang "My Image Reflected in My Heart" by Yoo Jae-ha. I felt that I sang pretty well that day.
I want to go back to Busan. I went to the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) for my film "Just Friends?" I wasn't signed with an agency at the time. I rushed to every event after putting my backpack in a locker at the subway station. That was when I first watched the trailer for our movie and I was very touched. Later that night, when I was strolling along the beach I met people who recognized me and that made me feel surreal even more. I realized that I really took a step into this field. I was filled with mixed emotions. I missed my family but at the same time I was happy. And that was only two years ago. I think that I will relive those emotions again if I go back to that beach again.
The only sport that I follow is baseball. We don't have a hometown team and I have been rooting for the Lotte Giants since I was in second grade. I have yet to visit the Busan Sajik Baseball Stadium but I'm sure that I will flip out cheering them on.
My all-time favorite character in the comic "Slam Dunk" is Yoon Dae-hyup. He is seriously talented though his skills aren't widely recognized. He's the master of misfortune and I like the fact that he works really hard but never tells anyone about it. I know that if I work out a lot I will be just like him, shaking my head when someone asks me if I work out. (laugh)
The best way to stop yourself from getting stressed is not to be greedy about small stuffs. I'm the kind of person who forms a broad outline and just go with the flow. And I feel that I'm lucky when I'm offered roles for different productions. My goal? It's just to be happy at every moment. That is why I don't map out my plans on what I will do when I'm in my thirties. Having my very own family would be one of my big plans. My pride grew as I became more confident with my acting and it would be great if I can bring happiness to my family because of it.
I've been taking a break from dating girls because I was so busy. I'm the the type who falls in love with a girl at the first sight so it's kind of hard to tell you what kind of a girl I like. If I have to say an answer to that, I tend to fall for someone who is a professional in their own area. (thinks for a long time) But they'd have to be fun to hang around. Please let me know if you meet someone like that.

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