Through my friends, I used to look for my old self I forgot about. They’re the first to have memories of me and I sometimes realize how much I’ve changed. That’s why I cherish my friends even more.
What have you been up to these days?
After I was discharged from the army, I worked like crazy. I’ve definitely been resting since I finished the drama “Wonderful Mama” last year. Of course, I’m also preparing for “Angel Eyes”. I feel very good because I do dramas and variety programs one by one, but I really wanted to do both. I received the scenario of “Come To Me and Become a Star” while “Wonderful Mama” was in the last stage of filming. I was physically and mentally exhausted after working on this 50-episode drama, but the content made me want to do it. I couldn’t miss out on this role.
You also shot variety program “A Celebrity Lives In Our House”.
I liked the concept of forming a family with people I had never met in my life. We filmed for 2 nights and 3 days, so it was short, but there was love between us because we cried when we parted ways. It was a good opportunity to think again about the meaning of the word family. It was more than a simple variety program. However, having cameras with us 24h a day was hard. There was even cameras installed in the bathroom. At first, I was aware of the camera, but I also forgot about them in the end and just dropped my pants. Putting back on my clothes and seeing the camera was annoying, so I kept telling the staff to edit the scenes. Living in front of camera is my job, but it would have been awkward for the family when we’re together. On mornings, the family actually waited nicely dressed up and even wearing makeup. Being in front of the camera must have been so burdensome for them…
I heard you went on a trip on your own during your break.
I traveled around Southeast Asia for about 15 days and went to Angkor Wat and Thailand. Before I left, I dreamed of having a romance with the stranger sitting by my side just like it happened in the movie “Before Sunset” as I boarded the plane. To be honest, I’m a fatalist. However, every place I went to was filled with tourists that were newlyweds or families. During my college days, I made the proper backpacking trip as I fought all night with bugs in a shabby guesthouse and ate simple food made by street vendors. When I couldn’t wash up easily, I just wore a hat. It was my first time traveling on my own, so I worried a lot before I left. Now that I actually made this trip, I know I felt many things. Unfortunately, I felt even lonelier because I didn’t live a romance, though. (laugh) I realized there are pros and cons about going on a trip with friends. I want to give it another try later.
Did you get to experience something?
When I’m here, I have a lot of people to help me out. However, I was on my own for this trip, so I had to be the one to find a solution for everything. I was surprised to realize I could do this kind of things. Should I say that it made me grow as a person and find out things about me I didn’t know were there? More than anything, this trip allowed me to be closer with my true self. It’s the biggest reward. Because I was on my own, I’d just sit there idly and thought a lot about things here and there. I also thought a lot about myself. I believe this will be a big help for my acting career and for my life in general.
I’ve always felt at ease with living on my own. I like cleaning, so I never hired a help after moving into my home. However, I can’t od nothing about loneliness. When I go back home at the end of an exhausting day, I have no one to talk to about my complaints, so it makes the house even emptier. I cook because eating only a menu for two nights and three days is boring.
How do you usually spend your days?
When I don’t have a schedule, I mostly stay ime at home. So people ask me “but what the hell do you do at home?”. There are so many things to do at home. Thing you must do like cleaning, the laundry, organizing. Being happy while doing each thing one by one is my daily life. I live in Suji-gu and not in Seoul, so the air is very clean. It’s a good place to take a walk. After my walk, I go to the grocery store and buy fresh ingredients and I cook. It might be hard to believe, but I like cooking. When my friends and my manager come over, they say my cooking is good, so it’s probably okay to trust my cooking skills.
You should be on “I Live Alone”.
A lot of people around me made this recommendation. However, there’s a way to live your private life and keep it as a secret you want to hide. As much as it my personal space, I want to preserve this lifestyle. Besides, seeing a 30-something man meticulously clean his house and even taking care of plants might get people to think he’s quite unlucky.(laugh)
You sound like you’re used to be alone.
I might complain and say I’m lonely, but I do enjoy being on my own. When I’m in a relationship, I need some time to myself once in a while. My girlfriend(s) complained about it. However, I recharge my batteries when I’m alone. To be honest, I’m the kind to match the people I’m with. If someone wants to eat something, I say “okay”, although I actually don’t want to and I just go with the flow. When I reach my limit, I take a break and make a fresh, new mental start. My energy comes back.
How do you deal with the fact of being complicated like that?
I told you I was a fatalist. I think I can meet a woman like this. And if I don’t, then I’ll just go with the flow. (laugh)
Most of people remember Kim Ji Suk as Shin Ji Hoon from “I Need Romance 2” that aired in 2012.
He wasn’t a complicated guy who enjoyed being on his own and was very picky about food. He was a romantic guy like Daddy-long-legs. The drama “Angel Eyes” isn’t different on that aspect. He’s a Daddy-long-legs. Of course, he isn’t a character with unlimited devotion like before. He changes a little as he finds out about the story between Goo Hye Sun and Lee Sang Yoon. He’s a man with a multi-faceted personality. Besides, there’s no ideal guy like him in the world. He’s a neurosurgeon. He’s the number 1 bachelor everyone wants to have. (laugh)
You’re Korea’s expert in Daddy-long-legs roles.
When I started working on “I Need Romance 2”, I couldn’t understand my character. Before filming started, I read the scenario and discussed my character with the director and the writer every night. I had to portray him, but I couldn’t understand him at all. What made me feel that I had to do even more efforts to portray this role was what writer Jung Hyun Jung said. “I hope female viewers would live a fantasy romance through Shin Ji Hoon. Let’s try to make them feel what they can’t experience in real life.” I thought that I had to work harder to fill the void made by the emotions women struggle to experience and are missing in real life.
What is your dating style? Are you like Shin Ji Hoon?
You can say about my dating style that there is a before and an after “I Need Romance 2″(laugh). This shows how much this drama taught me. If men want to know how to date, they should watch the drama and see what to do. If they want to understand why women feel sad/mistreated, they need to watch and study a little. I received a lot of useful dating tips through Shin Ji Hoon’s character. More than anything, what people expect from me after “I Need Romance 2” is to see Shin Ji Hoon and not Kim Ji Suk. Even when I’m not a dating, people are usually surprised when my behavior isn’t like Shin Ji Hoon’s. Whenever I’m walking in the street and meet fans, I must approach them by showing Shin Ji Hoon’s image.
Before, there were many actors I wanted to be like. Daniel Day Lewis, Ryan Gosling. Of course there were also a lot of Korean actors who are as talented as the Hollywood actors. However, I think having my own style is important now. I realize now that it’s true that what I need is to become an actor who walk down his own path and with his own style.
Actors are usually burdened when they have a fixed image like this.
But I do enjoy it. There’s nothing bad about being nice to people. I think there are people who like the character Shin Ji Hoon just as there are fans who like the actor Kim Ji Suk. That’s why it is my job to meet their expectations adequately.
So do you feel any pressure about “Angel Eyes”?
To be honest, I rejected similar characters after “I Need Romance 2”, but my character in “Angel Eyes” isn’t just a Daddy-long-legs. He’s an important character who interfers between the two leads’ relationship. Besides, people can focus on a different actor so my charm can be seen. And I honestly want good ratings. I want to have a taste of what having good ratings feels like. It’s something I can’t overlook. (laugh)
You’ll probably learn again a lot about dating with this drama.
Of course. I can’t wait to see how this will affect me as a person. More than anything, I think this will allow me to grow as an actor because I’ll be able to show without filter the change of personality and emotions in a manly way. Actors grow through the roles they play. Because I live the life of someone else, I’m sometimes influenced by my vision of the subject. Even if it’s not the romance genre, it can become helpful when it comes to dating. (laugh)
Which vibe does actor Kim Ji Suk give off?
Isn’t it closeness? I just have this oppa-next-door style. I did wonder before why I couldn’t give off this mysterious vibe like other actors do. However, just like there’s a role suitable for each person, I think it’s an advantage that I can use this friendly vibe as a foundation to play different characters. Like can I be unpredictable in a way that viewers will be actually surprised? It’s something similar to being a spy.
You’re a friendly person, but you’re distant with the person you’re in a relationship with. Is it because you’re a fatalist?
Each time I see in a movie or a drama how a man and a woman meet in a special way, I expect it every time. However, it doesn’t work like this in real life. I started giving up on these expectations one by one at some point. (laugh) Should we say I opened up a lot? If there’s someone I like, I’ll try my best to make the first step to approach her. What would happen if I strike a conversation with a woman I see walking by in the street?
It would be a SNS chaos.
Some would see it in a serious positive way, but I don’t know if others wouldn’t see me as a crazy person and go “what is this fool doing?”. It’s not easy (laugh).
If you weren’t an actor, you might have experienced this nice encounter by fate.
I don’t know about that. Ever since I was a kid, my dream was to get married early and have a lovely family.
While dreaming to become a teacher?
When I took the aptitude test in junior high and in high school, being a teacher was my number 1 choice. Then, it was being an actor. I saw a play once when I was in school and I enjoyed it. That’s why I applied for the theatre and movie department, but I completely failed. I thought that being an actor wasn’t my destiny and I went back to my previous dream of being a teacher. I got into the German language department. But I think I couldn’t have become a school teacher. Maybe I would have been gone as far as being a private academy cool teacher?
In the end, acting was decided by fate.
As I thought “acting isn’t for me”, I was being a good student and attended my classes and suddently someone in the street made me an offer. Street casting was the trend. I thought about it again. “It is God’s will”. (laugh)
Drama “Angel Eyes” can be God’s will.
Indeed. I have a good hunch. There are many things you can relate to either about the story or the characters themselves. If we can pull this off until the end of the drama, I think we’ll have a good result in the end.
Original article: Sure
T/n: I was pretty indifferent to Kim Ji Suk until “I Need Romance 2”. Maybe his 2-year hiatus made me see him in a new light? but he made me SWOON, so he totally did the job he was hired for. That’s why I put his itw on my schedule , then I got computer issues and I was actually not quite interested after I read the his first answer because it’s been three months since I’ve watched “Came To Me and Become A Star” and I have yet to figure out if I’m okay with the ending or if this was an hour of my life I completely wasted because of the 3 last minutes of this drama. KBS is so good at keeping me on board until we reach the last scene and I’m like “Show, you didn’t just do that, did you?”. Anyway, I had to prioritize and the itw got pushed down the list… But he definitely sounds as cute as I read he was in other itws in the past. I wanted to share the love.