[November 2015 – Elle] Lee Kwang Soo – Interview

This was an interview Lee Kwang Soo, Lee Chun Hee and Park Bo Young did to promote their movie “Collective Invention” which was released in October 2015. I will only translate the Lee Kwang Soo’s part.


I saw you passing by in a crowd all by yourself 7 years ago. You kept bowing your head because you hunched your shoulders as if you were scared of bumping into someone and hurt this person? It might have been when my hair was a bowl cut. It was when I was advertising a news agency.

I guess it might be because you had such a quiet image back then, but your sly image in “High Kick Through The Roof” and “Running Man” was exciting. That’s why so many people asked what’s my personality by nature between the image you see on the screen and the one I am in real life. However, I think both images are who I am. There’s a side of me I show to the people I’m used to see and a side of me I show to the people I meet for the first time. And it’s also different when I’m in front of the camera. Isn’t it being a normal person?

What’s similar between the Lee Kwang Soo the audience doesn’t know and the character “Park Gu” you play in this movie? Hm…. The fact that he doesn’t have a mind of his own? You’ll know when you watch the movie, but Park Goo is the type who doesn’t affirm himself. He graduated from college and prepares himself to find a job, but something doesn’t go well and he must stay at home and find a way to earn money. That’s why he believes he can earn 300 000 won in just 2 days if he takes the medecine and joins this scientific experiment. That’s how he becomes a fish-man.

You don’t have a mind of your own in real life? When I meet people, I just follow what they want to do instead of saying clearly what I want to do or suggest what we could do.

Even if you end up doing something you hate? It’s important to ask what to do, but I enjoy the fact itself of spending time with people, regardless of what we do. I think I can do what I want when I’m on my own. I want to make the others comfortable. That’s why when I meet people whose personality is similar to mine, we take a long time to figure out what to eat when we go to a restaurant. And then it takes a long time to figure out what we do after we’re done eating (laughs).

What makes you go “I really hate this behavior but I will put it with it”? For instance, someone who uses banmal [t/n: speech that doesn’t use non-honorifics] as soon as you meet them for the first time? I really like using banmal (laughs). On the contrary, I can’t really approach people if I use honorifics. Here’s an example. The first time I met Yoo Jae Suk-hyung at the broadcasting headquarters. I greeted him and he said “oh! Kwang Soo-ya, hi!” and I really liked it. Before that, I thought I should use honorifics with people younger than me in order to be polite, but I learned that lowering the form of speech can give you a way to embrace or to make a good impression in a comfortable way.

When you played a fish-man? The reaction around me at first was laughter. I also heard the role suited me.

The poster surprised me because it really seemed to be a fish-man. It seems that people think it’s a cute fish. To be honest, it would be a cute fish. To be honest, it was the mask that made it look like even more like a fish. Aside from the shape of my nose and my lips, everything was refined in 3D (laughs).

You’re one of the actors who use freely their facial expressions. However, this time, we don’t see your face. That’s why when I was reading the scenario, my worry was how I would be able to convey the emotion to the audience. I thought the viewers wouldn’t see my facial expressions because I wear a mask, so I didn’t know what to do. I kept talking about it with the director and I did a lot of research about my hands gestures, my walking pace and even my shoulders movements.

When you started acting, did you tell yourself “this is the only thing I must do”? Obviously, but for a good role and a good scenario. I didn’t think “I must become a great person, I must become a great actor”. I don’t have a big goal right now. I’m just thankful for each day passing by. Maintaining what I have today is something I’m thankful for too.

What you can say with confidence that no one but you can do? It’s my dream that things turn out this way. The fact that I feel, that other people think, “this is something Lee Kwang Soo must do”. Finding something like this is my dream.

A role you want to try? I said in another interview that I want to try to play a villain, but there are many roles I haven’t tried yet, so I want to try any type of roles.

Aren’t there many types of villain? For instance, the cruel merciless villain or the quiet psychopath. Regardless of which type of character, I hope there will be a justification for the character to be the way it is. A villain who becomes the way he is because of circumstances and not because he was evil for no reason. This is what attracts me to villain roles.

However, if you wake up tomorrow and realize that you turned into a fish-man? What is this? (laughs) Well, I’d have to make a living. Setting a sushi restaurant or something.


Translation: @thesunnytown – thesunnytown.wordpress.com


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