[August 2016 – Instyle] “W” Han Hyo Joo – Interview


Every clothe you were today was white. Do you like white?

Hm… I think I liked it. In the past, I liked achromatic colors like white, grey. Now I prefer primary colors like yellow, blue.

How much of the drama “W” have you filmed so far?

Almost half of the drama was pre-produced, so we completed filming the first 10 episodes.

It’s your first drama in six years. I wonder if being on the set today feels different compared to 2010…

I had actually forgotten about how a drama set was (laughs). It had been so long, but since most of it is preproduced, it doesn’t seem filming will take months. Filming for a 2-3-hour movie takes 3 or 4 months, but filming takes a long time even for the shortest mini-series format of 16 episodes because one episode can last up to 70 minutes, filming time is doubled. It cannot not be a busy time.

I saw the teaser which highlighted the CG action overall.

It’s not a drama you can film according to actors’ emotions. Because of filming location or filming schedule, there are countless situations that must be filmed separately, so planning ahead is important. The director really insisted on the fact that the actors must be prepared.

The fact that Lee Jong Suk is your on-screen partner is a hot issue. As the lead girl Oh Yeon Joo fall for him at first sight and makes a move on him first. You two look sweet together during promotion.


Jong Suk was paler, taller, clearer than I thought… He truly looks like a manhwa character. I try to use slang to look younger as his partner. (laughs) I also changed my hairstyle. Filming is fun.

People say that it’s hard to hhave a good grasp of rational emotion when their partner is young.

I turned 30 this year and it was my first time playing with someone younger than me. However, Jong Suk naturally called me “nuna”, so we wasted no time to figure out how to adress to each other. We’re like friends [t/n: as in they’re the same age] while filming. When we’re acting, I don’t really feel the age difference either. Some guys are young, but they’re manlier than you’d think. I wonder if age isn’t distinct from the rational emotions one can portray.

What kind of character Oh Yeon Joo is?

My previous characters were different, but if you look at Soyul in “Love, Lies” or Yi Soo in “Beauty Inside”, they were calm women. Even Ja Young in “C’est Si Bon” was in the “quiet yet voluble” category. On the contrary, Yeon Joo is a very affectionate and curious character. She has a bright and positive energy. When I first read the scenario and analyzed Yeon Joo, I thought I wouldn’t need to change myself a lot to portray it. I felt that Yeon Joo and I had a lot in common. However, the Yeon Joo the writer in mind has a personality actually a few times brighter and livelier than I thought. I was embarrassed at first, but I got used to it.

You shot more than one project in a year. It seems that the roles that catch your attention are becoming different.

I always tried to change. It’s not that I have a wide acting range, but all the characters I play are different, so I realized such subtle change is actually nice. A change that I’m able to create. I’m always challenging myself to play new characters. For this drama, I think I also confidently give myself a new challenge. And also genre-wise because it’s new for me.

If you want to change a little bit more, which kind of genre would you want to challenge yourself with?

Action. I think I’m at a time when I can do it. I want to give it a try while I’m still young.

Do you think your acting career had a turning point?

When I shot the indie movie “A Special Client” released in 2006. It’s a movie by director Lee Yoon Ki who directed “A Man and A Woman” which was released not long ago. The movie was filmed in 10 episodes/sessions. Back then, my thoughts about acting changed. I let go of my worries about the lines I had to say. I changed my approach to wonder about the kind of woman my character was. After that, commercial movies I filmed became more interesting and always felt new.

It seems that the way you approach a character will change again in ten years.

When I’m working, I tend to be a perfectionist. I used to really build my character before I act. I’m a bit different now. I’ve gone through a lot of changes. When I’m on the set, I try my best to fill what I’m lacking of. It seems that it influnced me as my personality changed.

Can we say that you got a free mindset?

There cannot not be this aspect, right? But more than anything, this job of bringing out a sense of realism is a lot of fun.


Translation: @thesunnytown


4 Comments Add yours

  1. kfangurl says:

    Aw, she sounds very genuine and down-to-earth. And I have to say she seems very natural at playing Yeon Joo, even though she says that she’d felt embarrassed at first. She’s got a very natural, likable onscreen presence that I enjoy. I’m so pleased she’s back in dramaland! Thanks for all your hard work, dear Sunny!! 😘

    1. Sunny Lady says:

      😀 i just started W, but I’m hooked. Ha! I will keep an eye on her itws from now on ;-D

      1. kfangurl says:

        Hee! Yay that you’re enjoying W! And, thanks in advance, for keeping an eye on her interviews ^^

  2. Sa says:

    Thanks for this article and the translation!! HHJ is truly beautiful! W was a great drama and her actig style is natural and catchy. She potrayed the character so well! I am looking forward to her new projects in the future! Love you!

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