This year, the entire time you have been very busy. In today’s magazine shoot, do you have a more relaxed feeling? During your rest days, do you prefer outdoors or prefer to stay at home?
At home. Most of the time, I would be lying in bed reading scripts or watching movies. If I go out, I will usually go to the café near my place to meet my friends. If I go to a crowded place, I will have a headache. Because I don’t drink, I seldom go to places like clubs.
That’s very simple, can you really rest and relax in such manner?
Of course. Actually all those times outside filming a drama or movie are like resting. Filming CF or having an interview like now, they are all more relaxing than acting. It’s not so tense, definitely different.
Looking at recent interviews, do you feel amazed that your female fans have increased so tremendously?
During fan meets, the scream pitch was higher. Previously, there were more fans aged 20s to 30s. Now, even fans whose age are around 10 plus have increased. Even a 3 year old child recognized me, shouting “Gaksital!”. When I was filming Bridal Mask at Hapcheon, there were grannies who kept shouting at me “1N! !1N!” ,so that I could follow up by shouting “2D”. Even when I wore a hat and sunglasses, I will still be recognized. It made me pay more attention to what I say or behave. When I am out with my mother shopping, I will have to look more intimate. Sometimes, I feel the burden.
When you finished a drama like Bridal Mask, how do you feel?
Mostly calm. After we completed the final scene, we had the celebratory dinner. Because the next day, I had to go and film 1N2D, I went home first. But I just could not sleep, I just sat there all alone staring blankly. I don’t know if it is because I had been thinking too much or I just didn’t have any more thoughts. Whatever it was, my feelings were complex. It was as if in order to say goodbye to Kangto, I really had to send away very close friends. I had the feeling that we could never meet again.
Bridal Mask has become Joo Won’s masterpiece of work, what were your thoughts when you completed the drama?
It left a lot to think about. After more than 6 months of non-stop filming, it did not feel real when it ended. Every scene was fraught with tension, there was also much psychological warfare, it required a lot of concentration powers. So it was more difficult. Even now, it is not easy to adjust to the normal living style. When I sleep, I can’t lie down properly, I will also curl up to sleep (laughs). The older generation has read Bridal Mask manga so the expectation towards the drama was also very high. I felt it. Massive amounts were poured into this production, appearing as the lead actor alongside the sunbaes, I did not even have energy to worry about the competition. I felt that if the drama were to fail, it must be me, this type of burden and pressure was terribly heavy. So I gave my utmost and my very best ability every single minute and second.
Was there any particular scene which was very difficult even when you think about it now?
When hyung died, I had to run inside the house to tell mother and then I saw that mother had also died. When you see that all the reasons for you living are gone, it was a tragic situation. It was my first time as an actor to experience such a shock. Because I cried too much, my blood pressure shot up and my limbs were all numb.
[Would you say that you have broken your own barrier?]
Yes. From the start of filming Bridal Mask, I had never paid attention as to how my face or expression will be captured by the camera. I just followed Kangto’s emotional ups and downs, using my interpretation. Although sometimes I get worried about how the audience will receive it but I believe in myself.
Were there times when you felt that “I did this thing really well’?
When I intensified my concentration to the point of exhaustion and obtained a result, I will feel very fulfilled. Previously when I was performing, each time after the performance ended, my entire body will be soaked in sweat. I would think “In this two and half hours, I have tried my very best and immersed myself” and feel especially good about it. When I return home after working through the night or when I have successfully completed a piece of work, I would feel that as a man, I have done quite well.
The Joo Won we know is a model student who from a young age only knows how to perform, cannot even drink a cup of alcohol, treats his family very well, is there a side which we do not know?
I cannot be called a filial son and I don’t treat every person so amiably(laughs). When I am tired, I will also show an unhappy face. Although this is a very uninteresting answer, in reality, no matter how good I am to my parents, I still feel it’s not enough. I always hope that in other people’s hearts, I am a good person. If I am dislike by someone, I will feel really hurt, fretting over “Why does he hate me”. It seems that there is nothing surprising about me.
In order to cultivate their ability to express, some actor will intentionally do things that are rebellious, have you been like this?
I do not even have the time to be rebellious. I have also never rebelled before in my youth, I feel there is no need to. From the start of high school, in order to save up school fees, I went to work in the theatre, I used whatever time I had. During my school days I even spent Christmas working and preparing for performances. Even when I was performing in musicals and dramas, I never rested. It has to be this way because this is what I love to do. Frankly speaking, although you can gather some experience by being rebellious, it does not seem necessary. After completing each piece of work, I will have grown some. I also dream “If I continue like this I will also be able to be like my sunbaes, having excellent acting ability.” I never thought of giving up acting
[You look like the type who does not tire easily]
This is my only strength. I have a lot of confidence in my physical stamina and passion. Acting ability is quite alright too(laughs)
Usually do you get close to people easily like you do on 1N2D?
Partly, when I am with my family. When I am with my elders, I am just like a child. Frequently, I will have skinship and my voice a little higher. In 1N2D when I am with the hyungs and Tae Woong hyung, I am also like this. During my musical theatres, it was the same, I was always the youngest. But people always do change according to different positions, so I don’t do this to every one.
Reading your interviews, when asked about your favorite song, you recommended Shi Kyung’s song. Before you started filming 1N2D, you were his fan, you must have been very happy when you met him.
When I met Shi Kyung, the feeling was magical. My first meeting was far better than I had expected! His voice was very tender. It was not just singing, even when he was reading or when he was being a broadcast DJ, he was really cool. And edgy(laughs). Many female fans love this side of him. This type of person right in front of me, being able to hear his voice in person, it is really great.
You have already been on this ‘wild variety show’ for 6 months, are you now adapted to it?
Hyungs are very good, I am so very close to the production staff, even when doing the morning Opening and bulbokbul, I do not feel shy. Now, I just have a great time playing with hyungs, I also hope there will be some new things appearing. In this show, more than Joo Won, you can see the humane Moon Jun Won. Viewers seem to like to see me make mistakes or do things that ruin my image. (laughs)
[the thing you are worst at is arithmetic?]
Yes. My mental arithmetic is really bad. My general knowledge is also not too good, I am the most confident in making funny with body (this is a literal translation, who knows what he means!). Mathematics grades were not an entry requirement into drama schools, so I just gave it up since the first year of high school.
I was shocked when I read that on the average, you take 40 minutes to bathe. Like this, wouldn’t you get scolded in 1N2D?
In 1N2D, they gave ample time for bathing(laughs). The time taken was from bathing to putting on moisturiser. I am more meticulous than others when I bathe, I also take longer to put on skin care products.
Previously you were a musical actor, you must be very sensitive to music. What is your recent favorite?
I prefer to listen to older songs. Ifrequently listen to songs by Steven Wonder, it’s really great. I also like Eric Benet.
[Who is the one who makes up the most songs on your playlist?]
Shi Kyung hyung’s songs are the most, I think he doesn’t know.
Have you ever thought of not being an actor and be a singer?
Ah, that does not seem to be my field. But in the future, I want to act in a musical again.
Now, what’s the thing that has the most ability to cure you?
Cure? Must be someone who can make me feel relax and intimate. I don’t really like new things, I like to spend time with my close friends, colleagues and family, sharing stories. At home, I will chat with my parents and play Anipang(handphone game). I like those people who treat me the same before and after I acted in Bridal Mask. When the result of the work is very good, I also felt that I have grown, it could possibly make me proud unknowingly. But whenever I meet up with them , my shoulders relax and I will revert to the my old self.
Having completed 2 movies and dramas, you have really done a lot. Before 2012 come to an end, is there anything that you would like to do?
Scheduled to broadcast in January, I will start to film the new drama “Secret Lovers Battle” , I hope it will have a good start. Contemporary drama, in line with my age. No matter how I see it, it’s an ordinary setting, it is my first time trying this genre, to me it’s very new and fresh. It should be interesting.
[so it’s just like the excitement before a trip?]
Actually I am also worried whether I will do well. Being the main actor is very frightening. Recently, every night before I sleep and in the morning when I open my eyes, my mind is all on the role in the new drama. If I have a happy time filming this time round like I had in the past, it will be good.
We have been shooting from mid-noon and it’s going to be evening soon. Now, it must be time to rest?
I will be going with my agency hyungs to have a good meal together. Hyungs will drink and I will drink my coke(laughs). But I will definitely not miss it.
Chinese translation: minidadalove @ 朱元贴吧_百度贴吧
English translation: mrdimples@soompi