I’m not childish, I’m actually a philosopher.
The ongoing broadcast of “Whirlwind Girl 2” has given us a big surprise — Ji Chang Wook. He is cool and mysterious in the drama, but outside the screen, he is always described by his colleagues as “playful and active”, “greedy and childish”, and won a legion of fans based on these qualities, including the endearing nickname of “Ji three-year-old (池三岁/chi san sui)”. But in Ji Chang Wook’s interview with Tengxun, he frankly reveals that he is not as “childish” as what everyone thinks, but is mature and thorough when it comes to dealing with daily matters in life, and will even ponder over problems like a philosopher sometimes.
Coach Chang An has a distant feeling that keeps strangers away, is this similar to your real self?
Coach Chang An’s personality is colder, the type who is hard to get close to, you cannot find a trace of smile on his face. But my personality is very different.
Isn’t it rather tough to control your laughter?
So I laugh once the camera isn’t aiming at me.
What is the most interesting aspect of Chang An?
I feel he’s very concrete. There is a big contrast between his personality in the beginning and towards the end, there will be fluctuations and you will sense a big change, so it’s rather fun.
You seem rather fluent in Mandarin. Is the language barrier lesser now during filming?
Honestly speaking, Koreans are not very familiar with the four intonations in Mandarin, because Korean does not have intonation, but Mandarin has it. Sometimes I will say a word, but the other party thinks I’m scolding him because I didn’t use the correct tone, these kinds of situations often occur. There was once during filming where I was saying my lines according to the script, and all the staff members ended up laughing. I later found out that my tone was wrong, so the other person thought I was scolding him.
The first season of “Whirlwind Girl” was highly popular, do you have confidence in the viewership ratings for the second season? Do you think Chang An is capable of becoming a new generation of a “nation’s husband”?
The first season of “Whirlwind Girl” was too popular, so it makes me stressed. I do not bear any particular hopes of him becoming a nation’s boyfriend or nation’s husband. I just hope that the audience will watch this drama, and that everyone will love it.
Chang An has several fighting scenes, were those difficult to act?
I’ve done action scenes in previous dramas, so I do have such experience.
Were you injured during the fighting scenes this time?
I act as a coach, so I didn’t get hurt as much as the other actors.
This coach bullies several people. Was it enjoyable for you?
I don’t feel good bullying others, I’d rather film scenes of myself getting beaten up. Compared to bullying others, getting bullied is somewhat better.
If you really had to bully someone, do you often find yourself unable to land a blow on the other person when fighting?
Although it’s just acting, if we had to fight for real, I will still feel uncomfortable. I will apologise to the other person.
You go against Chen Xiang in the drama. The two of you have many fighting scenes together right?
Basically, I have many scenes with him where sparks fly. The way they were filmed can make the blows look heavy, but I was actually unable to deal the blows during filming, we will discuss how to go about filming.
You keep emphasizing this point. Are you especially soft-hearted?
I don’t know either, but because I’ve been hit before, so I can sympathise with their feelings. It’s painful and tiring to get beaten up, so rather than being the one beating others, I’d rather be the one getting hit.
It’s your first time working with An Yue Xi. How was it?
She plays an important role in the drama, but she did a good job, and carried the mood of the whole show.
Do the both of you have many kissing scenes? Do you feel awkward filming those?
It was pretty awkward, but we had to pretend we weren’t for the sake of work.
In reality, is she a strong woman or a cute one?
She has both kinds of charms, she looks cute sometimes, and strong at other times.
When it comes to girlfriends, what characteristics do you prefer?
I’m not too particular, as long as the feeling is right. As long as we don’t feel bored when talking to each other, she can understand what I’m saying, and we are able to have a smooth conversation.
An Yue Xi teased you on stage by calling you childish, do you think you are childish?
I don’t think so. I’m the matured type, I will deal with problems seriously in real life. My thinking is more on the philosophical side.
Then are you a person with complicated thoughts?
No, I just think very philosophically, not so simple.
Translated from Mandarin to English.