[Interview] “Peak Popularity” Actor Ji Chang Wook

Ji Chang Wook gave his impressions after the finish of “The K2.”  He talked about the disappointing parts, plus his chemistry with YoonA (of Girls’ Generation), and his compatibility with [actress] Song Yoon Ah.

On the morning of 14 November, an interview with Ji Chang Wook was held at a cafe in Yongsan-dong, Itaewon, Seoul.

On the final broadcast day [12 November], Ji Chang Wook discussed his impressions of the end of the broadcast, saying, “The last shooting ended around 4 o’clock in the morning.  I fell asleep, woke up, and started realizing ‘that was the end of the drama’.”

Ji Chang Wook says, ” Although I’m very thankful for the praise I’ve received, ‘The K2’ is a work that I became regretful over.  I wanted to show lots of interesting things about the character.  I was worried about whether I could persuade viewers, or if I could not persuade viewers in certain parts.”

He added, “There was something unsatisfactory in the flow of the love story.   There needed to be a reason to convince the audience at some point how Anna (YoonA) and Jae-ha (Ji Chang Wook) became attracted to each other.”

He also told about the trouble with acting in so many action scenes.  Ji Chang Wook said, “I thought that it was not just an action drama.  I thought that the composition and relationship between the people was interesting; I had determined that it would be an attractive work just by that.  I think the action is one of the highlights.  However, it was too much.  I think that for right now, I am probably not going to act in action again.”

“I also remembered the action scene in the public bath, I was worried many times for over-exposure.  I also told the director that that it is hard to maintain [the same] body proportions everyday,” he said.  “I was afraid of that fight with our clothes removed.  Although I was worried that among viewers, some people would feel disgusted, but it was good that it turned out to be a unique scene.”

He also talked about chemistry with Song Yoon Ah in the drama.  Ji Chang-wook said, “In the role of Choi Yoo-jin, I was thinking of Song Yoon Ah sunbaenim in my heart, it was really fun when I saw it on the screen,” and “It was serious when acting with Song Yoon Ah sunbaenim.  The energy that I feel when acting.  It was a feeling that had a high degree of concentration.  It is not easy to keep up being interrupted [while filming].”

“I tried to see YoonA of Girls’ Generation without as much (idol) prejudice as possible, so I only just saw YoonA as Anna.”  Ji Chang Wook found out from the director about the ending’s kissing scene with YoonA at the Barcelona airport in Spain; he was very startled and told YoonA “we need to get to know each other well really fast.”  He laughs, “It was a lot of added pressure.”

In the end, he revealed his schedule of entering the army.  “I think the notice will arrive around the end of February next year,” he said.  “I think it will be difficult to postpone.  I’m thinking about my next work; my head hurts looking at scripts.  I would like to appear in another work before going to the army.  I wonder if a good ro-co [*romantic comedy] will be available, but I will more than likely not take on another action show.”

Translated from Japanese to English by cherkell.   Please do not reprint, repurpose, translate, or otherwise copy our content without written permission from Ji Chang Wook’s Kitchen.

About cherkell

Left Coast Otaku and Chicago Expat, successfully mangling both the Japanese and Korean languages at the same time. Devoted Ji Chang-wook Follower since 2007. Fangirl Squeeeeeing Nightly; No Cover Charge.

16 thoughts on “[Interview] “Peak Popularity” Actor Ji Chang Wook

  1. Totally agree with JCW about the development of his character and Anna in The K2. The story didn’t flow well. If the writer spend more time developing the relationships and less on the action it could have been an epic drama! I still watched it for JCW though!

    • agree. the writing was uneven. it did not lend itself to flowing with the story. i hope he can find one more project but that will be cutting it close. there is never too much ji chang wook in my life!

    • JCW is correct. A lot of viewers are shocked of the sudden end of K2, the onset of the episodes are so good especially in the action scene. We know that JCW did his best in this drama. only the flow of the story is not that good in the last scene. I’m just quite dissapointed on the later parts of the story.

  2. Thank you Cherkell for this translated interview.

    It really is a tough life for an actor. And JCW is really analytical about his own work. It just shows how meticulous he is and how hard he works in presenting a good drama to his audience. That is true dedication. Not difficult to see why we love JCW so much!

    Feeling miserable to know we only have JCW for just another 3 months.. 😢

  3. He said he wants to do another work before joining the army. Wow! He is interested in doing a rom-com. I hope he will have enough time to do a drama or a movie.

  4. Thank u for posting this article. I had a question:
    It saddens me to know that he has so many regrets about K2. I know it was the top drama on tvn, but did it still get him a lot of unsatisfactory reviews? Did this drama not do anything much for his career?

    Thank u

    • It’s not like that at all. There were no unsatisfactory reviews about his acting. Wook merely has regrets over what he perceives is his not being able to bring full life to his character. Korean actors/actresses are always extra self-critical after a project ends, when they can finally step back and see the production as a whole. It seems Wook is even more circumspect because he feels he could have done a much better job portraying Jae-ha.

      • Thank u so much for setting my mind at rest 🙂 Regardless of the poor story flow, I loved him in K2. I think he’s the BEST of his generation. And I hope big productions and award commities in SK recognize him as that and give him his due.

  5. I am happy that he will try to do a romantic comedy before he leaves for his service duties. I am happy to say I enjoyed K2, all the actors were mesmerizing. He will be missed for the next 2 years, but we are anticipating the mature JCW that will return to us. Thank you JCW for entertaining us.

  6. Gabby and cherkell, I don’t know how you two do it. But this is the best fan site yet. It is complete yet not redundant, organized, more rational than emotional, saving me so much time in finding news about JCW. There is so much I enjoy out of your site I almost feel that I should help in some way. Well, let me know if there’s any …

    For JCW, I wish I could let him know to ensure him that we will still be here when he finishes his army duty. I think he has been very wise in his choices of projects so far, choosing projects that would expand and showcase his range as an actor. Especially for doing Five Fingers and Empress Ki, which allow him to shine, not being typecast forever as a smiley character.

    I hope he doesn’t rush and cram as many projects as he can because he has to leave soon. Keep your cool and use your heart JCW, with your willingness to work hard, there is so much potential for you yet.

  7. Yes I agree with JCW regarding his comments about K2.
    And I hope he gets into a good rom-com before his enlisting

  8. I’m very much satisfied with JCW performance in K2, he was able to justify all the actions needed for them said movie..Hoping for his next movie, like historical drama.

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