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The MBC TV miniseries,Princess Hours was a huge career success for singer Yoon Eun-hye, who was making her acting debut. She has been cast in the MBC TV miniseries, Coffee Prince, where critics have hailed her as an actress who brings a colorful shade to her character.
- How does it feel to play the role of Koh Eun-chan in Coffee Prince?
I put on some extra pounds to portray my tomboyish character. It's hard to tell if Koh Eun-chan is a girl or a boy. I drink a lot of coffee but I'm learning so many things about coffee that I didn't know before through this drama. I'm having a great time working on the drama with terrific people.
- We were told that you cut your hair to prepare for this role.
I had a long discussion with Director Lee Yoon-jung about that. I loved the script when I first read it but I wasn't that eager to cut my long hair. The press and media have been saying that I look prettier than before so I resisted the idea of cutting my hair. But the role was too good to pass up and I knew I'd gain a lot of experience from working together with so many talented people. And the most important factor about Koh Eun-chan is that she had to look like a boy and have short hair. So I just went ahead and got a short haircut.
- Playing a tomboyish character must have put you in situations where you might have gotten hurt.
I'm a bit careless so I get a lot of scrapes and bruises. But I'm OK with it because I like my role in this drama. (actor Kim Chang-wan mentions that Yoon Eun-hye was given a tetanus shot after she got pricked by a nail.) When I look tired, the crew doesn't give me any slack. They think I'm just another guy so I have to tell them, I'm a girl, you know.?
- You've played tomboy characters so far so would you prefer to play a more feminine character next time?
I don't think I'm ready for it yet. I'm not exactly into tomboy characters. I think my characters were just cheerful types. If Koh Eun-chan were an angelic type of character, I would have still taken it. I knew I had to be in the drama so I wasn't nitpicky about the character I would play. I still have a lot of stuff I'd like to show to viewers so I don't want to rush into new roles.
- Is there a special reason why you chose this drama?
I read the synopsis while I was traveling abroad, and I instantly knew it would be a right fit for me. And for viewers, I thought it would be a fresh breath of air. I liked the story. I just felt like I'd have fun in the role of Koh Eun-chan. I'm familiar with director Lee Yoon-jung's previous works so I trusted his instincts. I was confident that he'd be able to make my role shine. Everyone is so open on the set.
- Were there any special moments on the set?
I watched movies and TV shows to find out stuff about men that I didn't know very well. Like their habits and the differences between men and women. Even though I was trying to stay in character as a tomboy, I screamed like a girl when I fell into a pond. Everyone laughed about it.
- How did you maintain your weight for this character?
I weigh the same as before. But my body looks different from different camera angles. When you're working on a drama, you have to watch your health. We shot a lot of eating scenes. Director Lee said that I'm gaining weight as the drama progresses. I've eating better these days so I think I'll have to slim down a little.
- Have people mistaken you as a boy after you cut your hair?
Not really. But since I wear jeans and a T-shirt most of the time, I get stares when I use the women's restroom in between shoots. A woman was surprised to see me in the women's restroom just yesterday and that bothered me a little but I guess it indicates that I'm doing a fine job in acting as a tomboy. I hear a lot of people say that I act natural in my character and that's always good to hear.
- What are the positive factors of playing such a role?
I don?t have to wear any makeup for my role. I just apply some lotion. Since I don't have to spend hours in the makeup room, I can get some more sleep in the morning. If I played a normal role for actresses, I'd have to worry about my makeup when I'm running and sweating. But in this role, it doesn't matter at all. I just wipe off the sweat after an intensive scene. That's very convenient. It also helps me to stay in character and we get those moments on camera. When I get zits I don't try to cover it up. It's what makes my character look more believable. I think a lot of people appreciate it when they see me focus on my acting instead of my looks.
- Any last words?
I can't wait to see our first episode premiere soon and I'm really excited during every shoot. We're not going overboard with the funny stuff and the story has a lot of stuff that people can relate to. So I wish a lot of people will watch it.
Name: Yoon Eun-hye
Date of birth: October 3, 1984
Education: Kyung Hee Cyber University
Former member of Baby V.O.X. (1999~2005)
Filmography: Escaping from Charisma (2006), MBC Princess Hours (TV, 2006), KBS The Man of the Vineyard (TV, 2006)
Awards: MBC Best New Actress (2006), KBS Best New Actress, Best Couple