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Title Interview with Lee Jun-ki (July 6, 2007), Played the role of Lee Soo-hyun in MBC's Time Between Dog and Wolf (TV)
Upate 2008-02-21 15:02

"Time Between Dog and Wolf" is about the romance of three characters who are tangled in a love triangle.

With a strong pretty boy image, Lee Jun-ki plays a secret agent who infiltrates a drug gang to avenge the death of his mother in the MBC TV miniseries "Time Between Dog and Wolf" (Writers: Han Ji-hoon, Ryu Yong-jae, Director: Kim Jin-min). His character, Lee Soo-hyun, is a government agent, and Lee Jun-ki will try to successfully take on an gritty role. Lee Jun-ki sports a crew cut and handles his own stunts in the miniseries. Premiering on July 18, 2007,"Time Between Dog and Wolf" will show Lee Jun-ki playing a much different role this time.

- Tell us more about your character.

My character sees his mother get killed by a hitman hired by a drug gang and lives with that memory for the rest of his life. He constantly thinks about revenge and when he becomes a government agent, he finds a chance to exact revenge from his mother's killer. You can say that he's a tragic character but the story is fast-paced and interesting.

- What were your first impressions of the role when it was offered to you?

I liked the script when I read it but I found my character to be a headache. Playing a complicated character like Soo-hyun is not easy and I had doubts about whether I could handle it. After I accepted the role, I was overwhelmed with the difficulties in playing Soo-hyun. Before we began shooting the miniseries, I had drinks with the director and cast members where I asked everyone to give me some slack and help me because my character was a challenge to play. I found it comfortable to work alongside friendly people on the set. It helped reduced the pressure I felt. I'm gritting my teeth to look as confident as possible in my role. I'll do my best to portray my character as a really cool guy.

- What do you find charming about your character?

Well, it's a hard character to play - especially the emotional scenes where I have to make a transition from a tough guy to a guy in touch with his emotions. My character saw his mother die in front of him and he lives with that trauma all his life. Then he finds the person who killed his mother. So I have to portray flashes of anger, which was something I kind of liked in my role. It's challenging but at the same time, I'm learning new things and that makes it interesting. So those are the things that are charming about my role. I'm constantly trying to get in touch with my character during every scene.

- How are you trying to reinvent yourself as an actor after appearing in the King and the Clown?

It's an urgent matter for an actor to break away from a lingering image formed by a previous role. You don't want to be typecast into specific roles. That's probably the most difficult part about being an actor. After appearing in a great role in King and the Clown, I've been deliberately taking on different roles to reshape my image. And that has somehow been holding me back in my career and creating a mental barrier. In this miniseries, I'm just going to concentrate on playing my character like I did in the King and the Clown and try to block out all the extraneous stuff. I'm thinking about having a good time on the set this time. I don't feel any kind of pressure nowadays and my only worry is how to assume the subtle nuances of my character.

- How does it feel to return to a miniseries after last appearing in the hit TV show My Girl?

It makes me a bit nervous. Of course I feel nervous when I act in movies. But when you're shooting a TV miniseries, it's a completely different format. Gyeong-ho and actress Nam Sang-mi have more experience in this department so I'm basically playing catch-up with them. I'm trying to overcome my experience deficit in this area and it's a source of some stress. I wish I could adapt to the format as quickly as possible so that I can focus on acting.

- Do you have any special moments that you remember while shooting on location in Thailand?

it was a wonderful experience as soon as we touched down in Thailand. We had to shoot a lot of difficult actions scenes in Thailand so I remember every one of them. Every episode was so challenging and difficult so I would be hard pressed to say that any of them were special moments. I had to wade through a sewer tunnel for hours and even swallowed some of the sewage inadvertently. Gyeong-ho, who was also in the scene, and I threw up while we shot that scene. I really didn't want to go into the sewer system. I was totally spent after that shoot. I also spent about 10 hours shooting the Muay Thai boxing scene. I'm always full of energy when we shoot action scenes but boxing drained all the energy out of me and I even twisted my ankle in the ring. We had so many more action scenes to shoot so I was upset that I got injured early on. But I had a wonderful time in Thailand and the new experiences I had there will always remain as cherished memories.

- How have you prepared for this role?

I think the most important aspect of this miniseries is to understand the plot as well as possible and try to immerse myself in all the finer points of the story. I'm very interested in action scenes and I have regular training sessions. I'm not familiar with stories about crime and drug lords so I've been watching a lot of gangster movies lately to get a better feel of such material. For instance, the first episodes of our drama share similarities with the Hong Kong film Infernal Affairs, so I watched how the actors in that film acted and it gave me insights on how to act when I?m in such a scene. But later on I found other traits that I wanted to convey in my character and so watching Infernal Affairs was a bad idea because it just left me confused on which direction to take. When you try to emulate a certain scene from another movie, it could backfire and just put everything off balance. When you try different approaches in your acting, it can get a bit heavy. But I was able to quickly find my direction. If you try to do too much, you'll end up losing your balance.

- Profile

Date of birth: April 17, 1982
Education: Hanseo University (transfer student)
Filmography: King and the Clown (2005), Fly, Daddy, Fly (2006), May 18, 2007 (2007), My Girl (2005, TV miniseries) and other works
Awards: Most Popular Foreign Actor, 10th Shanghai International Film Festival (2007)