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My Name Is: Kim Soo-hyun

Kim Soo-hyun: Strangely, I keep looking at you

While the night rain falls, children grow up before you know it. Kim Soo-hyun acted as the young Cha Kang-jin in SBS’s Will It Snow For Christmas, giving off an unfamiliar new vibe that made his Soo-hyun in MBC’s Kimchi Cheese Smile and Jae-ta of KBS’s Jungle Fish seem like faint memories.

With heavy eyelids and black eyes, rounded nose, and distinctly furrowed upper lip, the young man’s face was the same. But he showed a heat with his stare, posture, and stride that could not be that of a child. And when we met him again, slightly brighter in SBS’s Father’s House, the realization hit. A tender sprig had formed into a bud for the first time. Just growing in height cannot evoke that critical feeling that makes it impossible to take one’s eyes off him.

Even watching him off-camera, he gives off tension. He starts speaking with difficulty: “Actually, my mother… is what’s often said to be… that… she was a strong mother.” A very warm story unfolds as he tells how she guided him to take acting lessons with a theater company as a high schooler as a way of fixing a passive personality. He makes a pretty keen observation as he explains that he thinks his young appearance and deep voice are somewhat incongruous but that that image makes him appealing, and he tosses out a meaningful sentence: “Actually, um, my exterior and interior are different.” After listening to a question, he asks curiously without hesitation, “But what exactly does homme fatale mean?” and settles that with “Um, then that word is extremely fitting to Rain!”

His power to make others turn their attention to his words is Kim Soo-hyun’s hidden card, which he has cultivated unwittingly. “When I act, I try to bring my ambitions and worries to the character in an appealing way. He’s remarkable. He’s pretty memorable. Those are the kinds of things I’d like to hear. That’s why I immerse myself in my role, to have that push and pull with viewers through my stare or my voice.”

His candor in laying out serious words that could become lethal foretelling is naive. And when he explains, “The characters I play are also part Kim Soo-hyun — my starting place is from myself, so that a viewer would find him like Kim Soo-hyun,” we are given a clue into this character called Kim Soo-hyun, who is gradually coming into fruition both inside and outside of his work. At the intersection of Kang-jin and Soo-hyun, Jae-il and Jae-ta, there he is with his commanding expression and way of speech.

“In the future, I want work constantly for a while, without a break”

Perhaps he knows his growth has been greatly accelerated, as he reveals his hope, “In the future, I want to work constantly for a while, without a break.” With that said, he adds, “I’m sensitive to the word ‘youth.’ I’m in my youth right now. But, a girlfriend…” But before even ending that sentence, there is no mistaking his cheerful twenty-three-year-old playfulness as he pretends to wipe tears from his eyes. However, there’s a seriousness to his tone when he says, “Whatever the role, I want to try them all, but if I have the opportunity I’d like to do more roles like Kang-jin, masculine roles.” It’s also there when he says, “They say that children can act better because they do it without fear. But once you start becoming aware of your age, you start feeling more fear, and you can’t come charging in. I think I’m at that point,” pointing out the obstacle he will have to overcome.

That’s why even though Kim Soo-hyun is as unpredictable as ever, one can roughly estimate how much he will bloom. He says, “I’m a go-getter. Later on…” and pauses while grinning. “Hahaha. I almost said my dream is world domination!” He laughs it off, but they say one grows as much as one dreams.

 

My Name Is…

My name is Kim Soo-hyun. “Soo” means outstanding (秀), “Hyun” means benevolent (賢). There are some people who wonder why I don’t use a different name, since it’s the same as the famous scriptwriter… What would be better? Kim Soo-kyum? Kim… Kali? Hahahaha.

I was born on February 16, 1988. I’m an acting major at Joongang University.

I’m an only son, and at home I’m pretty untalkative. Still, when I’m surprised, I shout unthinkingly, “Mom!”

When I was in high school, I worked a part-time job for a fast-food restaurant. The timing didn’t match between the end of school and starting work and I was always late, so I was fired after three days. Still, I was paid for three days, and it was thrilling. There’s a saying that a child should buy his parents socks with a first paycheck, so I bought my mother socks… but she didn’t wear them. I should have bought her something with lace.

I learned how to rock climb once. I was in high school, and I even went out to a competitive meet, climbing natural rock. But I was eliminated in the second round when I fell… I learned skin scuba diving too. I tried experiencing sports that would be difficult to do in everyday life.

When I was on MBC’s Kimchi Cheese Smile, I wasn’t worried about taking off my shirt when I heard about the swimming parts. But when we started filming, the other hyungs — phew — had ripped abs and built bodies, and I was shocked. In particular, (Jang) Ji-woo hyung was so built he was called a mannequin. I hear that when he served in the military, he got a special grade for his physical exam.

In SBS’s Will It Snow For Christmas, the scene I’m most fond of is the one at the school faucets where I tell Yoon-ju, “I’m not interested in you, but strangely I keep looking at you.” When I shot that scene, the director and lighting director teased me, saying, “Wow, it’s [legendary actor] Shin Sung-il!” but it made me feel good. My mother’s favorite scene is the one where Kang-jin is painfully rejected by Ji-wan when she’s wearing mourning clothes.

When I shot the scene where Kang-jin walks barefoot, the director deliberately scattered stones in the road. He wanted me to step on them, to feel that pain. His intention was to capture the moment those feelings appeared on my face naturally, but my manager hyung was fidgeting because I might get hurt.

A scene I’m a little disappointed in is in Episode 2, when Kang-jin touches his foot and looks at the moon. The camera shot me in a full shot from behind, but I was slumped over, like it was a bad habit. When I saw that at home, I was a little saddened and thought, Arg, why did I do that!

Before filming SBS’s Father’s House, I was pretty nervous. I’d be acting with Choi Min-soo sunbae-nim, Baek Il-sub, and Park Won-sook, and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to breathe. But they all took good care of me, and in particular Baek Il-sub helped a lot by explaining Jae-il’s situation to me rather than just indicating how the acting should go. I really learned a lot.

Choi Min-soo sunbae-nim knew I’d stiffened up and really took efforts to help me relax. [Lowering his voice] “Wanna learn kumdo?” he’d ask and start conversation. On the set, while I’d be talking with the director, he’d play around and poke me from behind, then pretend it wasn’t him. But when he acts, he gets into it completely. At the script reading, he said, “I don’t want to appear like an actor who is acting, but I’ll approach this drama to give off the feelng that you’re watching Human Theater. I’ll become that person.”

Time flies when I’m at home, lost in thought. I’m not great at it, but I write when I’m alone. I watch movies. I especially like Jo Seung-woo, Ha Jung-woo, and Ryu Seung-beom sunbae-nims, and they have a lot of the elements that I like in actors.

I don’t think I have distinct preferences. I like hip-hop music, trance, ballads — I don’t differentiate between genres. When I sing, I’ll do a ballad, and then a hardcore song. Haha.

My emotions tend to fluctuate, but whether I’m feeling happy or sad, rather than hiding everything I feel insisde, I like to work them off and get rid of them entirely. That’s why when I feel good, I might give all my money to a beggar, and when I’m depressed I feel lost in my emotions and think I want to die. I like crying, so when I see the line “tears flow” in a script it makes me happy, because I can exhaust those emotions and cast them off.

I like taking photographs. At the time of Kimchi Cheese Smile, Lee Byung-jin sunbae-nim’s camera was so cool, and I learned a lot watching him. Right now I use a Nikon D800, which I got really cheap secondhand, thanks to Lee Byung-jin sunbae.

I really love taking photos when it snows a lot like it has recently. It’s easy to attach sentiment to a simple footprint, saying, “Looks great!” Hahaha.

But, doesn’t it always snow on Christmas? I think a white Christmas is a given. What did I do last Christmas? Um… so… well… I went to a noraebang with friends. Heh.

Via 10 Asia, Part 2

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Soo cute!

Thanks for posting!

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can't wait to see him act in a new drama

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omg. i love him so much. y is he so cute???? APSIJFPOSIDJFODSFS

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Does he has any girlfren?

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love love love!

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I really hope to see him in a drama...soon I hope. He was really memorable.
Thank you for posting this interview ^.^

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so cute. i really like him in will it snow for christmas, he was good as the young kang jin. and it was a sweet story about how his mom got him into acting.

i hope he gets good projects soon!

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what site did you watched "Will It Snow For Chrismas"?

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something about him in Christmas made me think of a younger kim kang woo.

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so deliciously adorable this boy!!

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@6 sunny,

you're right! he does remind me of a younger kim kang woo, who's totally SEXY in his own right <333.

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I'm still haunted by his line ''dirua, pendant dirua!'' -- which he shouts out by the riverside.
So talented and handsome *swoon*, can't wait to see him in more drama!

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He is SO gorgeous, so awesome. He gives off that intensity through his words as much as his acting, but he's also playful and fun and his smile is surprising. As a mature actor he'll be a heartbreaker. <3

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CUTE, BEAUTIFUL and dead GORGEOUS. This are the 3 words i find to describe him!!! Love your smile... Can you smile only for me? Please.... I am anxious to see him again on a new drama. =P

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He reminds me more of Park Ki Woong than Kim Kang Woo

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OMG I loved him in Kimchee, there was an eppy where he was going to confess to this girl that he liked her and then he saw her with another guy and ran away crying her name. The scene was so heartbreaking but you couldn't help but laugh. XD

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this is really exciting,,i'm seeing more and more of korean male beauties..
:D

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He has an intensity that a lot of younger actors lack, I like it. It's like he knows who he is an isn't afraid of it...it's definitely hot.

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Thanks so much for the interview!

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Okay, he's super adorable. (And not much older than meeeeeeeee~ Bwahahaha.)

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Totally scattered interview but he seems like a nice kid! Looking forward to him in the future.

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Excellent interview! Why am I not surprised to learn that he is in real life an intense young man? Definitely one to watch!

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So cute. Putting him in my pocket!

The idea that Choi Min Soo plays around, pokes him and act that it wasn't him... put a smile to my face. Its always sweet to know that sunbae, takes the time to break ice with juniors...

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he's 23???
he's definitely one who's been playing wayyyy younger roles. aren't there bunches of 20 year olds out there who aren't playing the "child actor"?
but whatever. he's cute(:
(haha for a second i was thinking what? my name is kim sam soon???)

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i like him :) he doesn't seem fake or anything...just kinda normal (except really cute!)

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KSH.......
he like popped out of nowhere but WOW! I loooove him!

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can't wait till he leads a drama!!

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woot Kim So Hyun so yummy....definitely looking forward for his next project. thank you Sarah for this post ^ ^

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I swear... he is sooo yummy! Hahaha! *Coughs!* What I was trying to say was... he is very smexy and manly sexy! I definitely like! Just like some of you... I can't wait until he get the lead role. =D

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OMO.. a RISSING star. He has such an amazing talent. He acted soo well in WISFC.

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Well, this actor won me over in Will It Snow For Christmas. It's as simple as that :P I can't believe he's a 1988 though o___0 He's my little sister's age...

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i do not understand. do these people actually EXIST?! it's not possible. something must have been fabricated here.
such perfection is..

impossible, i do dare declare!

where can i get a kim soo hyun? ._.

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AWEEEEE, aigoo, he's so cute :). btw, is there a fan club for him?

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He's 4 days younger than me... but OMG, is he deliciously mature and hot or what?? His name is soo perfect too and it'll probably be my fav name soon. My fav name right now is Hyun Soo.. LOL.. cuz of Smile You and Love Marriage!!

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"What did I do last Christmas? Um… so… well… I went to a noraebang with friends. Heh."

LOL. He is such a cutie, and he doesn't even sound like a 23 year old.

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wow he's deep!!

I hoping to see get cast as a main charater!!

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How impressive! I enjoyed reading all of this interview of Kim Soo-Hyun, heh!

I didn't noticed that Kim Soo-Hyun seems like he's a newbie actor but I can't believe that he's already 22 yrs. old, eh?? I thought he seem soo young like as 16 or 17 yrs old, lolz!
Ooo! I am curiously that if Kim Soo-Hyun would able to get another new dramas someday!! Oh yeaa. (nods & smirks)

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He captured my heart in WISFC...as well as the young girl..i think he's one of the most promising young actor korea has....i wish him all the luck and more projects to come...

i think characters like kangjin does suit him best...i haven't watched his other dramas yet but will soon get to thm...

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This guy is a keep an eye on... he was so amazing in Will it Snow on Christmas... I couldn't keep my eyes off him. I still want to watch his mini drama Father's House... He's going to become a GREAT actor. I can see it already and he's so cute...

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oh my golly!! he is super hot!! gosh!! i can' take my eyes out of him! his naturally sexy!!

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I am seriously in love with this boy.....

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just realize he is the same age as me, borned in 88.cool!

first seen him in Giant, thought he was superb with his 'revenge' character then Dream High, the dude can sing and dance?!?

definitely have to check him out in the future. thanks for sharing. :)

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i love you Kim soo hyun :')

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I Like you a lot Kim Soo Hyun...
you sure are fun to talk with...

hope he can achieve what he really want...
and what makes him happy...

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Song Sam Dong! lol

Very glad he's getting the recognition he deserves.

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aaah..yippie..i found the old you..finally..
soo hyun-aah... saranghae..
actually the reporter description about soo-hyun was so good..

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you are awesome actor!! thank you keep up the good work !!:)

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I love this article! It's so well written!

I now have a growing fascination over Kim Soo-hyun and feel that he's going to be EPIC. Who knows, kid, world domination is a drama or two away!

I'm pleasantly surprised that he had exposure to theater at an early age. This makes him a pliant clay mold of which he can shape out the characters that he plays.

Will now go on a Soo-hyun backtrack to WISFC etc. while anticipating his fantasy-saeguk drama The Moon Embracing The Sun in January 2012.

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and now hes the king

really popular

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saranghae soohyun oppa.......^_^

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Heh, world domination..? Well Soo Hyun you certainly have domination of Asia checked off.. Came upon this article and totally amused me at how he got what he wanted.. especially the work with no break part, since everything he touches turns to gold now XD

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Looking back on this interview... Just wow, all his dreams have really come true, huh?

Some of you were so spot on with your predictabilities.

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