“Acting is very interesting. Through Rooftop Prince, I was happy to know how interesting it could be when expressing the character.”
The JYJ member, the fore-runner of the Korean Wave and the idol member who send fans from all over the world into a frenzy – Park Yoochun. He is also called an ‘actor’. Among the ‘acting-dols’ (idols who act) who we can easily see in dramas, Park Yoochun is really unequaled. Comparing to other ‘acting-dols’, or rather the standards of other actors, Park Yoochun’s acting is really good. It is amazing as he is originally a singer.
Park Yoochun was different from the start. In his first acting appearance in Sungkyunkwan Scandal (2010), he showed his acting ability. In the following year, he acted in Miss Ripley and the SBS drama Rooftop Prince that has just completed its broadcast recently. In all three dramas, his acting ability was so superb that people wonder if he was originally an actor.
Now, Park Yoochun has gotten the ‘taste’ of acting properly. In just three dramas, we cannot say if his experience came early or late. Through Rooftop Prince, he has strengthened his position as an actor firmly and got to experience the ‘taste’ of acting completely. Now, it is the start of feeling the fun and happiness of acting. It is clear that actor Park Yoochun will show even better performances in the future. So, we will wait even longer to see him again.
“Rooftop Prince is a drama that I have relied on and received comfort from.”
– While acting in Rooftop Prince, you have received favourable reviews?
It is not because my acting is good; rather I think my personal experiences were shown through my acting. I really felt that experiences help in it. As I have experienced crying bitterly before, it was possible for me to cry in scenes like that. I think I used a lot of personal experiences as a basis in this drama. When encountering another dramas, I also feel nervous as I face limitations. So now, I want to experience many things since I have the ability and time to do it. Even if I am out having a meal, I am a person who always observes people’s small movements.
– In your view, what kind of drama is Rooftop Prince?
It was a drama that I have a lot of affection for. I think I only found out how much love I have for the drama after it was completed. I had affection for the drama itself, but it was a drama that had meaning for Lee Gak and myself. Although I had many shortcomings, I was glad that I was able to act more naturally as compared to the previous drama and immerse into the role of Lee Gak. Also, it was a drama that I have depended on. Since I had plunged into the drama, I was able to act and I received comfort for what I had been experiencing at that point in time. I only recognized it after the drama had ended.
– Rooftop Prince clinched the first place in viewers’ rating of the Wednesday-Thursday dramas at the last moment. What is the secret to its success?
When I received the script for episode 19 and 20, I really felt the longing that Lee Gak (Park Yoochun) and Park Ha (Han Ji Min) had for each other. So, I could act in a realistic way. Actually, when I was reading the script for the last episode, I was hoping that the viewers’ ratings would overturn. Although Rooftop Prince is a fantasy drama, it appeals to anyone who has experienced longing. It was not simply a sad episode for viewers; rather it was a last episode that viewers could cry while watching it together.
– Are you able to break free from the character Lee Gak since you are so immersed in it?
I think I will be able to break free from the role naturally as time passes. I am very thankful to the character. I really feel that Lee Gak is a close friend of mine. I am actually more amazed to find out that I can feel this kind of emotion and feeling from a character in a drama.
– Do Lee Gak’s way of speaking and actions show even though you don’t notice them?
Since the start of the drama, I was troubled by Lee Gak’s way of speaking, pace and dynamics. Among all his actions, I have adopted the action of clasping the hands behind the back and it shows even on a regular day. As I feel comfortable with it, it became natural. I have been clasping my hands behind my back more than I did before. When I walk with my arms beside my body, I feel that they dangle. I have become more conscious of them.
“I just went with it. There were no sense of burden and worry.”
– It seems that you have more affection for Rooftop Prince than your previous drama.
Rooftop Prince was very different from Miss Ripley due to start of the drama shooting and my mental attitude. I felt a huge sense of burden while filming for Miss Ripley. I had little time to prepare and I felt pressure, as I had to act well in this drama just like what I had done in Sungkyunkwan Scandal. I had no confidence in myself. So, I even said that I couldn’t do it during the first shooting. Luckily, I was able to recompose myself and complete the filming till the end. During the start of Rooftop Prince filming, I never once thought that I should do well in it. It was just “Let’s act!”. I just went with it. I didn’t have a sense of burden where I told myself that had to do well. I wasn’t worried if I was able to do it or not. While I was filming like that, I felt that acting was really fun. Through Rooftop Prince, I was happy to know how interesting it could be when expressing the character.
– You had to act as two different characters in the historical and modern times. Were there any difficulties?
As I had many different scenes, I had to focus more since it could falter if I missed even an hour of filming. The most difficult scenes were those with Yong Tae Yong. Lee Gak and Yong Tae Yong’s dialogues and paces were different. So, I found it hard to act as Yong Tae Yong since I had become familiar with acting as Lee Gak. Even if it was Yong Tae Yong, it wasn’t 100% him as Lee Gak imitated Yong Tae Yong. Occasionally, the look in my eyes had to change sharply, so it was hard for me to get into the character in the first half of the drama.
– Between Lee Gak and Yong Tae Yong, who is more similar to you in reality?
It is ambiguous. Yong Tae Yong is a free-spirited person who does things naturally. On the other hand, Lee Gak is a person who is brought up in a confined environment. My liberalism and optimism are more similar to Yong Tae Yong. I think my situation is like Lee Gak after I have become a celebrity. So, I had learned about the sense of responsibility from Lee Gak.