The charity event, “Smile Project” at Tokyo Dome in Japan. Meet Bae Yong Joon.
[Money Today Star News Tokyo (Japan) = Reporter Kim Hyun Rok]
He just came down from the stage after he met over 30,000 fans at Tokyo Dome. Bae Yong Joon (38) was definitely “Yonsama” when he was smiling and waving with a composed demeanor from about 50m distance. But he is a totally different person when he falls into a chair after he changes from a suit to a cardigan. Was I the only one surprised when he asked us first, “Did you eat something?”, with his eyes wide open even though he was tired?
The interview started when we sat around the table in the waiting room. He gradually started looking like Bae Yong Joon from “Yonsama” when the interview went on. He passed off uncomfortable questions well, and went about sensitive issues appropriately. But he didn’t avoid the critical issues. The interview time took over 40 minutes until he stood up when someone from his agency kept bugging him that the staff of Tokyo Dome couldn’t go home because of us.
When he said, “I had fun. Didn’t you?”, I was really serious when I only nodded even though I couldn’t say “Yes.”
- A while ago, you suddenly untied your tie for donation, and you look so fresh and casual.
▶ Somehow, I was really sorry for them. Time went so fast, and I couldn’t do a lot. So I did unexpectedly. I haven’t had a chance to see that film yet.
- Why you didn’t speak Japanese the whole time until the end? You only spoke Japanese at the end of the event.
▶ Because, I’m not good at it. The reason I spoke Japanese today is because I came here as a representative of Korea.
- What was your feeling when you got all of the attention from 30,000 audiences on the stage?
▶ I can feel a warmth around my eyes, rather than shed tears, when I’m touched or feel a warm heart. Please don’t say that I cried (he laughs). I can express that feeling through my eyes when I feel a warm heart.
- It was your first stage with Kim Hyun Joong. What kind of person is Kim Hyun Joong when you see him in person?
▶ He is very enthusiastic and innocent. Actually, I’m sometimes motivated because of him. A while ago, I heard from him about his dream and passion, and I become enthusiastic again since then. He is truly a desirable young man.
- The fans says that you two look alike and there are pictures comparing the two of you.
▶ I really appreciate that. When I shot “TWSSG”, someone told me that I, in the picture without glasses, was similar to Kim Hyun Joong. I was very happy to hear that (laugh).
- You have returned to the shooting sites for “Dream High” after a long time. How do you feel?
▶ The atmosphere is very good. The producers are working very hard and even the cast members are working hard with great enthusiasm even though they are young. I returned to shooting after being gone for a long time and I’m trying to work like a newcomer.
- You don’t work as an actor often.
▶ Please talk to my manager about that. They are the ones who don't bring me work. I don’t care what kind of work it is. I’m not picky on the role. I don’t care whether it is a drama or movie.
- Is it difficult for you to choose because of your perfectionism?
▶ Not really.
- What made you work with Park Jin Young?
▶ We spoke with each other about our dreams to someone. That person said, “How come two of you have a very similar dream?” That made us come together.
Jin Young ssi works within the areas related to music and choreography. I also help the directors, writer, and young actors at the location. - Can you tell me in detail which parts matched?
▶ I didn’t receive any professional education. I have been thinking that we would like to have a professional school that produces entertainers. Actually I dream to establish that kind of school. Meanwhile, we have the same thought, “Then, how about making a drama?” That is a part we both matched.
In the beginning, we had an idea that Bae Yong Joon appears as Bae Yong Joon, and Park Jin Young appears as Park Jin Young. It’ll be a lot of fun even though our idea didn’t work out.
- Are you really interested in working in education?
▶ I expressed my thought repeatedly. I’m most interested in the environmental and educational issues.
- You became Yonsama from an actor, and now you are changing your position to train and support your junior colleagues.
▶ We are heading in too deep of a direction... You’re right. It seems that I just follow the passage of time, not making something unwillingly. It’s true that I was confused a bit and I felt some emptiness in a weak moment. I was motivated by Hyun Joon’s enthusiasm. Don’t you agree with me? Please don’t write it down seriously.
- Are you depressed?
▶ Any one has that. All modern men have depression.
- Do you have any issues or concerns? If so, what is it?
▶ I had lots of problems. I don’t think it will be resolved soon. It’s my personal problem. Of course it’s the same as others. It’s the matter of how to accept and overcome from it. I think I will be able to overcome from it. - How do you relieve stress?
▶ I haven't been able to find a relief yet. I felt pressure since I stay home a lot. I would like having soil beneath my feet, so I wanted to move to the countryside. My manager thought that I might dig through the ground and start farming. So I didn’t look around house, but my manger did.
- There was a rumor that you purchased the house to marry someone in 2011.
▶ That’s why I told you before. (Bae Yong Joon said to his fans, “Please introduce a girl to me.) I rarely go out, so I don’t have opportunities. But the marriage rumors kept floating around. Maybe, it is the time to get married. If I marry, then I’ll release the story.
- Your sister is already married and you have a nephew.
▶ I like children and enjoy playing with them. I want to marry, but it’s not my choice.
- Are you close to Lee Na Young? There was marriage rumor from the stock market.
▶ Na Young appeared in the drama, “Have we really loved?” as my younger sister. I wonder where those rumors are coming from. It’s really weird. Before, I had wine with a make-up artist and Song Hye Kyo. But there was an article saying that I met Lee Ji Ah instead at night. So I said, “Apparently, you don't really exist, Hye Kyo.” (laugh).
- Is there any reason you purchased your house this late?
▶ People are coming to look around the house because it is a leased house. (Everyone laughed) I couldn’t refuse them even though it was very uncomfortable with me. There are no other reasons for it. Wind can’t come in and it’s a closed space. I would like to take steps on the ground. Moving makes everyone difficult, and the owner wants to raise the rental costs often. (laugh) I might not feel the need to move.
- Do you like any girls’ band? Who is your favorite band?
▶ I guess you want to drive me to be an "uncle fan." (laugh) I saw them a lot while I’m preparing “Dream High. They are pretty and cute. Who is my favorite band? Hmm... Taec Yeon of 2PM? (Taec Yeon is the one of the main casts of “Dream High”.)
- I heard that you have a karaoke machine in your house. Why are you not singing at the event?
▶ Because I can’t sing well. (laugh) I wanted to practice singing, so I bought the machine. I think I can sing well after I drink, but it’s hard when I sing at home. It’s hard to hear myself singing. Hmm... like that... I’ll try again. Hyun Joong told me he would teach me how to dance. (Everyone is quiet.)
- Then, can we see you dance sometime soon?
▶ I hope so, but I can’t dance well. It’s a bit embarrassing. But I have had thoughts about it. It looks so smooth for singers and dancers when they lift or stretch their hands over their shoulders. I thought that I might be able to do it if I dance.
- You get so much love from Japan. Aren’t you relatively frustrated in Korea? It may not be an issue to compare.
▶ Then, why do you ask that kind of question? (Laugh) I received the same question last time. I’m popular in Korea too.. (laugh)