Jo Hyun Jae fans are really very supportive of one another, especially when it comes to showing our love and support for JHJ. Yesterday I requested a bigger and clearer picture of JHJ’s KWave interview because I could not read the ones already posted. Today, my wish has been granted by Korean fan 푸른날. Thanks!
The interview appeared in both Hangul and English in the magazine, below are captures of the English translation from the magazine. I am typing it out for other international fans so they can easily translate it to their own language.
There are some grammatical errors and some awkward sentence construcion in the original version so I edited the article a bit for easier understanding. There are also some answers which are difficult to understand (must be a problem with the translation), so I added my analysis of JHJ’s answers.
Update: I updated this post after checking out the Korean-Chinese translation by ドラミ1987 on JHJ/Baidu. The red text are the parts which I changed because they make more sense than the English version from the magazine.
PURENESS RESEMBLING NATURE
On Jeju Island, with the slightly moistened earth, the upright trees almost reaching the sky, and the widely spreading sea making our heart nice and cool, we met a man, Jo Hyun Jae, who resembles nature.
Comment: I love their description of JHJ. With just the title alone they have already captured JHJ’s essence.
PROLOGUE AND 1ST PART OF INTERVIEW
There was heavy rainfall on the day of the photo shoot. Looking up at the sky, it seemed there is no possibility that the rain would stop. While we were worrying what we should do, JHJ arrived at the hotel. He said hello to the 7 staff members whom he first met upon arriving. Showing a little bit of nervousness, he looked around and asked the staff, “Is this room for me?” The plain figure of an actor with a clear-cut handsome face made us feel that he is humane and cute as well.
The nine staff and Jo Hyun Jae conversed for a bit while looking out at the rain which is quite refreshing as it falls down. Based on the conversation shared among the staff such as “outdoor shooting might be difficult owing to heavy rainfall” or “we are going to get the good scenes if we conduct the outdoor shooting as we planned”, we finally decided to do the outdoor shooting. After finishing a light meal of coffee and sandwich, we got ready to start shooting. As we were coming out, ready with everything including raincoats, the rain stopped just like magic. Jo Hyun Jae, he is a man of luck who drives the sunshine in.
Comment: I agree with the last sentence. 😀 It is so true! From my own experience, just looking at JHJ’s pictures is enough to make a dark and gloomy day bright.
The earth was wet, somewhat muddy, but the shooting progressed more easily than we expected. He made several poses for the camera while he felt awkward by paying attention to his appearance, saying that “this style is new to me because I haven’t worn this type of costume before.” Occasionally, the staff were unable to hide their feelings, they would shout “too beautiful for words”, JHJ would look away with an embarrassed smile. The costume is simple at minimum level without accessories such as rings, bracelets or necklaces. Since the backdrop for the shooting is nature, it should be enough as props. We went through Saryeoni Forest, Saryeoni Forest Lane and Hamduck/Hamdeok Beach for the shooting. The final shooting was at the hotel, after which he sat across me for the interview.
QUESTION 1 (Q1): Even though the rain stopped before we started, shooting today was harder than usual, wasn’t it?
JO HYUN JAE (JHJ): No, it wasn’t. Luckily the rain stopped when we were so worried about the heavy rainfall before the shooting. I think the rainfall created a more delicate mood. It was really fun to shoot today because I like nature a lot.
Q2: You have not visited Jeju Island for a while, have you?
JHJ: It has been 11 years since I last visited here. When I came here in the past, after I finished working on a drama, I travelled around using scooters with Ryu Seung Beom. This time when I came to Jeju Island, I was fluttering with joy due to those good memories in mind. But when I landed at the airport, it was raining. (Laughs) 😀
Editor: Ryu Seung Beom is JHJ’s co-star in the drama “Sunshine Pours Down” (SBS, 2004)
CONTINUATION OF INTERVIEW AND EPILOGUE
Q3: You said you like nature. Which do you prefer between mountain and sea?
JHJ: I like climbing mountains a lot. It makes me grow healthy. Whenever I find time I try to go up to the mountains. I often go up to the mountains near my house like Kwanak Mountain, Cheongye Mountain and Woomyeon Mountain. I also wanted to climb Halla Mountain. Unfortunately, our schedule is too short, so cannot go there. What a pity. (Editor: The last 3 sentences, in red, are not included in the English version, but are included in the Korean text. Halla Mountain is a mountain on Jeju Island.)
Comment: Now we have narrowed down the area where to search for the elusive and reclusive JHJ. 😀
Q4: Any special reason for going up to the mountains?
JHJ: Well, it’s because the mountain is there? (Laughs awkwardly) 😀
Q5: I would like to ask a question to the actor Jo Hyun Jae who is now 36 years old. What is acting for you?
JHJ: It is really a difficult question. I think an actor with a career like Choi Min Shik can answer for this question. How can I answer for it? Hmmmm (pausing, pondering for a little while) I would like to say that acting is “a thing to want to be genuine”. Only heartful acting can touch the audience, make the audience laugh and cry. I can’t explain it in style because I feel I am still lacking as an actor.
Editor: For the answer to Q5 I think JHJ is saying that he is not the best person to answer the question on what is acting because he feels that he has not yet achieved much as an actor. He feels that only an actor who has already achieved so much in his acting career, Choi Min Shik for example, would be the best person to answer the question. But JHJ tries to give an answer anyway. I think “a thing to want to be genuine” means that for JHJ, acting is something where he should strive to be genuine. For JHJ, acting that comes from the heart is the kind of acting that would move audiences to either laugh or cry or whatever emotion should be evoked by a particular scene. Hmmm, I think, even though JHJ feels he is inadequate to answer the question, he still gave a very good answer, an answer that comes from his heart.
Q6: What is your plan for 2015?
JHJ: I would like to meet the audience with my new appearance. I have changed a lot since I have entered my thirties. I am taking a diet which I have never tried before while I was in my twenties and I am doing exercises everyday for my health. Because of these [changes], I think I can show you different appearances compared to before, aside from changes in outer appearance. Something like an experienced actor suited to my current age. I hope you can expect something different from actor Jo Hyun Jae. Thank you.
Editor: The English translation of JHJ’s answer to Q6 is a bit difficult to understand, so let me share with you my understanding of the answer. I think JHJ is saying that now that he is in his thirties he has already matured emotionally and physically. He hopes to show his emotional and physical maturity by taking on roles that are different from the roles he has portrayed in the past. Roles which are more suitable to an actor of his age and experience.
Epilogue: JHJ thinks about his characters over and over again to get himself into his role. People around him comment with sincerity on JHJ’s work ethic, they say he works really hard. However, JHJ says that he would already be satisfied if he could show better acting by working hard that way. I learned through the interview that Jo Hyun Jae has crystal clear eyes and a calm heart, happy to hear compliments, a humane actor. The next move of a man who is now 36 years old and who is standing at a new starting line is something to look forward to.
Editor: The writer keeps using the word “humane” to describe JHJ. “Humane” means “having or showing compassion or benevolence”. Its synonyms are: compassionate, kind, considerate, tender, gentle, warmhearted, softhearted, tenderhearted.
Credit: Captures of the interview transcript shared by 푸른날 on her FB account.; other photos from CarpeDiem Japan; Korean to Chinese translation by ドラミ1987 from JHJ/Baidu. Thanks!