This is Part 5/Final of my English translation of Jo Hyun Jae‘s interview which appeared in the Japanese magazine “Korean TV Dramas” (No. 66). The magazine was released in Japan this month. My translation is not verbatim.
Many, many thanks to Hiromi for typing out this interview. Without her help we wouldn’t have been able to read JHJ’s interesting revelations in this interview.
Thank you also to Kimy Kukuchan for sharing with me JHJ’s scanned photos from the magazine.
Let us talk about Jo Hyun Jae’s daily life.
Q21: What have you been doing lately?
JHJ: My thinking is that an actor should always be physically ready to start work anytime. Right now I am not working on any acting project, but I always keep myself ready in preparation for work. In the acting profession, physical strength is very important, so I have been exercising a lot. In Korea, we do a lot of all-day and all-night filming, so actors have to have lots of stamina. To be physically fit, I have to exercise daily.
Q22: What kind of exercise regimen do you follow?
JHJ: Well, I often go to the gym and I do a lot of mountain climbing. I think I have climbed almost all the mountains that are near my residence.
Q23: Some people say “why even bother climbing a mountain when you need to come down again?”
JHJ: That is just like asking “why even bother to live if you are going to die anyway?” hahaha. Please don’t get me wrong.
For me mountain climbing kills two birds with one stone.
I get to organize my thoughts while climbing and at the same time I get to maintain my diet.
In my opinion, mountain climbing is the most effective dieting I have ever done.
It is the best way to get rid of unwanted calories.
When I get tired during the climb I eat fruits, they are good enough to replenish my energy.
And then on my way down, I drink makgeolli (rice wine.)
Whenever I do these things, I can’t help but think that I am the happiest guy alive. (Laughs.)
Q24: Are you okay even if you go climbing alone?
JHJ: Yes. I can also take a road trip by myself. Whenever I feel like I want to see the sea, I take an early morning drive until I reach the seaside.
Q25: It seems you have an analog sensibility.
JHJ: I have been told that often because I don’t socialize that much nor do I visit downtown that much. (laughs)
Downtown is very strange to me. But, rather than go downtown to drink, mountain climbing would be much better for me.
I would also like to make a home up in the mountains, but I cannot do that because my work is in Seoul.
Q26: Do you go shopping much?
JHJ: I wear mostly training clothes at home. I think it has been 3 or 4 years since I last went shopping and bought something. Since I really don’t like shopping that much, whatever I buy I use it for a long time.
Q27: Do you have a message for your fans who have been waiting a long time for your next work.
JHJ: Because it took me such a long time to move to a new agency, I have to go through a long blank period unexpectedly.
I know that fans would like me to work again as soon as possible, I am impatient to start working as well, but even while on hiatus I have spent a meaningful time.
Because I was able to live a meaningful life during this period, I will be able to meet you again in much better form and various appearances. Please just wait a little more. I will see you in a good project.
END OF INTERVIEW
I absolutely love this whole interview! It was a bit difficult to translate because JHJ’s answers to some questions are quite long. But despite the difficulty, I still enjoyed translating it because JHJ revealed so much of his thoughts and feelings. The interviewer also deserves some credit for asking interesting questions that drew out long and revealing and funny replies from JHJ.
JHJ is so funny! Several times while translating this interview I had to stop translating because I was laughing so hard at JHJ’s answers.
JHJ may not be much of a talker (according to him), but he definitely is a man who thinks and feels deeply. JHJ’s personality may have changed a bit, but I am glad that he is still as honest, as down-to-earth, as guileless as he has always been.
Credit: Hiromi @ club.brokore.com/sodonyo for the Japanese transcript and Kimy Kukuchan for the scanned photo. Thanks!