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Jang Geun-suk, "I'm living a 'Happy Life'".

2007/09/06 | 967 views | Permalink | Source

The movie "The Happy Life" directed by Lee Joon-ik draws the story of three normal men in their forties who reunite to form a rock band and rediscover their dreams. Amongst the three normal looking men with exceptional acting skills is one youthful and lively actor, Jang Geun-suk.

Jang Geun-suk who in the movie grew into an adult still had a hint of his youthful image in person.

While Director Lee Joon-ik's comment saying he restricted the screen time of Jang Geun-suk so female viewers wouldn't just focus on him, his charisma as the son of the former vocalist of the band Hyun Joon grabbed the heart of viewers with his good looks, picture perfect guitar skills, and surprisingly good vocals.

He takes on an important role as not just bringing youthful vibes to the movie but also as an important link between the older and younger generations.

Jang Geun-suk who says the question he received most after the movie's premiere was whether he really sang the song actually is experienced with two musical productions. Director Lee Joon-ik who was with us during the interview says, "It is like I am the child and Geun-seok is the adult", and nonetheless Jang Geun-suk's serious and skillful speech grasped my attention.

"Being so young, I contemplated a lot while acting Hyun Joon to be in more scenes. The scene using the restroom with senior Kim Sang Ho was one I created so the audience could better understand Hyun Joon. He tells me that I look the same as my father, and that is the moment I first picture the true father Hyun Joon never could understand before. I thought the audience would feel the fathers' love for their children through the scene".

Jang Geun-suk says the film shoot itself was a precious experience to him commenting, "All three of them were my mentors. They all live with their dreams. Having a lot or little money does not matter. They have the confidence and flexibility in regards to life not from being a star that everyone thinks of them as, but rather as ones who have achieved their dreams. They would practice all night, have a drink, and go out in slippers and grab something to eat".

He says the movie "The Happy Life" is one that asks, 'Are you living and doing what you want to do? Or are you living and doing what you have to do?' and that is the question that dominated his head throughout the filming.

"I started acting in middle school. It was my decision. Then one day I asked myself, 'Jang Geun-suk, are you happy right now?' and realized I was climbing stairs with no particular goal and no composure. I asked around about what a happy life is and asked my seniors as well. Of course there is not right answer, but thankfully I have found a little bit of composure in myself. And now I can enjoy things, at least to the point I can smell the scent of fall outside of the window". He seemed to be quite pleased in learning something priceless from Director Lee Joon-ik and the three other senior actors.

The movie features a father who works day and night to pay for private lessons and education for a talented son, and a father who sends off his child and wife abroad to study but ends up facing a divorce. They all live amidst self-gratification, or excuses, saying it is all for their children, and this is not much different from parents in the real world today.

I asked Jang Geun-suk who is still in the position of being a parent's child what he wanted from his parents. He says that his parents, while not fully approving when he said he wanted to act, supported him by telling him to do what he wanted to do.

"Are children truly happy when they achieve the social status their parents want them to? They all just go towards the one goal forgetting whether it was the parent's dream or the child's dream. I wish parents would trust their children and let them pursue what they want to. If only they could understand that children wander in their youth not because they don't know what to do, but they are struggling and trying hard to find what fits them. I believe everything is about the 'trust' between the parent and child".
In that sense, he says, "The movie "The Happy Life" can serve to be a meaningful opportunity to reflect on life with all the fantasies and reality barriers set aside between a father and son".

Jang Geun-suk is also chasing a dream.

"I became known through commercials and the sitcom 'Nonstop'. Until then I wasn't really an actor. If anything, I was an entertainer with a cute image. But after 'Nonstop' ended and I saw the spotlight that was on me shifting immediately to another person, I fell into a slum. And not being admitted to the college I wanted at the time put me at a loss of what to do. Fortunately, I was cast in two musicals and I was able to be satisfied seeing myself on a large stage. And I think I was able to become known as an actor through the drama 'Hwangjiny', and I can feel more of that through the movie 'Happy Life'. But this is not my final destination".

He restlessly spoke about his dreams.

"I don't believe myself to be an adult yet. I still have a mind that is not quite yet fully matured. But I hope people who meet me can become closer as a person and respect and trust me".

Then what would be the image of an 'actor' Jang Geun-suk be?

"I want to be pure. Whether I become 40 or 60, I want to be a humble actor who doesn't loses passion. I am extremely happy right now by just being able to act".

He is a young actor who is experiencing a pleasant growth period.

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