Q1. Are you feeling the global popularity?
I check out social media. So yes, I do realize the popularity. I saw the pictures that the people posted. Also, the parody videos posted by people who watched the show were interesting.
Q2. Why do you think people are so enthusiastic about ‘Squid Game’?
There are many unique parts. The script complexly harmonizes various aspects, and the filming and the characters are all well balanced. It seems that the era in which this kind of content can be sympathized with is also important. Director Hwang Dong Hyuk said that he had prepared the project for eight years, but now is when people can empathize (with the show) more than back then.
Q3. You showed a shocking makeover. What do you think about the reactions you’re getting?
Foreign fans probably don’t know who I am. I don’t know if he was my fan or even a Korean, but someone posted a bunch of pictures of me with the message, “Lee Jung Jae is an actor who can do more.” I laughed so hard after watching that. There’s nothing more I could ask if the viewers think, “I don’t know who that actor is, but he pulled off that Ki Hoo role so well.”
Q4. The mistake in the eating scene became a hot topic online.
When I film an eating scene, I do my best in the first shoot. But while filming the same scene 3 or 4 times, I get full and tend to cut corners. They were filming from my back, so I thought I wasn’t coming out. Guess they didn’t see that when editing (laughs).
Q5. Was red hair a part of the script? Did you actually dye your hair?
Red hair was actually written in the scripts. Dying your head to red is something that a man in Ki Hoo’s age will never do. I think it showed his will to transcend a certain limit. I didn’t dye my hair but instead wore a wig.
Q6. Wasn’t there any pressure about breaking your dandy image?
I really became a squid. People who saw it said things like, “The hat doesn’t look good on you. Why did you wear it?” to me. I heard lots of things. But all I wanted to do was to disappear into Sung Ki Hoon, and I’ve never thought that I had to break my image. I was just doing realistic acting.
Q7. I acted with Lee Byung Hun in one scene.
I’ve been friends with Byung Hun since my debut. Thanks to his relationship with director Hwang Dong Hyuk, he made a special appearance in Squid Game. If there ever is season 2, I would love to work with him. Even if I can’t appear in season 2, I want to work with him on some other projects.
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