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190102 IZE Article "Doh Kyungsoo's Choice"


A movie Industry Representative talked about Actor Doh Kyungsoo. "He is a young male actor who fits the story between humans". Right now, he is being described as a "full of charm, unique, and interesting" character in the movie world. Aside from how his personality is in real life, right now there's a reason on why he's the main interest of movie and drama industry representative. He is a young male actor with eyes that carry on sadness and weight on his own. However, his advantages are rather in opposite of the current element of Korean movie industry.

Doh Kyungsoo who starred as a son of temporary worker in 'Cart' and a youth that is making small amount of money to live due to societal problems in 'Room Number 7', got himself a nickname of "an actor who specializes in acting as irregular workers". Right now he's playing in 'Swing Kids' as a North korean that tap dances inside a POW camp, he shaved his hair and act as a young boy who doesn't hide his feelings. While being a member of the very famous idol group EXO, he shaved his hair without fear in order to act as a soldier. And while he is on a world tour as a famous idol, he's taking on a role of a part-timer who didn't get paid sufficiently. In tvN's drama '100 Days Husband', his role as Yool/Wondeuk is also somewhat different from the role male actors usually do. In this drama, Doh Kyungsoo received harsh treatment from the female lead Hongshim (Nam Jihyun) due to his lack of livelihood, and she was busy keeping an eye on him. The role that Doh Kyungsoo has chosen is possible to exist. A-ssi who is in charge of the casting process of the movie 'Cart' revealed "Because the movie has a low budget, we wanted an idol-actor that has recognition. Of course there are people who won't look nicely at it due to an idol joining the project but after meeting him directly we see that he's very interested in the movie so there's no need to consider other actor". Meanwhile PD So Jaehyun from Studio Dragon that is in charge of producing '100 Days Husband' said "At first, there are people who are against the casting. However after hearing that he's filming 'Swing Kids', it managed to turn around the internal decision".

This is not something that Doh Kyungsoo undergo simply because his origin is an idol, but it is also a situation that is experienced by many actors in their 20s and 30s. The movie industry that put their trust on the ticketing power of middle-aged actors, it is not easy to find investment for a movie with a young actor that is tap dancing or a sad melodrama where the male broke up with his first love. In most cases, because middle aged actors over 40 year old is seen as a guarantee for success, the investors would move quickly to secure their spot. Inside it, the young actors in 20s or 30s usually take on the role of the senior actor's junior or assistant. That is why in 'Chungmuro' young male actors mainly become busy in following their senior footsteps of playing character that excess masculinity. Considering the situation presented, A-ssi tried to combine two factors, "We're finding a stable point that the investor can rely on so when casting a male character we're combining a young male actor that can be incorporated to the senior male actor's world". However, when a young male actor is involved in such project, they cannot deviate much from the area that the senior male actor has created. Moreover, in the case of young male actor that is taking on a solo role, it could pose a burden that could lead him of finding a more stable direction.

B-ssi, a casting representative share their thoughts on Doh Kyungsoo "Although he give lot of consideration to the scenario but he like projects that carried a weight message, and with a role he wanted to do". If we see the current state of Korean Movie Industry, neither the project that he chose nor the role he decided to portray is not fitting with the common project that male actors in their 20s and 30s did right now. A-ssi called Doh Kyungsoo a case that take on challenge, "Practically speaking, it's a fact that compared to Actor Song Kangho and Ha Jungwoo, Doh Kyungsoo have less power in carrying a project in the scale of 'Swing Kids'". His strength and age, along with his recognition in the movie industry is not much for someone to take on a solo role. However, B-ssi said "Most male actors usually portray a role that could expose their physical advantage but for Doh Kyungsoo, he's an actor that put more importance in showing a calm atmosphere as his advantage". In the case of 'Swing Kids', casting representative B said "It is a project that is not easy to be chosen by other male actors, because the requirement of dancing and carrying the weight of the story on your own". That is the reason why the path Doh Kyungsoo choose in the Korean Movie Industry is interesting. In the commercial world where success is not guaranteed, there aren't many young male actors who's taking on role that fits their image and expose their skill.

PD So Jaehyun said "Rather than presenting a male character that fit the viewer's taste, there are diverse thought being put into. In 'Secretary Kim', people usually like Park Seojoon's strong manly character. However Doh Kyungsoo's portrayal of a fragile yet strong young man image is also receiving attention". B-ssi said "By looking at 'Swing Kids', Doh Kyungsoo's role is not really that of a super masculine one but it is clear that he is one of the few actors who could act the agony of a young boy in his 20s". Thing like this exist to give the viewers various representations of male characters that they can choose. B-ssi said "Each and every actor has their own unique points and role that they fit perfectly. However Swing Kid's Doh Kyungsoo is like Actor Lee Jehoon to 'I Can Speak' , Kim Youngkwang to 'On Your Wedding Day', and Park Bogum to 'Encounter'. The role that these actors chose showed the reason that young male actors need challenges".

From tvN 'Encounter' that slightly altered the male-female gender roles, movies with main female role such as 'Little Forest' and 'Miss Baek', the movie 'Perfect Time' which include many couples that highlighted the actor's harmony regardless of gender, this year the public showed their interest in refreshing new projects that are different from the past. And although 'The Merciless' is not a movie from this year, it gained recognition for emphasizing a collaboration between its two male lead. To be more practical, these movies are not movies with typical roles where the male role must look cool while rescuing the female. Right now, South Korean male actors have chance to choose their role just like Lee Jehoon, Doh Kyungsoo, Park Bogum, and Im Siwan. "There are more opportunities presented for young male actors compared to young female actresses. However just like the past they are still usually only being placed within the senior actor's league". Of course there are actors taking on role that highlight their great physical strength, and it's not a wrong thing to do. However a change is happening, and it is clear to see whether it will be fulfilled or not. This is the meaning of Doh Kyungsoo's choice.

Source : IZE Korea
repost / translating to other language is permitted with credit to @dyororo_
Tags: 2019, drama : a hundred days husband, movie : swing kids, news article
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