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Seo In-guk returns as leader of oil thieves in comedy-crime film “Pipeline”

Seo In-guk poses for photos after a press conference at the Megabox Coex theater in Samseong-dong, Seoul, Thursday. (Megabox Plus M)
Seo In-guk poses for photos after a press conference at the Megabox Coex theater in Samseong-dong, Seoul, Thursday. (Megabox Plus M)

Actor Seo In-guk is returning to the big screen as a leader of a ragtag team of oil thieves in the upcoming comedy-crime film “Pipeline,” directed by Yoo Ha.

“I was surprised that a movie about this topic is being created,” Seo said during the press conference Thursday that followed a press screening. “I was not familiar with the concept of thieves that steal oil from the pipeline. I have never seen any Korean movie with a similar subject.”

In the new movie, Pindol (played by Seo), the best pipeline drilling technician in Korea, meets Gun-woo (played by Lee Soo-hyuk), an heir of a large conglomerate. Gun-woo promises Pindol 1 billion won ($886,689) in exchange for pulling off a dangerous oil heist. Pindol takes the offer and Gun-woo rounds up a team of four thieves -- Jeobsae (Eum Moon-suk), Manager Na (Yoo Seung-mok), Keunsab (Tae Hang-ho) and Counter (Bae Da-bin). However, working together as a team is not easy as they all only work for their own benefits.

The director explained that he focused on featuring the casts’ teamwork.

“This movie is more focused on how thieves that did not know each other open up their minds and fight for the greater good, rather than a movie about how they use fascinating techniques to steal oil,” Yoo said.

Yoo, who is known for more dark and serious hit films like “Spirit of Jeet Keun Do - Once Upon a Time in High School” and “Gangnam Blues,” said it was a challenge for him to change gears in directing a film in the comedy-crime genre.

“It is totally different from what I have done so far. So if audiences did not see my name beforehand and watch it, they will wonder who this film is directed by,” Yoo said.

Although it was a challenge, Yoo added that he enjoyed the process.

“For action scenes, I did not use sashimi knives (like in the previous films.) I tried to create a funny movie with black humor. When filming action scenes for my previous film, I felt depressed after shooting them, but it was different for this movie,” the director said.

During the press conference, the director also talked about meeting Seo for the first time at a previous casting for another movie, which did not materialize due to insufficient funds.

“At the time I did not know Seo In-guk well. I knew that he competed for ‘Superstar K’ audition. I am only interested in pretty boys so I did not pay much attention to him,” Yoo joked, causing other actors at the conference burst into laughter. “But during our first meeting, he captivated me. You really have to meet people in person. His face had so many different potentials.”

Seo added that he was grateful that Yoo saw his potential on that day and cast him again for this upcoming film.

“Pipeline” will hit local theaters on Wednesday.

By Song Seung-hyun (

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