Actor Jung Hae-in (Netflix)
Taking on a character that is a departure from his previous romantic lead roles does not mean he wants an image overhaul, actor Jung Hae-in says.
“Shooting the six-part series ‘D.P.’ provided a chance to reflect on my emotions and I am certain that the audience will have many thoughts after watching all the episodes,” said Jung.
“I am well aware of the images created through my previous dramas and I did not choose ‘D.P.’ because I wanted to change them,” Jung said during an online interview with a group of reporters on Wednesday afternoon. “While I was taking a break, director Han Jun-hee contacted me and said ‘I think I see some images of Ahn Jun-ho (played by Jung) in you.’”
Asked why he chose to take on the role of young Pvt. Ahn Jun-ho, Jung said the production crew played a big part.
“The message of the stories and popularity of the original webtoon may have been important, but the director’s careful consideration and production crew’s passion moved my heart and made me feel confident to start the work with the staff,” Jung told The Korea Herald.
“D.P.” is a new Netflix original series -- an adaptation of a webtoon of the same title by Kim Bo-tong -- revolving around the life of Pvt. Ahn Jun-ho and Cpl. Han Ho-yeol (Koo Kyo-hwan) and their work -- capturing Army deserters.
“One of the most important aspect that the director and I shared was describing Jun-ho as an ordinary young Korean man. We did not want the character to be seen as someone special, so hearing comments about Jun-ho being without color relieved my concern and anxiety,” the actor said.
“D.P.,” a series about a Korean man joining the Army to complete his national service duty, has aroused mixed emotions not only among Korean viewers who have finished their military service but also in Jung.
Jung Hae-in as Jun-ho in “D.P.” (Netflix)
“Even though I was acting a character, some of my own attitudes and behaviors naturally came out. This provided me a chance to look back and reflect on how my life was when I was in the Korean Army. Sometimes, the actors had unpleasant feelings because the shooting brought back bad memories from the past,” said Jung. “It was an interesting experience and I was definitely glad that I had already completed my military service,” the actor said jokingly.
“‘D.P.’ is set in 2014, the year that Army Pfc. Yoon Seung-joo, who was physically abused by fellow enlisted soldiers, died.
“While I personally believe that the military has changed and continues to improve, we still hear news about unfortunate accidents in the military, making the viewers feel empathy with the characters and see the stories as the experience of their brothers, sisters and beloved friends,” Jung said, striking a more serious note. “I think the issues presented in our stories are important and measures are needed for young Koreans to complete their military service safely,” he said.
By Lee Si-jin (firstname.lastname@example.org