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[Herald Interview] Chun Woo-hee says she felt ‘fulfilled’ playing news presenter Se-ra in ‘Anchor’

Chun Woo-hee stars in “Anchor,” directed by Jeong Ji-yeon (Acemaker Movieworks)
Chun Woo-hee stars in “Anchor,” directed by Jeong Ji-yeon (Acemaker Movieworks)

For actor Chun Woo-hee, playing veteran news presenter Se-ra in “Anchor,” directed by Jeong Ji-yeon, was an opportunity she had never had before.

“I felt fulfilled playing her because my female character had her own story told from beginning to end,” Chun said in an interview with a group of local reporters Wednesday.

In the film, Se-ra is a famous news presenter with a mother, So-jung (Lee Hye-young), who micromanages her life. One day, Se-ra receives a phone call from a woman named Mi-so, five minutes before her news program goes on air. Mi-so claims she is about to be killed by a stranger and asks Se-ra to report her story, adding that Se-ra is her idol. Se-ra tries to ignore the phone call, but later visits Mi-so’s home and discovers the dead bodies of Mi-so and her daughter.

“I was extremely interested in playing a news presenter. I have played many inexperienced workers and students. When I received the script for this film I was thirsty for a role like this,” Chun said.

Since Chun only had a month to transform herself into a news presenter, she practiced for three to four hours every day.

“I was worried that news presenters might watch our movie and criticize my performance, saying it is fake. The only thing I could do was practice,” Chun said. “When I watch the news, I used to focus on stories that they present, but after I took the role I started looking into how they present them. I’ve noticed that news presenters in different broadcasting companies have their own style and I tried to learn from them.”

She also changed her appearance to play Se-ra.

“It is the first time that I cut my hair short for a project so it was refreshing to me as well,” Chun said. “When I first cut my hair short people gave me feedback that I look too young so I had to change the style once more.”

She added that in her previous projects, she mostly wore minimal makeup, but for “Anchor” she caked in on to look like the news presenters we see on TV.

As Se-ra is a dark character who is sensitive and is put into many stressful situations, the actor was asked if it had had any impact on her.
Chun Woo-hee (Acemaker Movieworks)
Chun Woo-hee (Acemaker Movieworks)

“I once heard that although I am acting, my brain can conceive the situation as real. But I think I am pretty good at switching from my character to me in real life. I think that it is an important quality that you need as an actor to work healthy and also perform well,” she said.

Her character in the movie sees hallucinations after witnessing the dead body of Mi-so, which she said might look difficult, but was done naturally.

“I am good at picturing scenes when reading the script. When what I imagined in my head aligned with what the director pictured in her head, it became easy for me to perform,” Chun said.

At the end of the interview, the actor also talked about her relationship with her actual mother.

“Of course, my mom loves me, but she did not try to control me to accomplish her dreams like So-jung,” Chun said. “But I know the sacrifice that she made for me, so I can relate to Se-ra in some ways. I also want to return the love that she gave me.”

Korean thriller “Anchor,” starring Chun, hits local theaters Wednesday.

By Song Seung-hyun (