The Korea Herald


‘Honest Candidate’ sequel returns with even funnier setting

By Song Seung-hyun

Published : Aug. 24, 2022 - 17:47

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“Honest Candidate 2” directed by Jang Yoo-jung (New) “Honest Candidate 2” directed by Jang Yoo-jung (New)

What would happen if a politician cannot lie?

The original film “Honest Candidate,” which started from this idea, featured politician Joo Sang-sook (played by Ra Min-ran), who attempts to run for the fourth time for a seat at the National Assembly. She would lie about anything if it can earn her a vote. However, after visiting her grandmother, Sang-sook finds that she is unable to lie. This immediately gets her into all sorts of trouble.

Actor Ra won the best actress award for playing Sang-sook at the 41st Blue Dragon Film Awards in 2021.

“Winning the award was special. The director told me that she had prepared a lot more for the sequel. When I read the script, I asked, ‘Are we really filming all these scenes?’ because it was full of entertaining stories,” Ra said during a press conference held to introduce the new film at Lotte Cinema Konkuk University on Wednesday.

“There is a new character who also only tells the truth. There are new environments and new characters. I am sure that it is much more hilarious than the first one.”

In the sequel, Sang-sook is now jobless after losing the Seoul mayoral election. One day, she accidentally saves a man in the sea and sees an opportunity to return to politics. She starts lying again for a higher approval rating. But Sang-sook soon finds out that she is once again unable to lie -- and this time, she’s not the only one suffering from this mysterious affliction. Her assistant Park Hee-chul (played by Kim Mu-yeol) cannot lie either.

Actor Kim said he now understands the difficulties that Ra went through while filming the original movie, and thought that she totally deserved to win the best actress award at the Blue Dragon Film Awards.

“We all live telling white lies at times. I thought that I would feel some sort of satisfaction playing a character who does not lie. I did feel a catharsis at times, but it was mostly very difficult,” Kim said.

He explained that it was not easy because the character’s intentions and actions did not match.

“He (Hee-chul) keeps spewing out what is on his mind too honestly, and then tries to mend the situation (as an assistant). While doing that, he says honest things again, which makes the situation worse,” he said.

“I was very glad to share the pain of performing a character who cannot lie. I was really glad,” Ra added jokingly.

During the press conference, Jang Yoo-jung, who directed both the original and the sequel, said filming the sequel was much more difficult than she expected.

“I had more things to consider. I had to decide what to keep from the original movie and what new things to add. And I also tried to find a balance between the new and old elements,” she said.

After listening to the staff’s opinion, she said she made Sang-sook’s character a local administrator, instead of a lawmaker like in the original film.

“By making her a local administrator, I could tell stories that are more relatable,” she said.

The director also talked about the teamwork on set, which improved greatly in the sequel.

“Because I planned to film many scenes within a tight schedule, the actors were worried at first. They worked very hard with great teamwork, so we actually ended up finishing around two days early,” she said.

“Honest Candidate 2” will hit local theaters on Sept. 28.
“Honest Candidate 2” directed by Jang Yoo-jung (New) “Honest Candidate 2” directed by Jang Yoo-jung (New)