Actor Daniel Henney Works as “Messenger of Hallyu Culture”


Actor Daniel Henney, who is of mixed heritage, has worked as a "messenger of hallyu culture."

Currently acting in KBS TV 2’s drama entitled "Spring Waltz," Henney gave an interview to journalists from major American news organizations, such as a CNN anchor and reporters from The Washington Post and The Seattle Times, who visited a filming location of the drama on Apr. 1. For about two hours in fluent English, he introduced how he began working as an actor and the general trend of Korean soap operas, as well as "Spring Waltz."

Touching on why Korean TV dramas have contributed to advancing the hallyu boom overseas, Henney said, "Korean TV dramas are successful. For example, a 20-odd-episode drama features a story with a tight plot. They are mostly filmed outdoors, rather than at studios, with the focus on a universal theme of love."

He said, "I was lucky, because the Korean people held a prejudice against people of mixed blood when I arrived in Seoul to work. Previously, Korean TV used to place cultural restrictions on violent or kissing scenes. But I found Korean TV expanded its cultural boundaries after the issue of mixed heritage was handled in the latest drama entitled ‘My Name is Kim Sam-soon,’ in which I acted."

Meanwhile, Henney visited a public steam sauna to film a scene for "Spring Waltz" on Mar. 29. Despite his unfamiliarity with the steam sauna, he acted opposite actress Han Hyo-joo at the steam sauna in impressive fashion, peeling hard boiled eggs, drinking iced sweet rice punch, and receiving a massage using cucumbers. Asked by director Yun Suk-ho to go into a hot steam bath, Henney hesitated for a few seconds. But he had the courage to go into the bath shortly, finishing the scene without a hitch.

Emerging from the steam sauna, Henney said with satisfaction, "This was my third visit to a steam sauna. I like it very much. Foreigners like it, too."

He said it was the first time he has ever experienced a cucumber-based massage, recommending it to foreign tourists.