Bae Doona Talks About Working With Directors From Around The World, Friendship With Gong Yoo, And More
On the January 13 episode of tvN’s “You Quiz on the Block,” actress Bae Doona appeared as a guest.
Asked what she had been doing lately, she replied, “As always, I’m just working and keeping busy filming dramas and movies.” She also mentioned her latest movie, “#IAmHere,” which is set to premiere in Korea on January 14. She explained, “It’s a French movie that I worked on with a French director and actors, but was filmed in Korea. A man who worked as a chef in France meets a Korean woman named Soo on social media and comes to Korea to see her, but Soo isn’t there at the airport when he arrives. After living in the airport for a bit, he decides to go find Soo.”
After her work in the hit Netflix series “Kingdom” was brought up, she smiled and said, “Isn’t it great? I think it was very well-made. I would monitor myself during filming and say, ‘I think I did great.’ Gong Yoo tells me that there’s no one who has such high self-esteem as me.”
She then compared her work with various directors from around the world. “There’s a reason that ‘Kingdom’ did so well,” she said. “Director Kim Sung Hoon doesn’t ever phone it in. He’s focused to the point of obsession. Just to film a single head rolling, he would go for 74 takes. Director Koreeda Hirokazu is the opposite. He does everything in a single take. At first, I was taken aback. I wondered, ‘Is this really OK? Has he given up on me?’ But he films in a documentary style.”
She continued, “The Wachowskis and Éric Lartigau are very spontaneous directors. There were times when I would get an A4-sized paper with my lines on the morning that I was scheduled to shoot. They would just write it out right there. I think they’re geniuses.”
Bae Doona worked with Koreeda Hirokazu in the upcoming film “Broker” alongside Song Kang Ho and Kang Dong Won. The Wachowskis directed “Sense8,” a global Netflix series, while Éric Lartigau is the director of “#IAmHere.”
Bae Doona is currently working on the Netflix series “The Sea of Silence” with Gong Yoo and Lee Joon, which is being produced by Jung Woo Sung. Before she came on “You Quiz on the Block,” she had asked Gong Yoo for advice. “I told him that I was a little afraid of the quizzes and he told me that it’s okay if I get them wrong,” she said.
She added that she and Gong Yoo call each other “black sesame” and “steamed white rice cake” as nicknames. “Gong Yoo is very tanned for his role in ‘The Sea of Silence,’ while I look as pale as I usually look,” she said. “But it created a big contrast between us. Gong Yoo said that we were like white and brown sugar. But that felt too sweet, so we went with black sesame and white rice cakes instead.”
Finally, Bae Doona talked about her love for her work. “I can’t imagine a life in which I’m not an actor,” she said. “Acting is all I know how to do. I became an actor before I learned to dream of acting. I was cast on the street and became a model, did magazine shoots, did TV commercials, and then debuted in a movie. But I don’t regret being an actor. If I was born again, I’d do the same thing.”
She went on, “I think that being an actor is a really good job. Of course, there are things you have to put up with. In order to create a real character from text on a page, you have to be extremely sensitive about various things, so it can impact one’s daily life. Apart from my talent, there might come a time when the public is sick of seeing me and wants to see less of me. I think that that time might come someday. That’s why I’m working hard right now. People ask me why I don’t take a break, but this time right now is too precious. I want to live each day as intensely as possible. As I passed 40, I thought that I should live without regrets. I feel like I’m living my life on sets. Right now, my entire life is on set.”
Watch Bae Doona in “Matrimonial Chaos” below!