Lee Tae Hwan Talks About Working With Cast Of “Royal Secret Agent,” How He Prepared For His Role, And More
Following the finale of KBS 2TV’s “Royal Secret Agent,” Lee Tae Hwan sat down for an interview to share his thoughts on the drama!
“Royal Secret Agent” is a comic mystery drama set in the Joseon dynasty, and Lee Tae Hwan took on the role of Sung Yi Bum, a leader of bandits and the half-brother of Sung Yi Kyum (Kim Myung Soo), a secret royal inspector. Thanking viewers for tuning in to the drama, he said, “It seems like the first day of filming was just yesterday, so it’s a shame the drama has already ended. I always had a good time on set and I got along really well with the director, actors, and staff. Most of all I want to sincerely thank everyone who sent their love to the drama up until the end.”
“Royal Secret Agent” surpassed its own personal best ratings record multiple times, reaching average nationwide ratings of 10.2 and 14.0 percent for the final episode. Lee Tae Hwan revealed that he received many messages and pictures from his family and friends who tuned in to watch the drama live. He laughed as he added, “The age range of people who recognize me has increased.”
When asked about his most memorable scene, Lee Tae Hwan responded, “The scene in the last episode where Sung Yi Kyum points his sword at Sung Yi Bum. All of the emotions that had piled up between them just fade away during that scene and you can tell just by the looks in their eyes that they forgive each other, so that scene is most memorable to me.”
Explaining how he prepared for his role, Lee Tae Hwan said, “I studied the soft charisma that was portrayed well by the characters that Kim Nam Gil and Yoo Yeon Seok played in ‘The Great Queen Seondeok‘ and ‘Mr. Sunshine.'” As for how he resembled his own character, Lee Tae Hwan shared, “When there’s a problem, I try to do the right thing. I also resemble him in that I have a strong sense of justice.”
Lee Tae Hwan commented on how he worked together with his fellow cast members. “We all had good teamwork. Whenever I had an action scene, Kim Myung Soo would look after me like he was my real brother, and Lee Yi Kyung was the mood-maker and always full of ideas. Whenever I ran into a rough patch in my acting he would resolve it like a troubleshooter and always help me out,” he revealed. “Kwon Nara would always bring the set to life with her toughness. Jo Soo Min‘s energy also filled the set with good vibes. I was sincerely thankful for everyone on set.”
About how he prepared for the numerous action scenes in the drama, Lee Tae Hwan said, “I’ve had a lot of experience with action, but since there was a lot of swordsmanship I attended four-hour sessions at an action school three times a week and practiced with focus. I focused so much on preparing for the action scenes that my toenails turned black.”
Lee Tae Hwan also had to express a variety of complicated emotions as Sung Yi Bum, whose life took a drastically different path than that of his half-brother. He said, “Usually brothers fight a lot as they grow up. I acted while thinking of him as someone I couldn’t hate even if I tried. Although Sung Yi Bum and Sung Yi Kyum fought a lot due to their different values, I knew that deep down he would be thinking, ‘But he’s still my brother,’ and conveyed that in my acting.”
He also shared what he thought Sung Yi Bum would do next following the conclusion of the drama. “Sung Yi Kyum and Sung Yi Bum made up in the final episode, and I think that Sung Yi Kyum understood Sung Yi Bum’s way of life. I’d like to think Sung Yi Bum would live quietly with Kang Soon Ae (Jo Soo Min) in the village and secretly go scold the corrupt officials if they appear,” he said with a laugh.
Lee Tae Hwan finished up with a message to the viewers. “We enjoyed filming due to the love we received from everyone. In times like this where everyone has been having a hard time, I hope that this drama will remain in your memory as a source of healing and comfort. I sincerely thank everyone who has given their love to ‘Royal Secret Agent.’ Happy new year.”
Check out Lee Tae Hwan in the drama “Touch” below: