Lee Jung Jae And Park Hae Soo Are Two Sides Of The Same Coin In “Squid Game”

Netflix’s upcoming series “Squid Game” has released new character stills!

“Squid Game” is a new drama about a mysterious survival game with a reward of 45.6 billion won (about $40 million). Lee Jung Jae and Park Hae Soo star as two childhood friends who wind up joining the game—only to learn that there’s much more at stake than just the prize money.

According to Lee Jung Jae, his character Ki Hoon is one he has “never experienced before.” That says a lot, given that Lee Jung Jae has a spectacular discography including “The Thieves,” “Assassination,” “The Face Reader,” “Deliver Us from Evil,” and more. Ki Hoon is someone who has experienced divorce, the failure of his business, debt, and gambling. He’s a character that doesn’t lose hope and humanity even in the midst of desperation. Lee Jung Jae commented further on the role by saying, “I tried to express the heavy sense of pain hidden beneath what seems to be a vibrant life on the surface.”

Ki Hoon holds on to respect for others and hope while being swept off his feet by waves of emotions and fierce competition. He struggles through each round as he is forced to hurt others in order to survive. Director Hwang Dong Hyuk commented that he wanted to show “Lee Jung Jae’s personable image hidden within the actor’s sharp and fierce image.”

Park Hae Soo, on the other hand, will play Sang Woo, who grew up with Ki Hoon in the same neighborhood as a brilliant kid that went on to attend Seoul National University. After falling into great debt after one wrong decision, he goes from smooth sailing through life to fighting tactfully and in cold blood in the games. His character falls on the opposite end of the spectrum from Lee Jung Jae’s Ki Hoon. As the story progresses, his ambitions start coming to the surface and the look in his eyes grow colder.

His focus on winning is showcased in the still where he remains the only one standing among all the other contestants crouching down. Park Hae Soo’s efforts to show “the reasonable choices and decisions only Sang Woo can make” will make for a show with heightened tensions. Director Hwang Dong Hyuk commented, “Park Hae Soo’s face has an interesting charm that comes from falling neither on the side of good nor evil. I think he’ll be able to portray this character that evolves most dramatically better than anyone.”

On the contrast between the two characters, the director continued to explain, “I wanted them to emulate fraternal twins that share the same root and memories. They are neighbors that grew up in the same neighborhood. They shared their most innocent times, went on to live their own lives, and reunite at an unexpected place. Will they trust one another, will they survive? You’ll fall deeper into their choices and lives as the story progresses.”

“Squid Game” premieres September 17 on Netflix.

In the meantime, catch Lee Jung Jae in “Assassination” here:

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And Park Hae Soo in “Quantum Physics” here:

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