Watch: Kim Tae Ri, Nam Joo Hyuk, WJSN’s Bona, And More Introduce Their “Twenty Five, Twenty One” Characters + Why They Chose The Drama
Upcoming youth drama “Twenty Five, Twenty One” has shared a sneak peek with a new production video!
tvN’s “Twenty Five, Twenty One” is set in 1998 and tells the stories of youth who find new direction and growth after having their dreams taken away. Nam Joo Hyuk and Kim Tae Ri star as Baek Yi Jin and Na Hee Do, who first meet when they are 22 and 18 years old and fall in love years later when they turn 25 and 21. The drama also stars WJSN’s Bona (Kim Ji Yeon), Choi Hyun Wook, and Lee Joo Myung, and is written by Kwon Do Eun (“Search: WWW“) and directed by Jung Ji Hyun (“Search: WWW,” “The King: Eternal Monarch”).
The clip begins with each actor introducing their character and sharing what drew them to the drama. Kim Tae Ri shares, “First off, the script was so fun. The story that the writer was telling really touched me. [The writer] told me they wanted to draw out a drama with the kind of characters you want to wholeheartedly support in their success because they feel like you and are you, which I found moving.”
Nam Joo Hyuk comments, “Being able to show and tell the story of the generation of 1998 as opposed to present day was the most compelling. I had a lot of curiosity about what it would’ve been like back then. I was moved by the fact that I could act out this time period so I chose [the drama].”
Bona shares, “I was a really big fan of the director and writer’s last work, ‘Search: WWW.’ It was so fun and suited [me] well so I thought, ‘I really want to do this.'” Choi Hyun Wook explains, “I really liked the idea of the story of five friends. I remember laughing then crying while reading the script.” Lee Joo Myung adds, “This is the first time I’ve wanted to work on a project this much. It’s really fun, touching, and a tearjerker.”
Kim Tae Ri plays Na Hee Do, a fencing athlete whose high school team was disbanded due to the IMF crisis. Although her dreams appeared to have collapsed in front of her, she forged ahead into her future without giving up.
To describe her character, Kim Tae Ri comments, “Hee Do first began learning fencing as a fencing prodigy, but from a certain moment on, she falls into a slump and continuously struggles. However, she’s someone who proudly moves forward towards her dream.” In terms of similarity to Na Hee Do, Kim Tae Ri explains with a bright laugh, “I started at about 90 percent. I just began thinking Hee Do was me and I was Hee Do, but I’m having trouble keeping up with Hee Do’s energy. I think it’s fallen to about 10 percent.”
Nam Joo Hyuk plays Baek Yi Jin, the eldest son of a family that is torn apart due to the IMF crisis. Despite his difficult background, he works hard to become a reporter.
Regarding Baek Yi Jin, Nam Joo Hyuk shares, “Yi Jin was a very positive person and someone who could get along with anyone. Due to the IMF crisis, his family falls apart and he’s put in a position where he has to navigate the cruel world, but he’s able to do so well and in a lively manner, which matches his personality.” He continues, “I don’t think we match that well. Maybe 20 percent?” Nam Joo Hyuk comments that the reason for their similarity is a secret but adds, “I think it’ll be good if viewers watch and think, ‘Oh, is it this aspect?'”
Bona plays Go Yu Rim, a national fencing athlete. Bona comments, “She’s a hard-working person who only thinks about exercise and her family.” She adds, “There were a lot of things I could relate to so I thought we were really similar. But while filming, everyone else said that they thought we were the most different. I figure that’s because Yu Rim is a bit dark and cold at the beginning but as the episodes go on, you’ll be able to see that Yu Rim is a very warm person.”
Choi Hyun Wook shares, “[Moon] Ji Woong is a very positive and bright person whose nickname at school is ‘cutie’ because his actions and words are so pretty.” He picks their synchronization level to be half and explains, “Ji Woong is a very well-rounded person who’s got talent and nerve but I’m not like that.” Laughing, he continues, “I’m not very good at too many things.”
Lee Joo Myung shares, “In our drama, Ji Seung Wan does a lot, whether it’s a radio DJ or the broadcasting club, but still does not miss out on placing top of the class or having fun.” She continues, “We are not similar in terms of getting good grades. To be honest, at first I thought, ‘Will Seung Wan and I have a lot in common?’ But after constantly filming with the actors and going through the script, I think [Seung Wan] is nearly 99 percent like my school days.”
For their roles, both Kim Tae Ri and Bona had to take fencing lessons three months before filming began. Kim Tae Ri comments, “It’s really, really such a fun exercise. I learned really enjoyably, to the point where if I was born again, I’d want to do fencing.”
The five actors also discuss their good chemistry, with Lee Joo Myung emphasizing her character’s relationship with Moon Ji Woong. Bona adds, “When we first met, it was incredibly awkward. At first I thought, ‘It’s so awkward, will we be able to get close?’ But we had so much more in common that I thought.” Nam Joo Hyuk shares, “We prepared a lot so that we could entertain one another and all share various ideas so we are filming enjoyably.”
Watch the full production video here!
Production company Hwa & Dam Pictures shared, “We hope that you got a little taste of the friendly and happy atmosphere on set and the actors’ hard work through the ‘Twenty Five, Twenty One’ production video. ‘Twenty Five, Twenty One’ unravels the various charms of ‘youth,’ a word that makes hearts flutter, in a new and fresh way, so please look forward to it lots.”
tvN’s “Twenty Five, Twenty One” premieres on February 12 at 9 p.m. KST.
In the meantime, watch Kim Tae Ri in “Little Forest” below!