Kang Tae Oh’s “that’s disappointing” is one of the most popular lines of the year thus far. And the man behind it saddened many in real life with news of his upcoming military service. But before he heads off, he has some insights to keep us hooked just a bit longer!

The actor stole the hearts of many with his role of Lee Jun Ho in “Extraordinary Attorney Woo,” a drama that tells the story of Woo Young Woo (Park Eun Bin), a young lawyer on the autism spectrum who joins a major law firm. Lee Jun Ho is a character that seems to have it all from the good looks to the good personality. As he fell for Woo Young Woo, the audience also fell in love with him. It’s no surprise that he ranked No. 1 on the list of most buzzworthy drama cast members for five consecutive weeks.

Recently, Kang Tae Oh sat down for an interview to share his closing thoughts on the series. He began by saying, “I’m thankful for all the love for ‘Extraordinary Attorney Woo.’ These eight weeks went by so fast. I looked forward to Wednesday and Thursday nights every week. I starred in [the drama], but I enjoyed it just the same as a regular viewer. The drama has ended, but I hope it stays with people for a long time.”

He reminisced about when he first received the script for the show and said, “It was so fun. I sped through it and really enjoyed the thrill and small bouts of joy that came with each case being resolved. I started wondering how great of a piece would be born out of it when met with amazing creators, so I really wanted to take it on.”

Reflecting on his role of Lee Jun Ho, the actor shared, “There were a lot of struggles. There were moments where the delicate emotions seemed way too amplified, and everything came across differently depending on the intensity of my expressions. We filmed the ‘that’s disappointing’ scene several times, but each take came out uniquely different. I contemplated a lot on how to keep a hold on my emotions. Also, with Jun Ho, there were a lot of instances where I had to express several emotions in just a sliver of a moment like when he worries about Young Woo and feels jealous but also finds her adorable. The director requested a lot of these, so I adjusted as I went.”

When asked if he is a perfectionist when it comes to acting, he answered, “I think it’s kind of true, but more than being a perfectionist, I think it’s that I try to stay objective. Between a carrot and stick, I give myself more of the latter. I feel like if it was the other way, I would eventually be too easy on myself. And when some hardship comes up, I would justify myself by thinking, ‘Isn’t this enough?’ So, if I can, I try to give myself the latter.”

Kang Tae Oh also shared that the scene he was most satisfied with was the scene where in between kisses, Lee Jun Ho explains to Woo Young Woo how to kiss. He explained, “That was a scene I worried about and contemplated on a lot. I was feeling a lot of pressure about delivering those lines. I just kept thinking, ‘How should I do this?’ I couldn’t come to a firm conclusion even as I worked with the script, so I figured I would go with the flow once on set. Rather than being intentional about it, I acted according to what felt right in the moment. I’m glad that it reached the viewers in a good way.”

Kang Tae Oh’s onscreen chemistry with Park Eun Bin was another point of interest throughout the series. On this, he mentioned, “When it comes to acting, Park Eun Bin is straightforward with her feedback. [She tells me] things like, ‘As Woo Young Woo, that line and your gaze really hit me as genuine,’ or, ‘That was a bit too cheesy.’ Discussing these things honestly helped us create more elaborate scenes.”

One of the scenes where their teamwork really shone through was when the two went through the revolving doors together. Thinking back on shooting the scene, Kang Tae Oh shared, “Revolving doors are scarier than you’d think. The timing as well as matching Park Eun Bin’s pace was tougher than I expected, so we had several outtakes. Think of a swan that looks elegant above water but is swimming intensely with its feet underwater. It really was no joke, kicking each other and getting caught by the door sensors. We invested a lot of time into filming that scene from several angles. Thanks to this, it came out beautifully.”

As the series went on, Lee Jun Ho earned the nickname of “fox.” Kang Tae Oh had his own take on this and remarked, “When you say Jun Ho is a fox, it must be because he acted like one. But that’s not true. Jun Ho really gave it his all and expressed all his emotions as he experienced them, so I’m not sure why that’s made him a fox. That wasn’t the intention.”

He elaborated a bit more on his thoughts about the public’s response to his character. He said, “I don’t read comments or check on the public’s general response to the show. If I had known any earlier how the ‘that’s disappointing’ scene would be received, I think I would have been too aware of it and struggled as the shoot progressed. Also, I thought I’d be cool with it, but I realized I do get hurt when I see negative comments, so I purposely don’t check.”

“Extraordinary Attorney Woo” has received praise for shedding light on several aspects surrounding autism. Kang Tae Oh reflected, “I actually tried to steer away from feeling like I had to have a renewed sense of awareness or pressure to be careful. Jun Ho found Young Woo’s charms and abilities as a lawyer admirable, so I did so as well. Therefore, I worked on loving the character of Young Woo rather than trying to study up on it.”

He continued, “When Young Woo can’t go through the revolving doors and struggles, Jun Ho suggests a new approach to face the challenge together rather than opening up the side door for her. That’s the way I see it, and that touched me. I think that’s the message Jun Ho embodies.”

The actor shared that the series was a learning experience, saying, “The roles that I took on thus far have comparably been quite strong, but Jun Ho wasn’t like that, so it wasn’t so easy bringing him to life. I studied those details, and there were a lot of people providing their thoughts, so I got to learn about what it means to respond to reactions to acting. The project is a big steppingstone. It’s also a drama that’s reminded me to be on my best behavior because there are more people keeping an eye on me now.”

Wrapping up the interview, Kang Tae Oh said, “Old videos resurfaced thanks to more people watching the show. Whether they were projects that did well or not, I had this hope that many people would watch them. Seeing how people are checking out my filmography, bringing them back into the limelight, and promoting them, I thought, ‘Maybe my 10 years don’t amount to nothing.’ I’m so thankful. Going forth from here and from my return from the military, I’m not sure what lies ahead. But even that will shape me, so I think I’ve always got to work on showing people that I’m making progress.”

Check out Kang Tae Oh in “Doom at Your Service” below!:

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