[Eng translation] Yoo Yeon Seok’s hand written letter to fans at 2018 All About YOO fanmeeting.

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Hello. It’s Yoo Yeon Seok.

Once again, I get to write a short letter to you (fans) for this Fan Meeting. This is the only way that I can repay and reply to all of you fans who have written me letters in the past.

When you all hold this letter in your hands and are reading it, I suspect that the fan meeting would be over and you all would be returning home in the evening. How was today? Did you enjoy yourselves? ^^

As this fan meeting is to celebrate the 15 year anniversary of my debut, and I think it will be memorable as a more meaningful and joyful occasion because of it.

To be honest, I completely forgot that it was my 15 year anniversary, and I just concentrated on filming my drama, until one day a fan congratulated me on my 15 year debut anniversary. Because of that I felt a strange sense of responsibility. At the filming location, I felt always a sense of newness, unfamiliarity and difficulty. Because of this, I had forgotten that it had been such a long time since my debut.

But now I go to the shoots, and find that my juniors increase one by one, and the days in which I get called a senior at these shoots become more and more frequent. And because of this I feel a greater sense of responsibility and burden that I have to carry as an actor.

I felt once again, that the reason that I could continue on as an actor like this, was due to the unconditional love and support from all of you fans. Thoughts of you fans who steadfastly loved me came to mind. Although there were times when I showed you guys an unsatisfactory side of me, you all send such words of encouragement that it gave me so much strength to continue.

If I look back, it could be said that 15 years is a long time, but if you look at my future as an actor, you could also think that it’s not such a long time in that perspective.

Please continue to send love to me and have great expectations for me as I continue into the future. In return, I will continue my best efforts to be that actor that through the long term that you follow my career, continues to show something new and different.

Once again, I thank you for your precious steps in coming here.

I love you ❤

The actor who loves all of you
Yoo Yeon Seok

2018 YOO YEON SEOK FAN MEETING

(Translated by YeoNiverse. Give full credits when taken out or used for other languages translation)

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[Eng trans] (A reporter’s story) Interesting interaction with Yoo Yeon Seok and Byun Yo Han.

From: Singapore’s Lianhe Zaobao’s Reporter Huang Shao Wei’s interview session with Mr Sunshine cast. Article dated July 25, 2018.

(Note: Screenshots are from a different source – NewShowBiz interview video)

Screenshot_20181012-121334_YouTube

Reporter Huang Shao Wei: Interview with 《Mr Sunshine》

(Earlier part omitted)

Interesting interaction with Yoo Yeon Seok and Byun Yo Han.

In contrast, the interview with the group of three second leads consisting of Yoo Yeon Seok, Kim Min Jung and Byun Yo Han feels more at ease and relaxing.

Yoo Yeon Seok was the first one to walk into the interview room. Once he sat down, he very politely asked each one of us where were we from. He is a warm, nice man, sort of like his character in his last drama 《Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim》.

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When Kim Min Jung and Byun Yo Han came in, the atmosphere became even joyous. They cheerfully answered the questions while talking and laughing, teasing each other.

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Yoo Yeon Seok and Byun Yo Han have facial hair in the drama, so both of them shared about the benefits and difficulties of sporting facial hair.

Byun Yo Han joked that he can save the trouble of shaving his facial hair, and doesn’t have to worry of scratching himself, while Yoo Yeon Seok revealed that he naturally can’t grow thick facial hair so he had to rely on make-up artists. The interaction between the two is so interesting.

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Due to the time constraint, the group’s interview was cut down to 15 minutes from the original 20 minutes. There were 8 reporters from Hong Kong, Taiwan, the Philippines, Thailand and other places, so the time given was not enough. After the third reporter interviewed them, the staff signaled that that was the end of the interview.

Naturally, the reporters who came all the way to Korea but having no chance to interview them were looking reluctant and embarrassed. Seeing this, Yoo Yeon Seok took the initiative to ask for the interview time to be extended to let the rest of the reporters to interview them. He was being truly considerate.

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There was a another episode where me and a Hong Kong reporter was waiting for the bus to go back to our hotel at the venue entrance. When Byun Yo Han passed by, he stopped and talked to us in Mandarin. Turns out he has studied in Harbin for three years during high school and his Chinese is good. And he was kind enough to take a selfie with us at the end, being so similar to his cheerful personality in the drama.

In my heart, he and Yoo Yeon Seok perhaps are the real “Mr Sunshine”.

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Translated by YeoNiverse

[Eng](Article) Yoo Yeon Seok meets ‘Mr. Sunshine’… drawing in interest from early on.

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(Sports DongA article from June 2, 2018)

Actor Yoo Yeon Seok’s new look in his new drama is drawing in a considerable amount of anticipation.

In the upcoming drama ‘Mr. Sunshine’ that will have its first broadcast on cable channel tvN this coming July 7, Yoo Yeon Seok is expected to showcase 3 different charms at the same time through his acting as a swordsman – tough masculine beauty, sexy charms as well as sorrow.

Anticipations were raised through the release of the drama’s 30 seconds trailer recently.

Yoo Yeon Seok’s appearance in the trailer was short and passed by quickly, but the reactions were saying that it gave out a strong impression.

He appeared wearing an outfit resembling a Japanese samurai as he rushes barefoot towards his opponent in the trailer. Blood was all over his face but he stared at his opponent indifferently.

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As he trained and obtained Taekwondo black-belt during his teen, he could act out all the action scenes including swift swordsmanship perfectly.

Yoo Yeon Seok is represented by his soft and clean-cut image from 2017 SBS drama ‘Romantic Doctor Teacher Kim’ as well as cable tvN’s ‘Reply 1994’.

Though he has already showcased the rough masculine beauty through his portrayal as Director Park in 2013’s movie ‘Hwayi’, it feels like it will be even more intense in Mr. Sunshine.

His ability to grab the attention on the screen is prominent.

Yoo Yeon Seok’s role in ‘Mr. Sunshine’ is a son born into the Baekjeong caste, and he went through the severe pain of being discriminated against not only by the Yangban class (aristocrats) but also by the Cheonmin people (the lowest caste of commoners). He left Joseon and flee to Japan and set to make a living as a swordsman there.

In a life full of sorrow and anger, his heart was moved by another main character (played by Kim Tae Ri) who was the only person who sees him as a fellow human.

If his one-sided love in Reply 1994 made Yoo Yeon Seok’s soft charm to stand out as it was young and fresh, here in Mr. Sunshine, his one-sides love is expressed in a more sorrowful and heartbreaking way.

One of the drama’s officials said “Yoo Yeon Seok will have a totally different appearance and vibe from before”, and adds, “Even from internally, he has analysed and expressed the character’s inner feelings perfectly.”.

Source: Sports DongA via Naver

(T/N: The translation is not perfect and feel free to correct if there is any mistake ^^;;)

Mr. Sunshine’s Goo Dong Mae character’s description

[A]

Goo Dong Mae (Actor Yoo Yeon Seok)

He was born as a Baekjeong‘s son.
Baekjeong people were not even regarded as human. The daughters and wives of Baekjeong were boastfully raped, and while Baekjeong’s men hold the knives, they could not wield them on anybody. It was humiliating everyday.

When their paths crossed, others would get startled, steered away and even spit on him. Even forceful beating would feel less hurtful. His being was worth less than cows and pigs. That was Dong Mae.

As he couldn’t live as cows and pigs, he got out of the village following a group of singing beggars. The hardship period was long and the beatings from the hyungs were brutal.
The violence used by the people of  Cheonmin class towards other Cheonmin people were more vicious than the tyranny by the Yangban class. A better world for a Baekjeong son like Dong Mae was nowhere to be found on the ground of Joseon.

So Dong Mae abandoned Joseon on his own. No, actually, from the very beginning, Joseon never had Dong Mae.

[B]

As he crossed over to Japan, Dong Mae has caught the eyes of Kokuryukai‘s top leader. Dong Mae has held knives since he was ten. His swords were aimed only at the fatal spots, neat and swift.
Dong Mae’s country was not Joseon nor Japan, but the Kokuryukai. He moves for the sake of Kokuryukai’s benefits and prosperity.
Dong Mae was like a beast who captured beasts. He tore and devoured everything in front of him that blocked his way.

The Kokuryukai bestowed a new name for Dong Mae, something that a father would do for his children. So from that day on, in Dong Mae’s heart, Kokuryukai was his father.
Kokuryukai intended to expand their influence in Joseon and made Dong Mae stood in the vanguard to lead.

[C]

There was only one reason for Dong Mae to return to Joseon.  The eyes of the only woman who stared at him.
There was no contempt, disdain and not even fear in her eyes. The woman is no other than the aegisshi (noble young lady) of Joseon’s aristocrat family, Ae Shin.

As he behaved as a person should, he became desperate for the name Go Ae Shin only
He shouldn’t feel like this, but he wouldn’t care even if everyone in the world became his enemy

He was really displeased with the American guy who would often hang around Ae Shin. He was struck with the feeling as if he was being cut in. But he never had her, though.

Loving only Ae Shin, crazy in love, being crazy because of love – Dong Mae is such a man.

Source: http://www.dmitory.com/kdrama/11984638

(T/N: Read this post for more background info on the traditional Korean social hierarchy back then and the discrimination faced by the outcast group, ‘Baekjeong’, the caste which Dong Mae belonged to)

A closer look on Yoo Yeon Seok’s role in tvN’s upcoming drama ‘Mr. Sunshine’ – Goo Dong Mae

/dust off the blog/

Well hi there YeoNiverse wordpress, long time no update! Haha. Well in recent time we’re mostly focused on our SNS platforms for Yoo Yeon Seok’s updates – Twitter; Facebook; Instagram; Tumblr… so we hardly post things here, sorry.

Anyway. A few days ago, tvN has released the first trailer of their upcoming drama, Mr. Sunshine. Written by Kim Eun Sook, here is one of the descriptions of the drama available:

“Writer Kim is drawing young romance and love on a sheet of confusing and scathing background of modern history. Men and women born in slave, butcher and noblemen families overcome their social statuses and fall in love.” [S]

YeoNiverse has subbed the trailer for your viewing –

Now we have a fierce looking Yoo Yeon Seok in the trailer – he’s sporting an unkempt hair, sending some deadly stares as he lead a pack of swordsmen in Japanese traditional clothing . He is Goo Dong Mae.

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Goo Dong Mae is the Branch Manager of the Kokuryukai, or Amur River Society in Kyungsung (one of Seoul’s old names). Kokuryukai was a  prominent paramilitary, ultranationalist right-wing group in Japan. [S]

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Now come the questions about Goo Dong Mae – is he a villain? Is he a bad guy? Is his role a tragic one? Will we hate him? Will we understand from where he came from?

If anyone is interested, you can read below on (the possibility of) Goo Dong Mae’s background:

Firstly, Mr. Sunshine is set in the early 1900s, an era before the Japanese occupation in Korea, but the Japanese influence over the country was growing. During those time, and before that, ie the time when this drama characters were born and growing up, the Korean traditional social hierarchy still exist. They were living in a society where people were divided into classes such as –

  1. Wangjok (Royalty);
  2. Yangban (Nobility – mainly composed of civil servants and military officers [s]);
  3. Chungin (upper middle class [s]);
  4. Sangmin (the working class, or the peasants. Common people of Joseon Korea – consisted of peasants, laborers, fishermen, some craftsmen and merchants. [s]);
  5. Cheonmin (“vulgar commoners,” the lowest caste of commoners in dynastical Korea. Divided into 2 broad categories – 1) the slaves and 2) occupational Cheonmin[s] )
  6. Baekjeong (said to be of Cheonmin class, but their status is lower. They’re an “untouchable” outcast group of Korea, often compared with the burakumin of Japan and the dalits of India and Nepal. [s])

Goo Dong Mae is said to be a ‘Baekjeong’s son’.

Baekjeong (백정) means 1) “butcher: (archaic) A person who slaughters animals such as cows, pigs, etc., for market.” [S]; and 2) Baekjeong also denotes an “untouchable” outcast group of Korea [S] Butchery is the main occupation of the outcast group Baekjeongs, and it is noted that butchery was more a public obligation than a source of income for them. [S]

“The baekjeong did jobs that no self-respecting Buddhist Korean would touch, including anything working with animals. Slaughtering animals; leather making; these kinds of dirty duties were avoided by Koreans, and so were filled de facto by baekjeong.” [S]

So based on the above info, we can safely assume that Goo Dong Mae belongs to Baekjeong, the outcast group of people back in the days.

Baekjeong people faced contempt and discriminations from all frontsseparate communities (they were forced to live in segregated quarters isolated from the common people), restriction on dress (they were forbidden to wear the ordinary headgear of black varnished lacquer which was worn by all married people as it was considered too good for them, among others), restriction on marriage customs and funerals  (They were not allowed to use the community funeral cart which were usually found in each village to transport the corpse. Their dead had to be buried in segregated plots so as not to pollute the sacred burial grounds of the common people, among others), restriction on names, they did not have the civil rights held by the ordinary people since they were not considered worthy of citizenship, forbidden from buying fresh fish in the market, punished differently from other people, and a lot more discriminations. (Click on here [S] to read more on the discriminations faced by the Baekjeong people)

…Paekchong suffered from the contempt and discrimination in ordinary society, it is interesting to notice that the status of the Paekchong was far below that of the slaves in the traditional Korean social system.”,there was no way for the Paekchong or their descendants to break out of the outcast status and to become· yangmin.” [S]

A few more descriptions of Goo Dong Mae in the drama:

  • “…Koo Dong-mae, who loves Ko Ae-sin. He was born to a butcher’s family and abandoned the Josun on his own but he risks everything on Ko Ae-sin who took to him as a human being unlike others who saw him as no better than a pig or cow.” [S]
  • “…the son of a lowly butcher who flees his homeland and goes to Japan in search of a new life. He’s described as a tragic character who falls in love with Kim Tae-ri’s aristocratic young lady, and will risk everything for his love.” [S]
  • “To help her country during the time of crisis, Ae Shin is leaving to join the righteous army. Dong Mae is worried about her and wanted to help her, but he is conflicted between the resentment he harboured towards Joseon and worrying over his own current condition.” [S]

So his background as a Baekjeong who faced the contempt and discrimination in Joseon explains why Dong Mae hates Joseon and flee to Japan on his own to seek a new life.

This is probably how he became the branch manager of the Kokuryukai in Kyungsung, and became on the Japanese side.

But then again, there is also a possibility of him crossing over once Ae Shin whom he loves, decides to join the righteous army. Will Dong Mae also join her and became the righteous army to fight off the growing influence of the Japanese in Joseon – which would mean he has to risk everything and betraying the Kokuryukai?

This whole thing about the drama and characters sounds so meaty (no pun intended) so it also made us wonder if the actual drama would be as meaty as the concept suggest or would it be just an empty love story with the turbulant times of Joseon being only their background? Also, the chances of his role being hated is very high, on top of his screentime might not be that much. So be prepared and best not to expect much, folks. lol.

The drama is planned to be aired starting from July 7, 2018.

(Note: The post was edited and updated with a few more info)

[Eng Translation] (Article) “I worried a lot but…” Up until the last performance, Yoo Yeon Seok’s Hedwig has enjoyed a successful run

Kookmin Ilbo via Naver :  “I worried a lot but..” Up until the last performance, Yoo Yeon Seok’s Hedwig has enjoyed a successful run.

[Article] Final performance

The 3 months long run of musical ‘Hedwig’ as attempted by actor Yoo Yeon Seok (33) has successfully wrapped-up.

On November 5th, in the Art Center Grand Theater, Hongik University, Jongno-gu, Seoul, after he finished performing his final Hedwig performance in Seoul, Yoo Yeon Seok greeted the audience, “I was very nervous about how the audience would like my performance as I was preparing for it, so I’m very thankful that the seats were filled up like this, up until the end”.

This is the first Hedwig attempt from Yoo Yeon Seok who debuted in the musical scene through ‘Le Passe Muraille (The Passer Through Walls)’ in 2015. From the rock genre, excessive make-ups to cross dressing, he is a stranger to all of those but he breaks through them with his distinctive sincerity and earnestness. To diet is a given. He could also perform rock music brilliantly after exerting such a hard work.

Music director Lee Joon said “At first, there were a lot of worries amongst ourselves. However, my worries disappeared as I watched Yoo Yeon Seok’s training process. The moment (Yoo Yeon Seok) wear the costumes, put on the make-up and wig, I thought ‘Oh, we have picked the right Hedwig after a long time'”

Yoo Yeon Seok said “There were so many great ‘sisters’ who have portrayed Hedwig all these while, so I feel burdened and have a lot of worries at first” and he continued, “But thanks to the audience who love the performances as well as all of the staffs who have worked hard, I was able to finish my performances well. Thank you.”

And on this day he specifically mentioned his mother who was amongst the audience watching the performance, “I came to have a lot of thoughts through acting as Hedwig. (Our house) has only two sons, so I thought how lonely it would’ve been for my mother all of this time. From now on, I’ll be a son who is like a daughter (to my mother)”.

Yoo Yeon Seok gave his all for the crowd who were cheering for him passionately up until the end. As his voice went hoarse (at the end), he hid it with efforts and went down the stage, performing Radiohead’s ‘Creep’ as well as Hedwig’s main theme ‘The Origin of Love’ as encore songs.

From August this year, the title role of Hedwig has been performed by Oh Man Seok, Michael Lee, Jung Moon Sung, Jo Hyung Kyun as well as Yoo Yeon Seok. Joining them as Yitzhak are Jeon Hye Sun, J-Min and Yoo Ri Ah.

After completing its run in Seoul, Hedwig will be performed in Andong (November 23~25) and Busan (December 9~10).

 

 

(ENG) (Comments) Yoo Yeon Seok throwing the ceremonial first pitch for Korean Series 5th Game

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MyDaily via Naver : [MD Photo] Yoo Yeon Seok ‘signal communication with the catcher’

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1. [+1668, -10] Hey it’s Chilbongie.

2. [+946, -8] Aigoo our Chilbongie threw the first pitch

3. [+908, -9] In Reply series he was a baseball player so it seems like he’s so used in throwing the ball haha

4. [+855, -25] When walking on the streets I thought at least once I’d encounter a good looking man, but in reality there are none. So that’s why they’re (called) celebrities, right?? ㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋ He’s handsome.

5. [+771, -18] He’s so cool

6. [+278, -10] His pitching style is amazing, as expected, it’s Chilbongie

7. [+258, -10] Seriously so cool, Yoo Yeon Seok!!!

8. [+226, -6] Chilbongie.. still as cool as ever

9. [+201, -4] During Chuseok, I watched the re-run of R94 on (channel) xtm ㅋㅋ Chilbongie

10. [+208, -7] The most pitiful one amongst the (characters of) Reply series… Your ceremonial first pitch is the best, you did well~

 

It's Yoo Yeon Seok, no matter what