I was looking for the things you have in common and I realized that not only you belong to the same agency, but you were also its first members.
Yoo Yeon Seok: I didn’t have an agency when I debuted through “Old Boy”. Once I came back from the army, I joined my current agency. This is when I met Bumie for the first time. It’s already been 7 years.
Kim Bum: Before, Yeon Seok-hyung, Kwang Soo-hyung and I would get together often to have a drink. We’re all busy today, so it’s hard to bring everybody together.
YYS: Just like a family, we even go on an exercusion with our managers.
KB: We went on a MT trip, right? When you went on that MT trip, you also played the guitar. You can’t really play, though. I still have one of the polaroids we took back then.
YYS: Right! I have one too!
What do you think change or remain the same about the other throughout the years?
YYS: The thing that didn’t change about him is that he’s a good drinker? Haha. If you want to talk about what has changed, I knew since the first time I saw him that he was someone who thought a lot and he’s more mature now. Before, he seemed to be a bit more like an adult because he wanted to become one quickly, but I think he’s just getting older in a natural way.
KB: I know what he’s talking about. When I was young, I thought I knew many things compared to my age because I started working at a young age and I wanted to become an adult fast. However, when I look back now, I really wonder why I wanted to become an adult so much, why I wanted to know everything about life.
Is YYS exactly the same as before?
KB: I think he has always been good at smiling and taking care of anyone. He has a big sense of responsibility to protect those he cares about. If something changed about him, it’d be the fact he definitely acts with more freedom.
What is the first memory you have about each other?
YYS: I don’t really remember the first time we met. I think my oldest memory is when I opened the door of my agency the first time and we worked together on a project. It was the drama “Dream”. When we walked on the set the first time, we knew about each other, but we had never gotten the chance to actually talk to each other. Our first scene was a fight scene. Since we had to fight each other right after meeting each other, I wanted us to be close, so I told him “Bum-ah, let’s do well!”.
KB: Really? I must have been very embarrassed. I felt like a newbie back then, so I didn’t know what I was supposed to do and it must have been very embarrassing for me.
YYS: Well, I think I would have been embarrassed too if someone had said the same thing to me. But Bumie never showed he didn’t like it. On the contrary, he reacted well. I started boxing for this drama and I’m still boxing today. I really practiced hard back then. The set up had me always losing to Bumie, so there must have been something left unachieved here. If you take into the consideration the fact that I’m still boxing today. Haha.
KB: You’re still boxing today? After that drama, I never went back on a boxing ring. Haha.
Do you often talk about your projects? Do you monitor each other?
KB: For me, I’m comfortable with listening to the advice veteran actors give me, but I think you can be a bit sensitive when it’s said between actors who don’t have a big age difference. Unless it’s a close friend, I can’t monitor people.
Your most recent project was a saeguk for both of you. Yeon Seok, your movie “The Royal Tailor” is about to premiere. Bum, you didn’t give him any advice?
KB: Because I have never played a high profile character like the king he played. Haha.
YYS: In “Gu Family’s Book” that aired before “Goddess of Fire”, I played a young master. The stylists told me that I’do well in the role of a king if I get the opportunity to play one. Back then, I said “someone needs to make me king”. I’m quite happy that I got this good opportunity.
What do you do when you take a break?
YYS: I have many hobbies. I travel around and take pictures or I exercise through various sports. I play music and I make furniture. If I focus on something else that is not about acting, I let all my other feelings out when I’m acting.
KB: I go out. Instead of staying at home all by myself, I force myself to go out and see many people. I also exercise with my friends.
You debuted 7 years ago and you are now lead actor material. What do you think will have changed 7 years from now?
KB: 7 years from now, one of us will probably be married.
YSS: I must get married because I don’t want to live a life different from regular people. I want my acting to be something people can relate to, so I think I must live like other people at some extent. Once I’m at the age to get married, I want to give it a try.
KB: Give it a try?
YSS: No. I must do it only once. Haha.
KB: I think I never thought about when I should absolutely get married. I think it can change according to the person I’m in a relationship with.
Since we’re talking about marriage, how about recommending each other the kind of spouse that would be the right partner?
YYS: I think a woman who can be by his side, take care of him and support him because he gets lonely if he loves someone and there’s no one by his side.
KB: He’s a family man, so it’s obvious he will be good to his wife. So I think the most important thing will be how much they love each other.
But honestly the two of you don’t seem ready for marriage yet.
YYS: I must do a little bit more of melo and get married.
KB: I think I’ll be able to play in a melo even if I’m married. On the contrary, I won’t be able to do it because it’s been quite a while since I did a melo. I focused on characters such as an angel, a monster, a psychich, so I can play such characters, but melo or rom-coms are very unreal for me.
YYS: I’m the opposite. I’m able to focus and relate to characters you can see in real life rather than characters who are far from reality. If I get to play a melo, I want the story to be about two people loving each other, about how love begins.