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Ahn Hyo-seop reflects on difficult times: “I could grow because I experienced a lot of pain. I learned the importance of rest.”

Actor Ahn Hyo-seop, known for his roles in ‘Dr. Romantic 2,’ ‘Lovers of the Red Sky,’ ‘Bossam: Steal the Fate,’ Dr. Romantic 3,’ and ‘A Time Called You ,’ shared his journey of continuous work and overcoming a mental slump. He highlighted the value of rest in his recent interview.

Speaking at a cafe in Samcheong-dong, Seoul, on September 18th, Ahn Hyo-seop discussed his experience working on the Netflix original series ‘A Time Called You.’ The series, based on the popular Taiwanese drama ‘Someday or One Day,’ tells the story of Jun-hee, played by Jeon Yeo-bin, who time-slips back to 1998 and meets a boy, Shi-hun, who looks exactly like her late boyfriend.

Ahn Hyo-seop mentioned that after working almost non-stop from ‘Dr. Romantic 2’ to his recent projects, he felt a bit awkward that these projects were releasing a year later. He admitted to experiencing a mix of excitement and apprehension, saying, “I wondered how I managed to film this. Looking at my own picture on Netflix, I felt different as a viewer who enjoys Netflix. I had high expectations. Thoughts came to me at that time.”

In ‘A Time Called You,’ Ahn Hyo-seop played dual roles, portraying Shi-hun in 1998 and Jun-hee’s late boyfriend, Yeon-jun, in the present. He explained that it was a challenging task to differentiate between these time periods and their respective characters. He said, “We talked a lot on set. We’ve never had so many discussions on any other set. We helped each other because we were in the same confusing situation. We planned it from the beginning and scheduled everything according to Shi-hun’s timetable, Min-joo’s timetable, and Yeon-jun’s timetable.”

Ahn Hyo-seop was also asked about the styling for his character Shi-hun in his 40s, which generated significant discussion. He explained, “I wondered how Shi-hun would have lived until his 40s. Would he have lived comfortably? I thought that, to save and return everyone, he would have put all his energy into that and might not have groomed himself properly. So I styled him that way. I grew a beard and applied dark makeup to my skin. I tried to pay attention to the details. I have no regrets because I had a clear intention.”

He revealed that playing multiple roles in one project was indeed challenging, as it required a lot of energy and imagination. He also noted that the eyes are crucial in conveying a character’s age and feelings, emphasizing the importance of eye acting.

When asked about time slipping in real life, Ahn Hyo-seop expressed curiosity about what his 40s or 50s might be like. He said, “I’m satisfied with my life day by day. I think I’m living each day to the fullest. So I have no regrets, but as I continue to live like this, I wonder, ‘Will I be the person I want to be at that time? Or will I be different?’ I have such curiosity.”

Regarding his ideal self in his 40s or 50s, Ahn Hyo-seop mentioned that he hopes to be a deep person. He said, “I believe in acknowledging change. I think change is necessary. I hope to be someone who acknowledges, pursues, and continues to learn from change. I want to be a person who can reflect on my own life without being tied to anything, someone who can meditate on myself.”

Ahn Hyo-seop shared that he had been continuously working since ‘Dr. Romantic 2,’ sometimes even shooting with one-month intervals. He said that looking back, he realized he could grow because he had experienced pain. He mentioned, “I learned the importance of rest. There were times when I couldn’t even think, and I experienced a kind of mental slump. My senior actors and directors at the sets gave me many encouraging words, so I overcame it well.”

Finally, he emphasized the importance of rest, saying, “Sometimes, you need to stop thinking to recover. I’m the type of person who can’t sit still even when I’m at home. If I don’t accomplish something in a day, I blame myself. So I’ve been able to feel the importance of rest, and I’ve spent hours sitting quietly on the couch. People often say, ‘When will you do it if not now?’ It’s a valid point, but even so, taking breaks and doing it is the right way. I feel really happy now.”

Ahn Hyo-seop is currently considering an offer to appear in ‘Reader’s Viewpoint,’ a drama based on a popular web novel of the same name. He expressed his desire to try action scenes, saying, “I’ve never done action properly. I mean, those cool action scenes, flying around and fighting well. I’d like to show a charismatic side of a middle-aged man. When the time comes, I want to work on my body and show that.”

He concluded by expressing his eagerness for the next project and his desire to showcase new aspects of himself as an actor.

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Author Nat.O
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