Vogue Girl (VG): In the meanwhile, you’ve become more widely known as Boys Over Flowers‘ Gu Jun Pyo rather than by your own name, Lee Min Ho. As an actor, you’re going to have to bid farewell to this name; have you already began this process internally? Or is it too early for your heart to leave behind Gu Jun Pyo?
Lee Min Ho (LMH): I didn’t particularly think that I have to part with it; the process began quickly without me realizing it. You see, I’ve been doing other work without a break after completing Boys Over Flowers. Without time to even feel the aftereffect of Gu Jun Pyo, [the character] is becoming distant.
VG: There’s tremendous discussion on your every action. Through many articles and rumours, [your fans] have been exposed to much speculation on everything beginning from your love life. You must have definitely been scarred. By any chance have you – in a short time – [adapted] a coping method to minimize the scars or shock? Ignore it? Be understanding? Be resigned to it? Be sympathetic?
LMH: I think it’s none of [the above]. Even though I try to ignore it, I’m still hurt to an extent; then I try to be understanding, but it’s incomprehensible (laughter); if I decide to resign myself [to the rumours], they still get on my nerves; with no need for further explanation, I think it’ll be impossible to sympathize. I just get angry, but forget about it because I’m simple-minded; my anger rises when I remember it again and then calms down… That’s what it’s been like.
VG: Although it’s evening here in London, it’s 6am in Korea yet you just received a prank call. It must be annoying when getting these inconsiderate calls.
LMH: There’s a lot of truly unique people from those who prank call. As well as people who are fun[ny]. I don’t answer with hostility because they [could be] fans. First I pick up the call and get a rough idea of the situation; after I hang up, I save the number as spam so that I don’t answer next time. These days prank calls are done so intelligently that I fall for them often. During the shoot earlier, I got a call saying, “It’s me, Eun Hye!” Since I actually have a friend named Eun Hye within my network I thought it was her, but it was a prank call. It’s like that.
VG: Do you directly look up reviews or article comments about [Boys Before Flowers or yourself]?
LMH: I don’t look too much. Because of the recent Benz rumour I read a little and there really were so many negative comments. It was the first time I saw that many. I got a lot of scars too. If it was really something I did (buy the car), I would have agreed and reflected over my mistake. But I was hurt that there were such negative comments attached to an article written based on presumption.
VG: You seem to handle the explosive interest quite well, not feeling too burdened.
LMH: It’s not as burdensome as one would think. But there are times when I’m surprised. Really trivial matters are publicized and become news articles. That’s burdensome.
VG: Some people say the way for Lee Min Ho to survive is to shed the Gu Jun Pyo image as soon as possible, while others say that your next project should be a lovelier one that shows off Gu Jun Pyo’s charm. Which way are you more inclined to?
LMH: Both are the same. If I suddenly shed Gu Jun Pyo and take on a completely different role, I think it would feel strange and unfamiliar to viewers. Because [Gu Jun Pyo] was such a strong image. But then if I did a similar role, I suppose people would say that there’s no change. There’s nothing I can do either way. I think I’ll have to shed it progressively.
VG: Looking back at the Gu Jun Pyo that Lee Min Ho portrayed calmly in the midst of filming with barely enough time to breathe, how do you feel?
LMH: There’s so many parts that were lacking. Every moment. Because it was a drama that was filmed with time chasing us, I think there was insufficient time to adequately investigate and grasp the character. I think the great response [from viewers] was because of the good character Gu Jun Pyo, and they were easy on me since I’m a rookie actor.
VG: As Lee Min Ho, an actor in your twenties, are you satisfied with your face, voice, and other parts of your body? And if there’s a part you’re dissatisfied with…..?
LMH: Yes. I’m satisfied. But I’d like it if my voice was a bit deeper. There are times when a slightly nasal sound comes out, so that’s a bit dissatisfying.
VG: As an actor, is there another actor’s appearance that you covet?
LMH: I like the appearance of someone who can clearly show both a face of virtue and a face of evil. Which actor can do that? Ah~ I can’t remember. (Thinks for awhile) Forget it. This. Even if I covet it, I can ‘only’ covet it. Then…. just…. there is none (laughs)!
VG: Besides for getting extremely famous from the success of the drama, what’s the happiest aspect of your life these days?
LMH: Experiencing many things that I’ve wondered if I’d ever be able to do in life. Also that my parents are happy. I’m content when I see my mother’s smiling face. She was happy for me when I first said I’m pursuing acting, and she’s happy just to see me on TV.
VG: If you have one, what’s your clearest and nearest goal at the moment?
LMH: To show a good image with a good project. In May, I’ll complete the schedule that was a result of Boys Over Flowers. In June, I’ll get some personal time that I haven’t been able to have. The plan is to discuss my next production after that.
VG: How would you like your twenties to be remembered?
LMH: I’d like it to be the busiest time of my life. I want to do lots of productions and lots of work. I want to be remembered as Lee Min Ho who lived diligently and worked hard.