Last night saw the wonderfully talented actress Moon So-ri appear at a Q&A at the BAFTAs HQ, organised by the Korean Cultural Centre, London. Her appearance marked the first of four Korean actors coming to London as part of the KCC UK’s ‘Year of the 4 Actors‘ film programme. Prior to Moon So-ri’s visit, the KCC UK screened five films in which she starred, including Oasis and A Good Lawyer’s Wife. The final film in the Moon So-ri season, Hahaha, was screened before her Q&A with the film audience. We’ve written a bit about Moon So-ri’s career before, so if you want to find out about her and the films screened by the KCC UK, go here.
Last year, the KCC UK organised the ‘Year of the 12 Directors’ programme, which saw 12 of South Korea’s most prominent film directors come over to visit for a Q&A and film screenin. This year, for the ‘Year of the 4 Actors’, the format was much the same, where a press round-table Q&A was held before the screening of her film and then a Q&A open to the public afterwards. The venue for this year’s film programme was the prestigious BAFTAs at Piccadilly, a perfect setting to greet such a glamorous guest. As soon as Moon So-ri walked into the room for the interview, you could see what a classy and sophisticated lady she was, and everyone around the table was obviously struck by her presence. Although she was dressed very smartly and fashionably, and looked impeccable on all levels, she was immediately friendly and warm with everyone, smiling and introducing herself happily.
During the round table interview, a number of varied questions were asked, from her motivations in choosing roles and how she got into acting, to talking about her career as a Professor in Film Studies and how she sees the future of acting in Korean cinema. A full transcription of the interview can be seen at Hangul Celluloid, and many thanks have to go to Mr. Hangul Celluloid for getting this online so quickly, what a star!
Moon So-ri is a very animated person, and whilst answering questions she was very entertaining and captivating. She seemed very relaxed and happy to answer any and all questions, occasionally stopping to think carefully about her answers with a pensive look on her face. Moon So-ri is very expressive, both verbally and physically, and you can definitely see how her bubbly character has helped her in the many and varied types of characters she has taken on. When asked about her experiences of voice acting for in Leafie, she said how she found it suffocating as she wasn’t able to interact with another anyone. You can certainly imagine the ever expressive Moon So-ri feeling restricted in a room with just a microphone and not having anyone to bounce reactions off and act with.
It was very interesting to learn about her experiences acting, especially as Moon So-ri is a very open and honest actress. She told us about moments such as when she ran away during the middle of filming Oasis, as it was so difficult for her on several levels, and eventually Director Lee Chang-dong had to bring her back. Finding out such personal and real snippets of her life really gave us a fascinating insight into her and her life as an actress. Being so upfront and honest about her experiences showed how tough and strong you have to be in this industry. Moon So-ri is a woman who has had to face challenges in acting, and fight through difficulties, but she always strives to do her best for herself and those around her. She’s a true professional.
After the round-table Q&A, it was time for the film screening of Hahaha. As everyone settled down in the theatre, all seats were soon filled and everyone eagerly anticipating her arrival. When Moon So-ri took to the stage to introduce the film, we were surprised and excited to see she’d had an outfit change. So glamourous! It definitely added to her already amazing star aura. So stylish! After the film Moon So-ri reappeared for the audience Q&A. Before questions were opened to the audience, the host for the night, Tony Rayns, asked her a few questions about her role in Hahaha and Oasis. When the interview was opened up to the audience, many were eager to ask her questions. The audience questions included topics such as how she got her first role in Peppermint Candy, which might have been down to her excessive blushing (and the possibility that she might have resembled Hong Sang-soo’s first love), if she has any plans to appear in more TV dramas, nothing confirmed for the near future but never say never, and how she interacted with the directors she’s worked with. Moon So-ri is such a pro, she carefully and easily responded to all comments, even from the host (anyone at the Q&A will know what we mean). All too soon the audience Q&A was over, with battles right to the very end to ask the last question.
Moon So-ri is obviously very passionate about her work and truly loves what she does, and this came across throughout the whole of the event. Being able to interact with Moon So-ri was an amazing experience and she came across as a very fabulous and gracious person who’s had a very interesting and eventful life through acting. By the end of the day, we’re sure everyone was as enamoured with her as we were and sad it was over; we would have been very happy to talk to her for hours on end. From what she told us, we’re sure she would have many more great anecdotes about her life to tell and we hope she will revisit London soon! It was truly a pleasure to be able to talk with her and we hope she enjoyed herself as much as we did. She was a wonderful lady and a pleasure to interview. We’re all a bit in love with her now, and will be looking forward to to seeing her in her new films, two of which are out this year (An Ethics Lesson and soon to be released Mr.K). This was a brilliant night to start off the ‘The Year of the 4 Actors’ star appearances and we can’t wait for the rest of the actors to visit!
For the ‘Year of the 4 Actors’, the next person to be featured will be actress Jeon Do-yeon (Apr-Jun), followed by Choi Min-sik (Jul-Sept) and finishing up with Ha Jung-woo (Oct-Dec). Bring on the rest of the year! Bookings for the first of Jeon Do-yeon’s film screenings is already available on the KCC UK website – The Harmonium in My Memory starring a very young Lee Byung Hun! (11th April 2013).
We’d like to finish by saying a big ‘Thank You’ to the KCC UK for organising the whole event and the round table interview. It was a brilliant experience! And we highly recommend you check out the round table interview brilliantly and speedily transcribed by the awesome Mr Hangul Celluloid!