Nate News Reporter 배선영 [Bae Seonyoung] got the opportunity to interview smoking hot Big Bang member T.O.P on his thoughts about being part of the highly anticipated movie ‘Into the Fire’.
Before the interview, I wondered briefly whether I should call him T.O.P or Choi Seung Hyun. In the end, both T.O.P and Choi Seung Hyun were used together without any awkwardness throughout the interview.
To promote the movie ‘Into the Fire’ (directed by Lee Jae Han), which is to premiere this June, I met T.O.P on May 20th at a café in Seoul. Unlike other idols-turned-actors who discard their stage names and encourage the use of their birth names with remarks like: “Forget the image of me that you see on stage,” T.O.P, Choi Seung Hyun did not neglect either Big Bang’s T.O.P or actor Choi Seung Hyun.
Rather, today T.O.P says, “I think about going back to the stage now”. Putting the past several months behind him, during which he was mindlessly busy with the hit drama ‘IRIS’ and movie ‘Into the Fire’, he had been thinking about the next step and “for now I think that I want to return to being the musician T.O.P. I have a mindset that I shouldn’t neglect either side.” It was neither an escape nor abandonment; it was simply a glimpse into the 24 year olds efforts at finding a balance between acting and music.
Then how would one score T.O.P’s first big screen acting debut? The movie has not yet officially debuted yet but the movie critics’ opinions are high. T.O.P’s fierce gaze as seen in the movie trailers has also heightened expectations. Cha Seung Won, Kim Sang Woo and other acting seniors who starred in the movie complimented T.O.P on his acting, and critics have acclaimed, “This is T.O.P’s movie. This is T.O.P’s rediscovery”. T.O.P’s own reaction is downplayed, however.
“Looking back, it’s an honour to be part of a film with so much meaning at my age. But even while I was filming I didn’t really think about that stuff. Until filming ended, I didn’t have much freedom of mind to think about it.”
He does say however, that his level of satisfaction is high. “I can’t really give it a score, but I put my all into it and I feel satisfied. I wasn’t myself as I was filming ‘Into the Fire,’ he muses as he thinks about his efforts.
He continues to say: “Even now I have a brotherly relationship with direction Lee Jae Han, who has a similar personality to me. We would talk a lot in his office even before filming began, and I thought about how I wanted to temporarily put the existing T.O.P aside, and really become the character in the movie. The director said, ‘I don’t know how good your acting abilities are as of now, but let’s put everything on the line and do this.’ As we talked about things like this, we adapted mindsets and what-not that I would use before going on camera to develop my character in the movie.”
Having such a conversation however, T.O.P’s efforts in separating actor from singer became pointless. He is an artist who is immersed in both acting and music simultaneously. Though he still avoids putting more importance and emphasis on one or the other, he has also learned to put his all into both and becoming the best he can in both worlds.
Suddenly, I became curious as to what type of person T.O.P. would be at the age of 30.
‘What do you think we’ll see of you when you’re 30?’ At this question, T.O.P.’s answer was as follows:
“I can’t really guess, but I want to become someone who is unique in all things. I want to become a person that is so fresh, to the point where people call me a monster. I want to become someone who incites expectations and curiosity in everyone who hears my name.”
To end T.O.P left us with the saying, “it’s easy to become a cool person. But to become a curious person, that’s hard.”