Published on August 28th, 2016 | by porninja0
Sky’s the limit for rising actor Kang Ha Neul
Kang Ha Neul’s star has risen exponentially over the years — and with good reason too. Besides his charm and good looks, he’s also got a good head on his (rather broad) set of shoulders. During ONE’s Scarlet Heart media conference held at The Westin Singapore last Friday, we were struck by how humble and hardworking the 26-year-old actor came across. “It’s my second time here in Singapore,” he said. “Back then, I didn’t expect such a large number of people to recognise me. There were a lot of fans!”
Looking clean cut with his hair cropped short, Ha Neul was all smiles as he made his way to the stage. He was courteous and bowed continuously, pulling off the boy-next-door act easily. In fact, he said so himself that he’s just your average ordinary guy and explained that he’s not particularly good at martial arts or studying — unlike his Scarlet Heart character, 8th prince Wang Wook.
“My real-life image is very different from that,” he chuckled, pointing at the poster behind him. “You might be surprised to know but I, Kang Ha Neul, is just a very normal person.” Yes, a normal very good-looking, very talented person, that is.
When asked about the expectations that people may have regarding his upcoming period drama, Scarlet Heart, a remake of the Chinese hit Bu Bu Jing Xin, he said that while there’s no doubt a lot of pressure to be part of the production, he’s also honoured to work alongside big names like IU and Lee Jun Ki, who have all made the filming process a fun one. Particularly, he expressed his respect for PD Kim Gyu Tae, whose previous works include That Winter, The Wind Blows and It’s Okay, That’s Love.
But what can we look forward to in terms of his character Wang Wook? “Maybe a kiss scene?” the emcee of the day asked teasingly. “No, no, no…” he said, laughing shyly. He emphasised the scale of the production and mentioned that the cinematography and sets are on another level altogether. But the growth of his character was what attracted him most to the role of Wang Wook, and how he learns to let go and follow his heart’s desires.
If you’re familiar with any of Ha Neul’s past works, you’d notice that they’re all a little bit different from one another. As Wang Wook, he exudes royal charms but who remembers how he started out playing a gruff sportsman in 2012’s To the Beautiful You? He then did a musical role in Monstar before achieving fame as part of the ensemble cast of the popular office drama Misaeng. The reason for that is because he’s drawn to roles that are able to bring out different traits within him that he never thought he’d possess.
Something he’d like to try next? “The role of a young dad,” he answered, without much hesitance. “I’m curious to get into that mindset of how such a person with that kind of responsibilities would feel.”
During the short time we had with him, Ha Neul never failed to surprise us with the amount of thought and maturity behind each and every one of his answers.
When faced with the question, “If given the chance, would you travel back in time or take a peek into the future?”, he paused to think before replying that he’d choose to go back in time to make the right decisions that would bring about a positive outcome in the future rather than look into the future, knowing that he wouldn’t be able do anything to change it. Wise words, indeed. But we’d answer differently because we’d sure love to fast forward in time and indulge in all the episodes of Scarlet Heart in one go — this waiting game is torture.
Do remember to catch the back-to-back, two-episode season premiere of Scarlet Heart on Monday (August 29) first and exclusively on ONE (Singtel TV Ch 513 & 604 and Starhub TV Ch 124, 820 & 823)! You’ll be watching it at the same time as Korea at 9pm. Subsequent episodes will air every Monday and Tuesday at 9pm.
For more information about the series, visit www.ONEtvasia.com/ScarletHeart.
To further satisfy your fix, catch Ha Neul and his fellow cast members Lee Jun Ki and Hong Jong Hyun on Running Man, which premieres this Friday, 2 September, at 11pm on ONE.
We also caught up with Ha Neul at Waterway Point over the weekend as he played games with fans and promoted the premiere of his drama, Scarlet Heart. Read all about it here!
Dinoseoul would like to thank ONE TV ASIA for the media invitation. Don’t forget to check out more pictures from the press conference on our Facebook page here. For HQ pictures, do visit our Flickr here.