The captivating aura of Kim Bum
From "Boys Over Flowers" to "Tale of the Nine Tailed", exclusive interview with one of the most beloved and appreciated Korean actors
In the realm of Korean dramas, one actor has captured viewers' hearts with his exceptional talent and versatility – Kim Bum. Renowned for his ability to embody diverse characters, Kim Bum has proven himself to be a force to be reckoned with in the entertainment industry. One of his notable roles includes the captivating nature of Lee Rang in the hit drama series "Tale of the Nine Tailed," produced by Korea's leading scripted TV studio, Studio Dragon, a premium storyteller group that fascinates the world with their original stories.
Kim Bum, born on July 7, 1989, in Seoul, South Korea, has become a household name in the Korean entertainment industry. His acting journey began in 2006 when he debuted in the popular coming-of-age drama "Unstoppable High Kick." His performance as the lovable and mischievous Kim Bum showcased his natural acting abilities and immediately caught the viewers' attention. From there, he continued solidifying his presence in the industry through diverse roles showcasing his range as an actor.
Kim Bum's probably most notable project in his early career is the drama "Boys Over Flowers," a remake of the Japanese "Hana Yori Dango," where he portrayed So Yi-Jung, a skilled potter and part of the famous F4 group, along with his long time friend Lee Minho. His portrayal of this complex and troubled character garnered widespread praise and further established him as a rising star in the industry.
Kim Bum's talent and hard work have not gone unnoticed, as he has received numerous accolades throughout his career. He has been honored with the SBS Drama Awards, KBS Drama Awards, and Asia Model Awards, further solidifying his position as a respected and accomplished actor.
Over the years, Kim Bum has continuously challenged himself with various roles across different genres. In 2020, Kim Bum took on the part of Lee Rang in the fantasy drama "Tale of the Nine Tailed." Kim Bum effortlessly brought to life the complexities of Lee Rang, capturing the character's deep emotional struggles, internal conflicts, and hidden vulnerability. Adding to his remarkable portrayal in the first season, Kim Bum has once again stepped into the shoes of the captivating character Lee Rang in "Tale of the Nine Tailed 1938." His portrayal of the half-human, half-gumiho character was met with critical acclaim and further solidified his status as a talented actor. The highly anticipated continuation of the fantasy drama series takes viewers back to a different era, immersing them in a tale that intertwines supernatural beings with historical elements.
Panorama.it spoke with him in an exclusive for Italian readers.
Nice to meet you. We got accustomed to your character Lee Rang during the first season, but can you please introduce him to us in a more personal way?
Lee Rang is a character who would not greet others kindly with a 'Nice to meet you.' Instead, he would extend his hand for a handshake with a smile while simultaneously suspecting the person's intentions and unsheathing his axe, questioning, 'What do you want?' His past experiences of being wounded by humans have led him to develop self-defense mechanisms.
Which was the hardest scene to shoot in both seasons?
The scene in season 1, where Lee Rang meets Lee Yeon and converses on a rooftop, reminiscing when Lee Rang was wounded by Lee Yeon centuries ago during the Chosun era, was the most challenging. It was difficult to express emotionally, as the scene was filmed before the Chosun scene was, making it hard to visualize. It is the start of their brotherhood as a whole, which further heightened the difficulty of its portrayal.
How would you define the brotherly bond between Lee Rang and Lee Yeon? And how was it to work as Lee Dong Wook's little brother?
The brotherly bond in 'Tale of the Nine Tailed 1938' is still a fervent, intense, and sparks-flying relationship. They desire to kill each other more than anyone else but cannot stand anyone else trying to do so. No one is permitted to harm my brother, as only I am allowed to be the one who kills him. On set, I genuinely felt a brotherly bond with Lee Dong-Wook, and I imagine having an actual older brother would be similar to this experience.
Which are the differences between you and Lee Rang?
The biggest difference is that Lee Rang readily takes his axe out, but Kim Bum is more realistic and practical, rather than emotional.
If you had to find a strength and a weakness in Lee Rang, which would they be? And which is a strength and a weakness of Kim Bum?
Lee Rang's strength lies in his belief that his life is not worth protecting, while his weakness is those who consider his life to be valuable. Kim Bum's strengths include remaining composed, and resilient in the face of hunger, fatigue, or sorrow, while his weakness is that he has a hard time trusting people.
How will you define Lee Rang in one word?
To define Lee Rang in one word, it would be 'Thanatos.' Thanatos, as the personification of death, is similar to Lee Rang in how he has a desire to destroy, coming from the scars deep down in his heart.