Song Joong Ki and Song Hye Kyo may have met on the set of Descendants of the Sun, but it looks like that could be the first and last time you’ll see the Song-Song couple acting together in a drama or movie.
Speaking to the local media at the press conference for The Battleship Island star tour in Singapore, the 31-year-old said he would need to give it more thought when asked if he would act with his wife-to-be Hye Kyo in the future. “I think it will be challenging because work is work. It may be a little tough to work on the same production,” he said.
But don’t be disappointed yet because he hasn’t eliminated the possibility!
The actor also said he would be inviting The Battleship Island director Ryoo Seung Wan, and his two co-stars, Hwang Jung Min and So Ji Sub – all of whom were present at the press conference – to his wedding. “Of course, I would be honoured if the director and my two co-stars can attend the wedding. I will definitely invite them,” he said.
Scroll through the gallery for more highlights from the press conference.
So Ji Sub on the happy pill on the set
“The happy pill on set was Kim Su An, who plays So Hee in the movie. As a child actress, she has a very bright character, and is very cheerful. So whenever she is on set, she makes everyone laugh.”
So Ji Sub on sustaining injuries during filming
“There was a lot of preparation put into filming those action scenes. I took about one-and-a-half month to prepare – down to every detail – for each scene, so I didn’t sustain any major injuries while filming.”
Hwang Jung Min on preparing for his multi-talented character
“As for the clarinet, it’s something I’ve been playing for years, even before I was cast in the movie. As for the Japanese lines [in the movie], that was something I memorised.”
Song Joong Ki taking on the role of a soldier again after Descendants of the Sun
“In the movie, I play a special agent that was dispatched by Korean Liberation Army. If you count the number of years I’ve served national service in Korea, as well as playing the role of a soldier in Descendants of the Sun and also The Battleship Island, I’ve been living the life of a soldier for about five years. It has become something natural; it has grown on me. I had short hair after serving national service, so I could just comfortably immerse myself in the role.”
Song Joong Ki on being the youngest actor on set
“I didn’t feel any pressure for being the youngest. Apart from [child actress] Kim Su An, I was the youngest on set. I felt comfortable being the maknae (youngest) on set, and everyone, all the big brothers, took good care of me. They gave me good advice, and I felt that the chemistry among the actors was well-balanced, which put me at ease.”
Hwang Jung Min on whether the movie was his most challenging one to date
“I had two concerns when I filmed this movie. The first was a sense of fear, because the set was so real and so massive, and it really re-enacted the Battleship Island from many years ago. So there was a sense of fear that was very overwhelming when I first set foot onto the set. Also, the story is about survival – surviving and escaping from the island. In the movie, I play the role of a father who has a young daughter to protect, and at the same time, I had to make sure she’s well taken care of. So, I had a lot of deep thoughts into these two aspects.”
The director on the significance of the last scene
“I can’t reveal too much in case of spoilers, but if you watch the movie, especially the ending, there’s a transition from colour to black-and-white. That also signifies the past, the present and the future. So the little girl who underwent the atrocities that took place on the island, survived and escaped the island eventually, signifies our past. But at the same time, she also directs us to the future. She also exemplifies our future. As she stares into the audience, I wanted her eyes to meet the audience’s because I wanted the audience to feel; to be placed in the situation where they can put themselves in the shoes of the character’s, and by looking back at the past, you can think about where you’re going in the future.”
Song Joong Ki on his favourite scene
“For me, it’s the mass escape scene towards the end of the movie. It’s not just about the rapid sequence or the cinematography, but also the sadness. It really the depicts the suffering and hardships that the captive labourers went through on the island.”
Hwang Jung Min on his favourite scene
“My most memorable scene would be where my character Gan Ok plays with his daughter using the long rubber band. And as he plays with the rubber band with her, he also sings and holds her high in the air. That scene really moved me because within the island, the environment is very harsh, and yet that scene reminded me of fathers and daughters back in their hometowns. It brings me memories.”
So Ji Sub on his favourite scene
“My favourite scene is the ending, where the camera zooms into the character So Hee. Her expression really shows the pain and suffering she went through, as well as hope. And it also shows the past and present.”
The actors on who has the best survival skills
So Ji Sub (39 years old): “I think Song Joong Ki probably has the best survival skills because he’s the youngest and not too long ago, he served his national service. So I’m sure the skills from the training are still fresh in his memory.”
Song Joong Ki (31 years old): “I think it’s me because I’m the youngest.”
Hwang Jung Min (46 years old): “Other than Song Joong Ki, for the rest of us, a big or massive movement would cause pain to us [because of our age].”
So Ji Sub on which stage of his life he’s in
“I’m not very sure what stage I am in my life. I think I can only answer that question after some time has passed, as I look back at the role I played in this movie.”
Hwang Jung Min on which stage of his life he’s in
(The emcee pointed out that he looked like he was deep in thought)
“My face is naturally red, so you might think I was deep in thought, but it’s just my natural face colour. It’s a very challenging question because it made me think back about my acting journey. And for some reason, I’m feeling a little embarrassed and ashamed of my journey so far. It’s a very complex feeling. As an actor and entertainer, I communicate to the audience through the roles I play and the movies I work in. I always try to choose works that I want, and I think the audience would find entertaining. But that question made me pose another question to myself, on whether I’m doing right. Are all the decisions I’ve made so far the right ones?”
Song Joong Ki on filming dangerous action scenes
“It wasn’t just my action scenes that were dangerous – all of them were. Because The Battleship Island had a great staff and crew members, it made a lot of the filming less dangerous. The hardest thing about this movie for all the stars is that we had to lose weight to play the role of the captive labourers because they were skinny due to malnutrition. So that was one of the toughest things about the movie.”
The actors on what they find most charming about one another
Hwang Jung Min: “You’re asking a man what they find charming about another man? Is this the right thing to do? (Laughs) I’m kidding. For So Ji Sub, his real-life character is very solid, but he has a gentle side to him. That solid character about him makes me want to rely on him because he’s very responsible and reliable. For Song Joong Ki, I feel that he’s very considerate. As I worked with him, I felt that his parents have raised him well because he’s very well-mannered and very considerate.”
So Ji Sub: “I think one of the most charming parts of Song Joong Ki is probably his looks – he can charm both men and women. For Hwang Jung Min, I feel that he is suitable to be a great leader. He’s a very big person – in terms of both personality and his capacity as a human and actor.”
Song Joong Ki: “[For Hwang Jung Min,] I felt that he has an immense level of concentration when he’s acting. That’s something I really want to learn as a junior actor. [For So Ji Sub,] as Hwang Jung Min mentioned, he’s a very genuine person and has a lot of depth to his character. He doesn’t talk much, so instead of speaking a thousand words, he shows it through his actions. I really look up to him in that aspect. Going forward, when I reach his age, I aspire to be someone like that.”
The Battleship Island opens in cinemas island-wide on August 17, with sneak previews from August 11 to 13 in Singapore.
Images: Hidayah Idris