BUSAN — If you’ve seen a Korean blockbuster this year, chances are you experienced Cho Jin-woong’s fine acting. A Japanese feudal lord in “Roaring Currents,” a drug-dealing detective in “A Hard Day,” and a medieval gang member in “Kundo: Age of the Rampant” are some of the roles Cho took on recently. He will be emceeing BIFF’s closing ceremony, a recognition of his belated rise to the spotlight.
You’ve been in several major films, but people say they don’t have that impression.
I take it as a compliment. It means I did a decent job for those characters.
Since your first role as a gang member in 2004, you’ve played many violent characters.
I prefer conversations to fights in real life. I think I get cast in those physical roles due to my build. There is a certain epiphany when you shoot fight scenes, though.
You play a Japanese feudal lord, in “Roaring Currents.” That can’t have been easy for a Korean.
I didn’t speak a word of Japanese before the shoot, so I asked a Japanese actor to record the lines. I practiced like crazy.
Your next film, “We Are Brothers” is a comedy. What other genres do you want to try?
I want to play a romantic lead. There must be an avant-garde director out there who’d do that with me.
Ready for the closing ceremony?
Busan is my hometown and BIFF began when I was a kid. It’s like returning home having finally achieved something.