Actress Moon So-ri (47) occupies a unique position in the Korean film industry. As confirmed by the filmography, although she is an ‘acting actress’ who has played the lead in many works that have achieved great work and box office, it is far from the splendor or mystery that comes to mind when you think of ‘actress’. Rather, the familiar image of a ‘conceptual actor’ who seems to constantly worry about ‘political correctness’ (he declared public support for the Democratic Labor Party in 2004) coexists with the image of a ‘conceptual actor’ who does not look different from those who lead ordinary lives. In 2015, with her husband, director Jang Jun-hwan (51), she established ‘Yondu of Film History’ and, in addition to acting,) and producer () also came out.
The reason I met Moon at a cafe in Jongno-gu, Seoul on the evening of the 12th was that he had published a children’s book for adults. (Walking in Mind) is the story of ‘Dharma’, a dog with a disability who lost one leg in an accident. Dharma is a Jindo dog that the Moon family adopted 15 years ago from a monk at Baekyangsa Temple in Jangseong-gun, Jeollanam-do, along with Bori (Dharma’s sister). Moon is donating the entire royalties from this book as a donation to the ‘bear sanctuary (protection facility)’ for the rescued breeding bears from the brink of death.
Raising disabled dogs and becoming a reductionist… Inse sponsors ‘Bear Sanctuary Construction’
– How did you get published?
“It was a long time ago, but when I was 4 or 5 years old, my daughter Yeon-doo and my nephew Soo-young, who were speechless, asked why the dharma had three legs. Orke, a special education teacher in kindergarten, glued several sheets of A4 paper together and then put short texts and pictures on them to tell the story of Dharma. It was a project of my family, including my parents, to expand this story recently and record Dharma’s old age. Dharma and Bori are 16 years old, and in human terms, they are said to be 100 years old. Unlike barley, Dharma is not very healthy.”
When Moon adopted Dharma and Barley, his family started living in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province, where his family had a large yard. No one in the family had ever had a dog, so it was awkward. Dharma, which has the characteristic wildness of Jindo dogs, liked to run around in the mountains and fields. One day, he was lying in front of the gate, covered in blood. The upper part of the forelimb was broken, and the bones did not attach, and eventually one leg had to be surgically removed.
– Growing daruma and barley gradually changed your life.
“I thought only humans were the owners of the earth. But there were also animals, trees and grass. I realized that it is important to live well together. As I became interested in animal rights, I became opposed to factory farming and led a vegetarian lifestyle. I used to eat dog meat without thinking, but now I don’t eat red meat at all. I am becoming a reductionist trying to cut down on plastics and other consumption for the benefit of humans, animals and the natural environment.”
– Have other family members changed?
“My husband is very interested in the local dogs wherever he goes. The younger brother and sister adopted one of the puppies of a ‘little’ rescued by animal rights activist Kara. One day, Yeondu, who eats all kinds of food, saw a sign for Bosintang and asked what it was. When I explained it, I was shocked that I had to report it to the police. I think that sensitivity is important. I try to often have conversations with my daughter about the process of what I eat and what foods are good and bad.”
-Moon So-ri is a film directed by Lee Chang-dong. You played Han Gong-ju, a person with severe cerebral palsy, in (2002). I must have had a different feeling to see the disabled dog Dharma.
“When I was playing the role of the disabled, I often felt a similar sense of alienation. For example, when I am in a wheelchair, I can vividly feel the feeling of not being on the same level as other people. How special and strangely you looked at me… . When I went for a walk with Dharma, I felt those gazes a lot along with pointing my fingers. I thought a lot about whether it would be okay to just accept disability as something different. No matter how tall or short a tree is, whether it is large or small, it is just beautiful even if it comes in various shapes… , I do.”
– Director Im Soon-rye and actor Kim Tae-ri wrote recommendations. All royalties are donated.
“It will be used to support the Bear Nest Project and ‘Bear Sanctuary’ led by Kara, an animal rights activist. The two groups recently rescued 15 domesticated bears that were in danger of death by sucking bile on humans while trapped in a narrow cage. It is said that there are still close to 400 such bears in Korea. The construction of the Bear Sanctuary, which will be a haven for rescued bears, is a project to help these creatures live their own lives.”
Questions about the reactions of reporters on ‘It’s not a good look’… You must be an actress who shares various beauty
His acting career was clearly divided between the 2000s and 2010s. 1999 film directed by Lee Chang-dong He debuted in 2002 with the role of ‘Soon-im Yoon’ and was also directed by Lee Chang-dong. She achieved the feat of winning the Best New Actress award at the Venice Film Festival. after (Directed by Im Sang-soo, 2003), (Director Chan-sang Lim, 2004), (Director Park Heung-sik 2005), (Director Taeyong Kim, 2006), (Director Soon-rye Lim, 2007), (Director Hong Sang-soo, 2009), and other films that have been recognized for their work and topicality, have taken the lead roles one after another. However, it slowed down in the 2010s. It is rare for him to take the lead role and make a big impression on the public. Director Im Sang-soo (2010) in a supporting role, directed by Park Chan-wook. and her husband, director Jang Jun-hwan (2017) made a special appearance. And that boundary overlaps with the time when he gave birth (2011) after marriage (2006).
– Each 10 years before and after giving birth in 2011 shows a marked difference in filmography. You must have been thinking about what marriage and childbirth mean to an actress.
“Each actor has ups and downs. It’s nothing special to me. In the beginning of my debut, I enjoyed a lot of good works, so there are also downhills. I think life is more like that of an actor. Still, I think I’m lucky. After giving birth, there were fewer works than before, but there were conflicts as well, but anyway, I continued to work. Genre is drama (MBC) ) and plays () was expanded. I appreciate it.”
– What is good acting, what is art?
“It’s probably one of the questions I keep asking the day I die. Including why I’m acting. Even if I give an answer now, it will change, and there is a high possibility that it may not be the right answer. I’m not going to give an answer hastily. It’s a question that we have to explore until we die.”
– I once expressed my desire to appear in a movie directed by my husband, Jang Jun-hwan. Even though it’s the closest person, it doesn’t work.
“Director Jang, where am I the only actor who wants to appear in a movie? Anyway, he doesn’t make movies often, and there aren’t many female characters yet. I’ll call you someday if you need me. (Director Jang) is not a lobbyist. If I write it, it will bother me properly (laughs). The actors and staff really like Director Jang after the work is done, but the director is so tenacious that it is difficult during the work.”
– Director Jang will be starring actors from both the United States and the United States. (2003) directs the American remake of the film. What stage are you at now?
“I’m in the process of adapting a screenplay in Jeju Island, where my husband has a studio.”
– You’re away from your husband.
“It won’t be easy to work on a screenplay while you are with your family. Above all, my husband is faithful to his family when he is at home. So, except for the time we had been together for a while after giving birth to Yeondu, we did a lot of weekend couples. I think it’s fine for my family’s lifestyle. I am not a person who commutes to work every day, and I often stay in the countryside for several months when I work. Others may think it’s a strange family type, but we all get along well.”
Like McDormand, who won an Academy Award for his movie, he is greedy as a producer and director.
Director Jang and he established ‘Yeondu, a film company,’ in April 2015, named after his daughter. The representative is director Jang, and he is listed as a director. Directed by Jang, the movie drew 8 million viewers to the theater. (2017), directed by Ms. Moon (2017) and participated as a producer (2020) were all produced by Yeondu.
– What was the reason you went into directing and producing?
“I like making movies. Acting, directing, and producing are all things that make a movie after all. The reason I entered the Graduate School of Advanced Imaging Science at Chung-Ang University in 2013 was because I didn’t major in film or acting (graduated from Sungkyunkwan University’s education department), so I always had regrets. When Yeondu was a baby, it felt like my energy was exhausted. So I decided to study film, and studied directing for two years. is an omnibus of three short stories I made as an assignment while attending graduate school.”
– Do you have any plans for the next production of Yeondu, a film company?
“Hahaha… . There is no such thing. If you come up with an interesting idea, you can direct it, or if you want to try something like this after having a mock party with your movie buddies, you can produce it. The best actor, Frances McDormand, made his own She won an Academy Award for Best Actress. As a good actor, producer, or director like her, I also want to make a work.”
– is a fiction, but the life of ‘actor Moon So-ri’ is also mixed. You sublimated your appearance into humor in the play, but have you ever actually had an appearance complex?
“no. The first reaction of some reporters I met immediately after debuting as ‘I don’t look like an actress… ‘ It was. ‘okay?’ I thought to myself, ‘I grew up hearing people say I’m pretty in the neighborhood… ‘ I thought. And I started to wonder. I couldn’t help but pay attention to what people expect of an actress to be pretty, what it’s like to be beautiful, and how they consume it. Ultimately, I have a sense of responsibility.”
– What kind of responsibility do you mean?
“shows Han Gong-ju and asks this question head-on. ugly? Do you know why? Is their love bad? Isn’t love beautiful? doing… . I’ve been thinking. Is an actress a job with a sense of duty to show off her beauty in front of the public? Shouldn’t that be the case? Isn’t the beauty we think of is too uniform and commercial? My conclusion was that I had to become an actress who shares more diverse beauty and strong beauty because it is a job that affects many people.”
– That’s why you don’t do plastic surgery.
“Hahaha… . As I was thinking about it, I lost track of time. And I’m always thinking about how it’s good to get old. As an actor, I want to grow old as cool and powerful as McDormand. Unless it’s McDormand’s wrinkled, wrinkled face I can’t do such an overwhelming performance in a movie.”
– Then, how does aging approach to Moon So-ri, a natural person?
“Now that I naturally consider even death, I see the world more broadly than before. I think I’ve been able to see what’s important in life and what I’m missing out on more transparently. So I think that if you grow old well, you can become wiser. I don’t want to live a life that I try to keep, to stay. There is no right answer in life, but I know what to do to make it more fun and happier, so I plan to live a life that searches for it.”
– Comparing top-ranking male and female actors in their 40s and 50s, what do you think about the reality that there are still few casting opportunities for actresses?
“So I have to do well. I have a lot of work to do. Feminism is a social trend, and it is a very important period in the history of women’s movement in Korea. I’m going through this era, and I can’t say I don’t know. I am an actress and a senior. If not, I’ll have to make my own. I also want to play a role so that not only women’s stories but more diverse stories can be planned and consumed.”
– You publicly supported the Democratic Labor Party in the past, but are you still a member of the Progressive Party?
“no. After leaving the Democratic Labor Party, there is no party to support. At the time, I became a member of the progressive party because I thought it was very necessary, but it was hard for me to endure the factional fights in it.”
It will play a role in planning and consuming not only women’s stories but also more diverse materials.
Three years ago, his family moved to a four-story terrace-type apartment in Dongtan New Town, Hwaseong-si, Gyeonggi-do, overlooking the lake. It is a corporate-type rental house with a deposit of 300 million won and a monthly rent of 500,000 won. Most of the time in this house is spent with him, Dharma, Bodhi, and the three of them. My parents are in the same building, but two stories downstairs, and I followed my uncle’s family who moved to Jeju Island, Yeondu-do, and then transferred to an international school there. Moon’s mother, Hyangran Lee (69), who became a hot topic earlier this year as a senior model, became more independent as she was freed from childcare work. Mr. Lee is known to have sacrificed his whole life by making a living by selling food stalls and toasts, and feeding his two grandmothers, children and grandchildren. Throughout the interview, Mr. Moon was very candid and humorous. he is “I hope the readers feel the warmth through it. Not only between people, but between people and animals, and between people and nature… “He said.