Crea Magazine, July 2017: Kyungsoo interview
[D.O.] is a main vocal of the well-acclaimed performance group EXO, and has gained popularity for his calm air. We went to Seoul to hear more, starting with his first romantic comedy.
Afternoon in Seoul in a studio by the Han River - he entered quietly and appeared suddenly at the corner I was sitting in, waiting for him.
“Konichiwa.” I rose and greeted thoughtlessly in Japanese, caught off guard. He bowed with an honest smile, replying with “konichiwa.”
Gray jacket and sneakers. Pale skin and thin, silver-framed glasses. The outfit made D.O. seem like an unassuming college freshman more than a celebrity.
He has been balancing acting with EXO’s activities for three years. In South Korea, where it takes time to be recognized as an actor, he stands out from even within EXO for featuring in projects alongside movie stars like Ha Jungwoo and Shin Hakyun.
South Korean artists often make their actor debut in school-life dramas, but in D.O.’s case, he’s left strong impressions acting as an alter ego (IOIL) and as a psychopath (IRY). Even his film debut (Cart) was a social critique of the treatment of precarious workers, where his character’s mother led labor strikes.
“Maybe because I go by my birth name for acting, apparently some who’ve seen me in a drama or movie are surprised to learn ‘that guy is in EXO.’ But to me, there’s no such distinction between singing and dancing as EXO or acting for a drama or movie. It feels natural to change for each circumstance. All I think about when choosing a role is if I want to try being him.”
His first romantic comedy, the webdrama Be Positive which released last fall, is a social phenomenon with over thirty million views.
“Hwandong dreams of becoming a movie director. He’s bright and restless, completely different from any other role I’d had, so he was novel. […] A lot like Hwandong, I try to be positive about everything. But I don’t seem to have the energy to start dancing on the streets (laughs). I don’t really like spicy food either. Ochazuke, kasuzuke! Even in Korea, I often visit Japanese restaurants. (When someone who works at SME) asks if I didn’t go to one just yesterday, I can’t lie about eating sushi again (wry smile).”