Park Hyung-sik goes big before his military service: The singer-turned-actor was cast in ‘Juror 8’ after appearing on reality show

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Park Hyung-sik goes big before his military service: The singer-turned-actor was cast in ‘Juror 8’ after appearing on reality show



Nine years after first entering the entertainment world as member of boy group ZE:A, Park Hyung-sik is finally starring in his first full-length feature film.

The 27-year-old singer-turned-actor is not new to being in front of the camera. Park has appeared in several drama series including “The Heirs” (2013) and “Strong Woman Do Bong Soon” (2017), taking on more prominent roles as the years passed. Park also earned many fans for his participation in the military reality show “Real Men” (2013), where he trained like a soldier along with fellow celebrities.

This year, Park is hitting the big screen as the lead in “Juror 8,” which also features actor Moon So-ri. The film, set for release on May 15, is roughly based on the historical 2008 trial that adopted the jury system for the first time in Korea. Park plays Nam-woo, a young entrepreneur who finds himself on the jury of a high-profile murder trial.

“Juror 8” marks an important point in Park’s career not only because the film is his big screen debut but also because it’s his last project before he enlists in the military. Beginning on June 10, Park will serve as a military police officer in the Capital Defense Command to fulfill Korea’s mandatory military duties.

“I hope that the movie does well and stays in theaters for a long time even after I enlist,” Park told Ilgan Sports, an affiliate of the Korea JoongAng Daily, during an interview on Wednesday. “Then I will also be remembered a bit longer in people’s memories and not regret the time I will be gone.”

The following are edited excerpts from the interview in which Park discusses his role in “Juror 8” and how he has been preparing for his military service.


Park Hyung-sik stars in the new film “Juror 8,” based on Korea’s first trial with lay jurors. [CGV ARTHOUSE]

Q. What kind of a character is Nam-woo and how did you prepare for the role?

Nam-woo has no legal knowledge. But he’s the type to dig deep into issues that he doesn’t know about and has a hard time making decisions. He holds himself responsible for his choices.

I wanted to prepare for the role a bit beforehand but the director told me not to because of Nam-woo’s character. So I didn’t study and headed to the set without thinking too much.

In my previous drama “Suits” (2018), I played the role of a genius lawyer who memorized entire law books, so I could recognize some of the legal terminology said by the actors playing the judges, prosecutors and lawyers in “Juror 8.” It was hard trying to ignore it.

What was it like on set?

Director Hong Seung-wan told me that the reason he cast me was my performance in “Real Men.” He thought my attitude toward learning one thing at a time reminded him of Nam-woo.

But I starred in “Real Men” four or five years ago. Since then, I’ve gotten to know the world better and perhaps become less innocent. When I approached my character rather aggressively, Hong was a bit taken aback […] We settled our differences through several meetings.

We actually had to film one of the first scenes where I say “It’s my first time learning about the jury system” about 27 times. Moon So-ri gave me a lot of good advice.

Do you feel nervous about your first movie?

In some ways, filming dramas is scarier because it’s more difficult to look back at my performance on drama sets. It isn’t impossible but since there are so many scenes to film, I feel like I’m taking away time if I ask them to give me time to review myself. I usually have to wait until the episodes air to get feedback. But with movies, it’s easier to ask the director if I could review the shots. Although time is still tight, there are more opportunities for me to put on a better performance.

Why did you apply to serve in the Capital Defense Command?

Though I faced many hardships while filming “Real Men,” I had the advantage of trying out different units. Actually every unit is really challenging, and I can understand why people always claim they were at the toughest unit.

When I was at the Capital Defense Command I was nicknamed Sniper Park. I was good at target practice. Even though it was a few years back it’s a good memory. I wanted to go somewhere I had the most fun and could show off my talents.

Did fellow ZE:A member Im Si-wan give you advice about the Army?

He just told me that time flies. Guys don’t really comfort one another. I think he’s telling the truth, even though I might not feel that way when I’m actually there.

What kind of movies do you want to star in after your service?

I personally like movies like “My Annoying Brother” (2016) and “Twenty” (2014). I want to be in films where I can have fun filming with actors my age.

I also like the noir genre, but I also want to try entertaining movies like “Money” (2018).


'배심원들' 박형식 "첫 촬영만 27번 NG, 멘붕에 당황"

박형식이 생애 첫 상업영화를 선보이게 된 소감을 전했다.

영화 '배심원들(홍승완 감독)' 개봉을 앞두고 있는 박형식은 8일 서울 삼청동의 한 카페에서 진행된 인터뷰에서 "'배심원들'이 첫 영화다. 촬영 초반에는 다소 어색해 했다고 하던데"라는 말에 "감독님이 남우 역할로 나를 캐스팅 한 이유가 '진짜 사나이' 때 모습 때문이라고 하더라"고 운을 뗐다.

박형식은 "'진짜 사나이'에서 아무것도 모르고 하나씩 배워가는 모습에서 남우와 비슷하다는 느낌을 받으셨다고 했다. 근데 '진짜 사나이'는 이미 4~5년 전 출연한 프로그램이다. '배심원들'은 20대 후반에 만나게 됐는데 아무래도 그 때보다는 덜 순수하게 변하지 않았을까 싶다"고 귀띔해 웃음을 자아냈다.

이어 "어느 정도 세상을 알게 됐고, 캐릭터를 연구함에 있어서도 순수하다기 보다 뭔가 공격적이게 다가가니까 감독님 역시 당황하셨다. 감독님은 계속 나에게 '아무 생각하지 마세요. 연구하지 하세요'라고 했다. 배우에게 연기 연구를 하지 말라고 하시니까 다툼 아닌 다툼도 있었는데 몇 번 미팅을 가지면서 서로간의 의견이 맞춰졌다"고 설명했다.

하지만 첫 촬영 분위기는 또 달랐다고. "'이렇게 하면 되겠구나!' 하면서 갔는데 미팅 때 이야기 했던 것은 다 사라지고 감독님이 원하는 무언가를 찾아 가시더라. 그래서 '배심원 제도가 있는지 처음 알았는데요'라는 대사만 27 테이크를 갔다. 어떻게 보면 아무것도 아닌 대사고 그저 한 마디 하는 것인데 그걸 그렇게 많이 했다"고 토로했다.

구원 투수는 선배 문소리. "문소리 선배님에게 SOS를 쳤다"고 회상한 박형식은 "나는 나대로 너무 당황스러우니까. 미팅 때 했던 호흡은 어디가고 감독님이 마이웨이 하시니까. 그 배신감은~"이라면서 호탕하게 웃더니 "혼자 촬영장에 버려졌는데 SOS 칠 수 있는 사람이 선배님 밖에 없더라. 졍말 좋은 조언들을 해 주셨다"고 고마움을 표했다.

'배심원들'로 상업영화 데뷔 신고식을 치르는 박형식은 극중 재판이 진행되는 당일 급하게 8번 배심원으로 선정돼 재판에 참여하게 된 청년 창업가 권남우 역을 맡아 열연했다. 어리바리하지만 포기를 모르는 집념의 캐릭터를 박형식은 자신만의 스타일대로 표현, 몰입도를 높인다.

지난 2010년 보이그룹 제국의아이들로 데뷔한 박형식은 드라마, 예능 등 브라운관을 통해 활발히 활동하며 제 존재감을 알렸다. 데뷔 9년만에 선보이게 된 첫 영화 '배심원들'은 박형식의 입대 전 마지막 작품이라 그 의미가 더욱 크다. 수방사 헌병대에 합격한 박형식은 오는 6월 10일 국방의 의무를 지기 위해 잠시 떠난다.

2008년 우리나라에 처음 도입된 국민참여재판의 실제 사건을 재구성한 '배심원들'은 첫 국민참여재판에 어쩌다 배심원이 된 보통의 사람들이 그들만의 방식으로 조금씩 사건의 진실을 찾아가는 이야기를 그린 영화다. 15일 개봉한다.

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