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Go Ah Sung Discusses Her Performance In 'Office' And Reflects On Her Portrayal Of Yona In 'Snowpiercer' [EXCLUSIVE]

By Adrienne Stanley | November 11, 2015 02:41 PM EST


Go Ah Sung exemplifies the potential of former child actors, particularly those who cherrypick their roles, while working with esteemed directors. At age 14, she delivered a spellbinding performance as Park Hyun Seo in the acclaimed Bong Joon Ho film, "The Host." In 2013, she teamed up with director Bong to portray Yo Na in his dystopian flick, "Snowpiercer." In her latest role, Go embraces the terrifying persona of an intern who is on the brink of destruction in "Office." She slowly unfurls as Lee Mi Rae, a character whose name embodies hope, but possesses a dark spirit. KpopStarz sat down with Miss Go during her recent appearance at the New York Korean Film Festival. During her interview, she discussed the factors she uses for selecting new roles and the way sets like the sumptuous mansions of the Korean drama, "Heard it Through the Grapevine," influence her performance.

KpopStarz: Is this your first time in New York? What activities have you enjoyed, during your visit?

Go Ah Sung: Yes, it’s my first time, here. I walked a lot and I was happy that there were many parks in the city.

KpopStarz: You delivered a phenomenal performance in “Office.” What influenced your decision to accept the role of Lee Mi Rae?  

Go Ah Sung:  I’m a psychology major [at my university]. Regardless of the age or gender of the role, Mi Rae is a case where someone can immediately change or erupt. She’s not a born psychopath, but something really clicks and makes her that way.

KpopStarz: Did your studies as a psychology major in university help to shape your portrayal of Mi Rae or emotionally fragile roles like Seo Bom in “Heard It Through the Grapevine?”  

Go Ah Sung:  Sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn’t. Because psychology includes human behavior, I read several psychology books to prepare for Mi Rae.

KpopStarz: What is the amount of time you dedicate for transitioning from one role to another?  

Go Ah Sung: In the past, I needed at least three months. But recently, I have been in many films. I’m beginning to think it doesn’t have to be that long.

KpopStarz: “The Beauty Inside” featured an ensemble cast of more than 20 talented actors and actresses, but you appeared in a very important scene for Woo Jin. Can you please describe the filming process? Were you able to see footage from the other actors, prior to filming your segment?  

Go Ah Sung:  Yes, the director showed me the other [actor’s] footage. There were big name actors in that film, but regardless of their age or gender, there was one identity, [Woo Jin]. I felt comfortable with all of them.

KpopStarz: Do you prefer working on thrillers like “Office” and “Thread of Lies” or science fiction projects like “Snowpiercer?”  

Go Ah Sung:  From a viewer’s perspective, I like thrillers. But for that reason, I am more discerning when accepting roles in thrillers.

KpopStarz: It is more difficult to film roles that are based within realistic situations versus science fiction? 

Go Ah Sung:  I think there is a trend, right now. In the '70s and '80s people were really specific and exact with their sayings or expressions, when acting. Actors were more precise and accurate. Now, performance is more natural, with the flow of expression. For example, when you talk, you don’t pronounce everything correctly. For science fiction roles like “Snowpiercer,” even though it is fictional, I acted naturally. So, it can be every day acting.

KpopStarz: What was the on-set dynamic of the actors in “Office?”  

Go Ah Sung: Acting in the film was difficult because we all became very friendly and very close. But we had to portray the Korean social hierarchy, which is very strict, in an office. That was tough.

KpopStarz: “Heard it Through the Grapevine” was a drama that resounded with domestic audiences and incorporated gorgeous cinematography. What influenced your decision to accept the role of Seo Bom?  

Go Ah Sung: It’s entirely the director, Ahn Pan Seok. I think he’s the best. I’m not someone who does continuous drama roles. But “Heard it Through the Grapevine” was more dramatic than film. It was really refreshing and a new experience for me.

KpopStarz: You were 14 years old when you appeared in “The Host.” What did you do to get over the intimidation of being on a film set at such a young age?  

Go Ah Sung: I wasn’t intimidated, I found it very interesting. I think I find myself influenced a lot by sets. This started with “The Host.” “Snowpiercer” had an entire train, that was interesting, and “Heard it Through the Grapevine,” had the huge house.

KpopStarz: In "Snowpiercer," your character Yona appears to have supernatural powers as she always seems to know what was behind each locked door. What are your thoughts on this? Did Bong Joon Ho give you any hints to her supernatural abilities or origins?  

Go Ah Sung:  Director Bong explained that Yona is the second generation of the first-born people on the train. Unlike the first generation, she is used to listening for different noises, so she can hear without seeing everything. As a baby, she became used to the sounds. She has an ability beyond the noise.

KpopStarz: What are the major differences between acting in film and a Korean drama? 

Go Ah Sung:  TV dramas and film are very different. Dramas factor in the reaction of the viewers. With film, you finish the movie, then wait for the reaction.

KpopStarz: Would you consider acting in another television role, in the future?

Go Ah Sung:  I think I can.

KpopStarz: What upcoming projects are you the most excited about and why?  

Go Ah Sung: I just finished filming “A Memory to Remember.” It will be shown in Korea, in 2016. I am currently considering other roles.

Tagged :  Go Ah Sung, office, Snowpiercer, Heard It Through The Grapevine, New York Korean Film Festival


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