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In Her Final “Sweet” Drama… Jang Seo-hee

Posted May. 03, 2005 00:03,   


“I recently had plump cheeks during a photo shoot for a drama, but ever since filming started, I’ve lost 1.5 kilograms. I’m anxious because my character should be chubby, to go along with her bright and bouncy personality.”

Actress Jang Seo-hee (33) started to complain about her cheeks at a meeting in a restaurant in Neonhyun-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, on May 2. In a new MBC weekend drama titled, “Love Hymn,” set to air on May 14, she plays the role of O Soon-jin, an Italian restaurant manager. The position is nominal, as she is only a waitress who carries dishes. Jang, for whom this is a television comeback a year and two months after the last episode of “Carousel” in March 2004, likens O Soon-jin with the comic book heroine, “Candy.”

“My previous characters were strong-willed and often gloomy, but this role is like Candy’s, always positive whether she’s lonely or sad. Her name, ‘Soon-jin,’ comes from the first letters of ‘Soon-su’ (Innocence) and ‘Jin-shil’ (Truth). It’s comfortable to be in her skin because her bright and bouncy personality resembles mine. The similarity is so clear that Jeon Kwang-yul said ‘Seo-hee, just act like yourself.’”

Love Hymn deals with O Soon-jin’s success story. The letter “Chan” in Love Hymn (Sarang Chan-ga) stands for the Chinese character for food. As from the title, the main background of this drama is the Italian restaurant that O Soon-jin works in. She starts out as a restaurant manager and succeeds as an eatery business mogul. Coincidentally, a romance buds between herself and a third generation chaebol heir, Kang Sae-han (Jeon). Although the plot smacks of a cinderella-type story, Jang says this is obvious.

“There’s a proverb: ‘Where there’s effort, there’s no market.’ I want to tell people that the sun never sets on those who help themselves.”

Jang Seo-hee, who admits to being a Korean food maniac, is currently all but living in the Neonhyundong restaurant. She is working to become fond of spaghetti and pizza, foods she usually avoid in real life due to her queasiness at them. For the restaurant manager role, she is also receiving tutoring from an actual Italian restaurant manager to learn authentic Italian restaurant greeting techniques and basic manners.

“I’m determined to make the best of my last ‘buoyant’ and ‘sweet’ drama over the age of 30,” she said.