The name ‘Super Junior’ is not only ours now. As the Leader of K-pop, they’re gaining fandoms not only in Asia but also in the US, Europe, Latin America, Australia, etc. Instead of the ‘untouchable superstar’ image, their familiar and natural charms are more dominant. The average age of the members are now 27 years old. They have dramatically transformed from some cute younger boys, to some warm oppa(s). The culture of South Korea will be incomplete without the presence of their talent and charms in radio, musical, movie, or drama. We had the chance to work with Donghae from Super Junior for his 2nd solo photoshoot. A year ago, he was nervous for his first acting challenge on ‘It’s Okay, Daddy’s Daughter’.
During the phase, SJ had gotten more popular and Donghae had turned 27. He might have obtained and achieved so many things during that period of time, but his warm and comfortable aura remained the same. The photographer didn’t ask for much pose from him during the photoshoot. In an empty 2nd-floored house, he was just walking, standing by the wall, or merely staring at the camera while thinking. He was being silent during the entire shoot, but he showed his full-of-confidence way of talking during the interview where he expressed his happiness to be part of Super Junior. He regretted not being able to meet the fans around the world due to time constraints and military service. He also confessed how problems come naturally as he gets older. And at the end, he said while laughing “I just live the way I want to!” The word ‘the way I want’ was heard as a “declaration of war”(?) which is full of passion.
EG: You did a unit promotion with Eunhyuk, how was it, to stand only with only two members on stage?
It was fun. ‘Oppa is Here’ was originally a song for our concert. We planned it because we wanted to give disco concept a try. The responses we received were good, so at the end, we decided to promote the song on music programs for a month.
EG: Men like to be called as ‘oppa’, what about you?
I used to act normal when I heard it, but lately, I feel good every time I hear it. Haha.
EG: The drama ‘Skip Beat’ with you and Siwon in it has become quite a hot issue. You guys bear significant resemblances to the characters in the comic. It’s like seeing another side of Donghae that we can’t find in Korea.
We worked so hard to play similar roles to the characters. I dyed my hair, and put on a strong eye make-up. But when I saw it on screen, it was not that bad. If I have the chance, I also want to show another side of me through drama/movie roles in Korea.
EG: When we first met before ‘It’s Okay, Daddy’s Daughter’, you told us that you really wanted to jump-start your acting career. How was it after your first attempt? Was it as much fun as what you expected?
It’s really fun. Well, only if it’s not as freezing as today. Haha. I want to do it in the future too. I want to shoot a movie in Korea, and also shoot a drama in another country in Asia. Actually I still feel awkward to pose in front of the camera. It’s more comfortable for me to act instead.
EG: Because you work a lot with staffs around the world, I believe you are getting used to work with foreigners.
Yes, I’m used to it now. There are some staffs that have been working with us since years ago for our concerts or commercial filming. Also the hotels we stay in.
EG: Which overseas concerts that have left the sweetest memories to you recently?
We had a concert for 4 days in Taiwan. I was told that we are the first overseas singer to perform for 4 consecutive days in Taipei Arena, Taiwan. We also got to stand in front of 80.000 people in Japan, even though we never had an official promotion in Japan. It was an honor. I’m also looking forward to our concert at Tokyo Dome in May.
EG: Last year, you guys also performed in NY and Paris. How was it to be in the core of Hallyu craze?
I think that K-pop will be even more popular in the future. I think it’s way easier and more comfortable to make a debut in another country these days. I’m still fascinated by the fact that overseas fans actually listen to our songs, or even make a flashmob for us. We’re sorry that we can’t visit Chile, Australia, etc, even though they invited us.
EG: Your Twitter followers have surpassed 1 million.
There wasn’t anything much that I could do for fans beside promoting in music programs. So I made a Twitter account to introduce them to my daily life.
EG: Now that Super Junior has greatly expanded its popularity and garnered more attention, your greed and goal must be bigger now.
To speak truthfully, I want to travel all around the world, if I did not have to enter the military. Even if I meet only 100 fans, I want to find them. How I wish that we could have a full year of concert tour.
EG: Really? Isn’t it exhausting to perform frequently overseas?
It’s tiring, but all of the tiredness are gone as soon as I stand on stage. We did a 4 days concert in Taiwan for about 4-5 hours each day. We were not sure at first if we could do it. But the moment we stand in front of our fans, I could feel everyone’s genuine support and excitement. Because our members are active in variety shows, they could make fun remarks. Our fans also showed different attractions every day with their lightsticks etc, so I can’t help but feel touched.
EG: Super Junior took home the Daesang from Golden Disk Awards in January, and also another 4 awards. I think it was a quite a special night.
Our feelings constantly change every time we attend award shows. We tend to cry whenever we receive an award. The memories of the hard times we had to go through in the past always came into mind. We always say to each other “Let’s be a singer who can receive another award next year. Let’s make a record that only SJ can make.” It’s great to be able to fulfill the promises that were made with our members.
EG: Have you ever felt that your debut was so long long ago?
Nope, the memories are still fresh as if it was yesterday. I think that time really flies. Kyuhyun likes to film us with a camcorder where ever we go. Not the moments we share on stage, but the side of us when we play with one another. It’s fun to watch it once in a while. Videos of us skiing, having BBQ, or falling into the water. Good way to recollect the memories.
EG: You must be proud to see the members active in variety shows, not only on stage.
We always have this mindset since debut: “If it’s not this, just die.” When the camera was turned off, sometimes the seniors would say “You guys speak too much already, so just shut up now.” But the members would still work hard, until they could get the recognition. Leeteuk-hyung always says that no matter how witty you are, you just can’t beat someone who is well-prepared. So I always come prepared for variety shows.
EG: You became a couple through a meeting on “We Got Married”. Seems like you’re shy and nervous, is it your real feeling?
It was not an acting. It was my first time attending such meeting, so I was shy.
EG: I guess you’re interested in someone like Seo Eunseo who has a lady-like charm.
I prefer a lady-like woman. It’s not aired yet, but we had another date. I had fun filming it. I’m usually quite a silent guy on screen, and Seo Eunseo is also the quiet type. So I only talked as much as I could.
EG: I heard a rumor that you guys are going to be a permanent couple on WGM.
There is no official words on this yet. But I always wanted to make an appearance on WGM. I think I fit in there better than the other show simply because I can enjoy it comfortably and there is no acting necessary. That said, people can give a good response about it, or bad ones.
EG: Recently you wrote the lyric and was featured in As One’s new song, ‘Only You’. The lyrics are really sweet.
I had a connection with As One noona(s) before this, so I naturally collaborated with them. I had been working on it every single day. The song was composed back then. I did it when I had some free time in the dorm or on the airplane.
EG: You continue to receive overwhelming love from the fans, and just started acting just like what you wanted. Do you have anything more to wish for?
For Super Junior to become the leader of broadcast channels? If I appear in the show which Leeteuk-hyung hosts, he will take care of me. I also want to be a helpful member for the others in a different section.
EG: The average age of Super Junior this year is 27.5 years old. You guys have turned into ‘adult-idol’.
When I see my friends, they all look old. But when I see our hyung(s), they’re not old at all. It’s unbelievable that Sungmin-hyung is 28 years old! I still see him as a 23 years old man. I’m also 27 years old, but I don’t feel like an adult at all. I’m still a dongsaeng who could still use the help from my hyung(s). I just wanna have fun.
EG: As a 27 years old man, are you leading your life well?
I don’t know. First, I want to be in a relationship. I guess that’s why I ended up doing WGM. We have many things to prepare at our age. And also a plan to buy a house. I naturally have that kind of thoughts. I didn’t have it before though. I started to think about it since last year. When the stress started to pile up, I would end it by telling myself ‘Whatever. Let’s just live the way I want’.
EG: So for this year, what kind of ‘the way I want’ things that you want to do?
First, I hope we could end ‘Super Show 4′ successfully. I also want to shoot many drama and movies. And I also have to send Leeteuk-hyung to the army. Haha.
Source: ELLE girl, worldwideelfs.wordpress