Shin Se-kyung, first cross-dressing woman, “I like the visual”
Shin Se-kyung, first cross-dressing woman, “I like the visual”
Actress Shin Se-kyung takes on the challenge of acting as a cross-dressing woman for the first time.

tvN's new Saturday-Sunday drama 'Sejak, The Bewitched' (hereinafter referred to as 'Sejak') is a story about the cruel fate of King Yi-in, who holds a high position but has a lowly heart, and a woman who becomes Sejak (a spy) to bring him down. It is a fictional historical drama based on imagination, and is expected to lead the historical drama craze in the first half of 2024, based on the subject of 'Sejak', a spy who hides his identity and secretly finds out secrets or situations and provides information.

'Sejak' is attracting increasing interest as it is a romantic historical drama directed by Shin Se-kyung, known as 'Trustworthy Treasure'. Regarding the reason why she decided to appear, Shin Se-kyung said, “The script was really fun. “There were many attractive elements, such as the romance between Lee In (played by Jo Jeong-seok) and Hee-su, politics, and complex psychological changes between characters,” he said, guaranteeing the fun of the work. In addition, regarding expectations for his undefeated performance in historical dramas such as 'Deep-Rooted Tree' and 'Six Flying Dragons', he expressed humility by saying, "If only I can express (the character) well, it will be a great story."

In addition, Kang Hee-su, played by Shin Se-kyung, is a Se-jak who secretly approaches King Yi-in with a desire for revenge. Regarding the character, Shin Se-kyung said, "Hee-soo's biggest charm is that she does not give up and moves forward on the right path she thinks of. It will also be interesting to see how Hee-su, who seemed solid without any flaws, becomes fascinated by Lee In and becomes dangerous like a lantern in the wind." added.

Meanwhile, after Shin Se-kyung's cross-dressing visual was first revealed, she drew a warm response with favorable reviews calling it 'Shin Se-kyung's extraordinary transformation'. For the first time in her acting career, Shin Se-kyung said, “I thought a lot about how to set the tone of Hee-su’s voice. As Hee-su is a character deeply involved in political issues, there are many scenes where she interacts with people who know her identity and people who do not. However, when I was having a normal conversation with a character I knew to be a woman and then a character I didn't know appeared, I thought it wouldn't fit the tone of the drama to suddenly change my tone of voice to sound like a man. “During the initial meeting, the director and writer also said that I should not force the male voice but rather adopt a natural tone so that I can blend in well in various situations,” he said, revealing his extraordinary efforts. Also, “Personally, I liked the visual of Kang Mong-woo in his coat, so much so that I jokingly said, ‘I like the cross-dressing better.’ “It was comfortable and light enough to be said to be my favorite outfit, and the lines looked clean, and my fellow actors also complimented me a lot on my cross-dressing visuals, saying, ‘It really suits me,’” he said of the reactions of those around him.

In addition, Shin Se-kyung said about playing the male character Kang Mong-woo and the female Kang Hee-soo, “I thought that Hee-soo in the early part of the play felt free because she was able to achieve things that a woman’s body could not do when she was dressed as a man. “I thought it was natural that my behavior as a man and as a woman would be different, and that my body posture would change depending on my outfit and situation,” he said about the differences in acting. In addition, “However, I wanted to express well how the boundary gradually breaks down as Kang Mong-woo, a cross-dresser, begins to feel excited as a woman after meeting Lee In. “Now, as a viewer, I am waiting to see how the scenes containing the sparkle of first love will be completed,” he added.

Meanwhile, the chemistry between Jo Jung-seok and Jo Jung-seok in the drama is also something to look forward to. Shin Se-kyung said, “It was really great to work with senior Jo Jung-seok, whom I had always wanted to meet, through ‘Sejak’. “The chemistry on set was by far the best, and I really learned a lot from my senior,” he said. “There were situations where I was physically and mentally exhausted because of the fairly long filming, but thanks to my senior who always respected and considered me, the trip to the set was always enjoyable and I filmed with a lot of laughter. “I was happy,” he said about the atmosphere at the scene, raising expectations for the two’s acting chemistry.

In addition, Shin Se-kyung said the attractive point of Lee In, played by Jo Jung-seok, was, "It's really cool that he silently protects Hee-su by her side, makes sacrifices, and supports the path that Hee-su wants to take." Also, regarding the relationship between Lee In and Kang Hee-soo, “The relationship between the two seems to be ‘When you love, you hope to live, and when you hate, you hope to die.’ “I thought it was a love-hate relationship that goes back and forth between life and death, as much as the complicated emotions that the two people built up.”

Shin Se-kyung also said that the most memorable scene in the drama was “the ending of Part 8,” adding, “I thought it was the most important sequence in the drama, and I hope it comes out well as everyone did their best to ensure high quality.” Also, “I remember as I was closing the last page of the script for Part 8, I was itching to read Part 9 right away. “I hope viewers will find it interesting as well,” he added.

Lastly, Shin Se-kyung personally selected the viewing points of ‘Sejak’. He said, “It is a storm-like development, three-dimensional characters, and not simple romantic emotions,” and raised expectations for the broadcast by saying, “I hope viewers will enjoy the excitement I felt while reading the script.”

Meanwhile, tvN's new Saturday-Sunday drama 'Sejak, The Bewitched' starring Jo Jung-seok and Shin Se-kyung will be broadcast for the first time on January 21, 2024, and will be specially scheduled for the first and second consecutive episodes.

Ten Asia Reporter Kim Seo-yoon translated by google