We all know him as the lovable Dr. Yoon Pil Joo on kdrama Greatest Love, but singer-turned-actor Yoon Kye Sang has quite a backstory: he became massively popular in the early 2000s with boy band g.o.d. and then, like fellow singer-turned-actor Yoon Eun Hye, decided to completely transform himself into an actor toward the end of the group's popularity. He didn't dabble in both singing and acting as most singer-actors do these days.
Yoon Kye Sang in g.o.d.'s music video Lie.
"I didn't know it'd be this hard," said Yoon about his latest film Poong San Dog, which means a lot considering Yoon is no stranger to difficulty -- his road to becoming an actor was riddled with obstacles and setbacks.
Poon Sang Dog, directed by one of South Korea's most critically acclaimed directors Kim Ki Duk, required Kye Sang to grow a beard and work out maniacally to get the muscle definition he needed for the role.
"I've had experience with physically demanding shoots while filming the MBC drama Road Number One," explained Yoon. "It was a shame the drama didn't get as much love as I expected. I wanted a chance to work on another project like Road Number One, and then came along Poong San Dog. There were no lines for me to speak, so I looked forward to the challenge of having to use my eyes to convey my masculinity. I think this film will transform me."
It certainly seems to be a transformation. His expression below is so fierce! Can you imagine the Dr. Yoon from Greatest Love showing such rage?
"We're not doing this for the money," said Yoon of his latest film. "We're doing this because we want to work with Kim Ki Duk."
Poong Sang Dog is the story a man who sends messages across the North-South Korean border during postwar Korea. Yoon Kye Sang has always struggled to distance himself from his past teen popstar image, and this film seems to be a step in the right direction.
Still, I feel a bit conflicted: do I prefer Yoon Kye Sang as the clean-cut, gentlemen-ly Yoon Pil Joo or a rugged, rough-around-the-edges outlaw?