MBC TV drama The Moon Embracing the Sun which remains only 4 episodes breakthrough the 40 ratings mark on episode 16. As a mid-short run miniseries, it’s unprecedented after 2010 TV series King of Baking, Kim Takgu. This drama about the fictional love story of king at Joseon era, is not unreasonable to call it “national drama.” On the 26th, the reporter interviewed PD Kim Doh Hoon on the set at Yongin City, Gyeonggi-do. After Kim Do Hoon joined MBC in 1996, he has mainly produced modern dramas such as “Spotlight” and “Royal Family,” he often tweeted through Twitter to reveal behind the scenes and difficulties faced by the drama, the popularity is not lesser the actors. Kim Do Hoon said, “In the beginning, was looking at the ratings of between 15% to 20% if everything goes well, but I never thought that it would be so popular. I am also the member of MBC union, but also the producer of the drama, I feel sorry (for cannot participate in the strike).” The following is translated to English interview summary:
Q: What’s the reason for the success?
“The desire to make a historical drama that audience of all ages like plays a role. Recently, the sageuk historical drama is divided into orthodox historical drama liked by people around 40 and 50 years old, and historical romance drama liked by obsessed female fans around teens and 20 years old. But I want to make a historical drama that is well liked by audience of all ages. In the first episode, through the scene of murder of the king’s young half-brother due to the conspiracy of the consort clan, to raise the curiosity of the audience who likes the orthodox sageuk. At the same time, the content with romantic element also attracts younger audience. Of course, because of the excellent acting of actors, in order to become a good work.”
Q: I heard that the production conditions in the beginning were not very good, was it so?
“Because of producing GyeBaek, God of War and other historical dramas, it was only finalized by the end of August 2011. Not only did not have sufficient production budget, but the director also was not yet been determined, that’s why me who has no experience producing historical drama hastily took office. The ratings for historical dramas broadcast before then were not very good, so there was more pressure. In addition, during filming was suffering due to cold weather. But seeing such a good response and praise, we carry on nonetheless. Haha.”
Q: In the past, romantic historical drama used to cause the controversy of distorting the history, do you take into account about this?
“Because I hate it, so at the beginning of every episode it’s clearly indicated that ‘the drama is purely fictional.’ Only system and etiquette of the Joseon royal family are reflected to the maximum. Hope to give the audience the feeling of vague reality and unreality.”
Q: Do you satisfied with the acting of the actors?
“Lead actor Kim Soo Hyun interprets very good the image of wanting to become a good king yet having a little uneasy. He is an actor with both rational and emotional acting style. A lot of young actors look into the mirror to practice lines, but Kim Soo Hyun always ponders alone. I feel that he is not thinking about how to shoot each scene, but pondering the nature of acting.”
Q: The acting of lead actress Han Ga In caused acting controversy, how do you think?
“The bright girl Yeon Woo (the name of heroine in the drama) was framed and then became a shaman who lost her memory, thus the acting skill that the adult Yeon Woo needs to portray is even more complex and subtle. Han Ga In was a little bit worry when just starring to shoot, but now I’m one hundred percent satisfied. Seeing the performance of crying at the moment of restoring the memory, I feel she has fully immersed into the role of Yeon Woo.” (laughs)
Q: Feel that the contribution of the supporting roles are hug, how do you think?
“I involved in the 90% of casting. (Laughs) In particular, the teacher Kim Young Ae who perfectly displays the image of ‘evil woman’ through the role of Queen Dowager was invited by me after repetitive requests. Watching her vivid performance from the side, feeling that she never grows old even if 100 years pass. the acting of Jung Eun Pyo who plays the role of eunuch for the king Hyung Sun, Jeon Mi Seon who plays the role shaman Jang Nok Young who takes care of Yeon Woo and other supporting actors are very good.
Q: The background identity of the original author, the mysticism author Jung Eun Gwol is not made public at all, how much do you know about him?
“I also do not know what kind of person he is. Even in the TV station and production company, no one person contacted him. Recently heard through an intermediary that he said ‘Thank you very much to make a good drama. Wish to ask the actors and the crew for dinner, and so I’m looking forward to the day of meeting. Would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude. The works with the merit of containing both emotional and narrative, are very rare among Korean TV drama, therefore can only produce a good drama.”