October 27, 2006 08:09
“After I finish my vacation, I think my heart may be filled with trees.” Screenplay gems seem to stick in the memory forever, and with the way actress Eom Ji-won puts her all into her role, her performance will linger in the minds of audiences for some time. The film that opened this year’s Pusan International Film Festival, “Traces of Love,” was the vehicle for the actress’s rediscovery. With the fluidity that is born automatically from frank and simple acting, the actress is enchanting. Appearing with the “two greats” Yoo Ji-tae and Kim Ji-su, being entrusted with the lead role was “very intimidating.”
“Ji-su is a veteran of soap opera on the small screen, and Ji-tae is veteran of the big screen. So I thought that just as long as I did well, things would turn out fine. But any little mistake seemed like it would be so noticeable, so it made me very worried.” In this film, Eom Ji-won has to hold her own alongside the two giants. It wasn’t easy. Since she only makes her appearance halfway into the film, one little mistake could easily give rise to antipathy.
As a survivor of a department store collapse, her character is troubled by re-emerging trauma. She did a lot of research into the role, studying news and documentaries about the 1995 Sampoong Department Store collapse and even read over psychology texts. As the fruit of her labors, she was able to create a character that expresses the sorrows of those who lived through the tragedy.
She set the atmosphere on the set. When she did the scenes buried in the rubble after the collapse, it was extremely trying for her, but she still managed to laugh about it afterwards. Finishing the 10-month shoot with no major problems is also a testament to her character.
Just like her character in “Traces of Love” Eom Ji-won loves to take trips. They “got over their post-trauma difficulties and nursed their wounds -- everything turning out well made my heart grown light again. I hope that this fall turns out the same way.”
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