Go A-ra is one of those actresses who made a sensational debut then experienced a long period away from the mainstream, with her career apparently falling by the wayside.
After winning over fans as the lead character in a teen drama in 2003, she picked a string of films and dramas that challenged her artistically but failed to gain any commercial success. This could have meant the end of the road for a less persistent or talented actress.
However, Go's situation changed unexpectedly in the second half of last year when her baby-doll image was reimagined through the tvN drama "Reply 1994." In the show, Go plays the role of a laidback tomboy college girl -- and audiences quickly warmed to the character.
Critics also hailed her unpretentious portrayal of what looked like a challenging role. Little did they know it came easily to Go.
"I thought a lot about how I could portray her better and more naturally throughout the production, but my family and friends told me that she was similar to how I am in real life," said the actress.
"I'm just grateful that people can associate me with such an unassuming and easygoing image."
She said filming "Reply 1994" was an emotional experience and the actors and production crew formed a tight bond. "We all cried when shooting ended. We took group photos to celebrate completing the project and that was one of the happiest moments of my career. I don't think that kind of chemistry happens often," she said.
She said she is not in any rush to pick a new project for 2014, but wants to take her time and make the right choice. "I'll decide on the next move after carefully reading the scripts that come my way," she said.