Kim Tae-hee appears as an equestrian in a scene from "Grand Prix," which opens in theaters on Sept. 19.
/ Courtesy of Sidus FNH
By Lee Hyo-won
The success of the blockbuster TV series ``Iris’’ seems to have prompted Kim Tae-hee to strive for more.
``Previously I wasn’t too conscious or desperate about the size of the audience or viewership ratings, but I’m feeling a little greedier after the popularity of `Iris,’’’ the screen beauty told reporters in Seoul, Thursday, while promoting her new movie ``Grand Prix.’’
Kim shared the pressure and hopes she felt about box office scores ahead of the film’s opening on Sept. 16.
``I usually feel relaxed after wrapping up a project, but this time I have become anxious and worried seemingly due to the heavy weight on my shoulders.’’
Such a competitive spirit drives Kim’s screen persona as well. In “Grand Prix” Jun-heui (Kim) suffers confidence problems since an accident during an equestrian race. She decides to call it quits and leaves for Jeju Island. There she meets U-seok (Yang Dong-keun), who is experiencing similar issues, and is encouraged to enter a cutthroat competition.
Yang Yun-ho, whose filmography includes ``Iris’’ and films such as ``Holiday’’ and ``Fighter in the Wind,’’ directed the movie.
Kim said pressure was high during the shoot, since it was her first time to star in a piece where the heroine has a larger role than the male lead.
For her part she met and interviewed actual female equestrians. ``I think they possess pure, innocent souls because they work with animals. I tried my best to portray that aspect,’’ she said.
On working with horses, she said she was initially fearful about riding one but fortunately there were no accidents. ``I was able to discover the charms of horses as I spent four or five months with them. I’d like to continue horseback riding in the future,’’ she said.
Meanwhile Yang replaced Lee Jun-ki in the film when Lee was drafted to complete his mandatory military service. The director said that the dynamics between the male and female characters was completely edited following the change in the cast.
For Yang the movie marks his comeback since serving in the army. ``I wanted to work so badly during my military service. I guess you could call it a fervent desire for acting. This is funny since I used to complain by saying, `I don’t want to work’ or ask myself, `Should I quit?’’’