Sunday, August 19, 2007

Dancing with Jang Hyuk in Singapore

THE CALL came on Friday.

Finally, after giving up all hope, I will finally have a chance to 'rub' shoulders with Jang Hyuk the next day. I was told to bring executive and casual wear. Oops, I haven't worn executive suits for a long time. Will I still fit into the pants? *Tiffany sweating away as she digs out her executive suit. Whew...luckily I could...but only just. big meals the next day in case my button the middle of filming. Hahaha!

I was to meet at XX mrt station whereby a bus would pick us up. When I reached there with Urs at 12.30pm, there was already a crowd there. We filled the bus and half of us had to stand. It was really quite interesting as there was a wide rage of 'extras'. From teenagers to ladies to uncles and aunties..the age range from 18+ to 70+.

We reached the filming site after a short ride of about 20 minutes. I found it totally fascinating...with street names, signatures and buildings that looked and sounded familiar---Queen St, Cluny St, Tiger Beer, Chan Brothers.... ^^

Briefing was given to the background- that's us. The extras.

1)No photography of the set or the actors
2)No autograph
3)No talking to the actors

Any violations of the above rules and we will be thrown out immediately. So you will have to excuse me for this post as I have absolutely no photos.

Filming would not start till later in the afternoon as the main cast wasn't quite ready. It seems they were filming till after midnight the day before and got up a little later than expected. So it would be lunch first for us and then we would have to be made up and get our hair done.


Really? For extras too?

No, it was not elaborate made-up. Just face powder to take out the shine and rouge to make sure we didn't come out on the screen looking flat. And hair spray/ gel were used to ensure our hair stayed in place. Many of the extras had lots of pins in the their hair to make sure they were neat.

So for about 10 minutes, I felt like a movie star whilst someone brushed and teased my hair into place and another one powdered my face, making it presentable for the screen....just in case the camera catches my face. And if it does, every single pore, pimple and wrinkle would be seen. YEEWW! I should have used a face mask the previous night. Hahaha! By the way, do not wear glitter on your eye make up..unless you want to end up looking like a Christmas tree on screen.

It was a street scene, so all the extras would be involved.

They made sure that there was a there were students, executives, aunties, uncles, couples etc. I was in my executive wear. Hehe!

And then it was action time.

We were positioned on the 'street'. Each of us had to do something... walking, sitting, drinking, running and there was a timing for all. It was totally fascinating. A strange new world to me totally.

A friend asked me later what was my role as an extra.

I replied: walking on the street

Haha! Hehe!

I've often heard that a short 5 minutes scene may take up to 2 hours. And I found out today just how true that is.

We were made to rehearse and do the same thing about 4 to 5 times. Just the extras or background as we are called... without the main lead. They would come later when we had rehearsed our position well.

And although we weren't the leads and the focus won't be on us, we still had to 'act'. That means we had to pretend to talk, look something... real life in reel life.

So far, still no sight of Jang Hyuk, Jason Scot Lee or Fann Wong..... Where are they? Who will be in this street scene?

And then suddenly... He was in front of me. JANG HYUK

Woah! I breathed in deeply!

He was dressed in army cargo pants. I can't remember the top...think it was brown. Hehe! I was busy looking at his face and body.

He is actually quite small size – for a Korean actor that is, where most actors seenms to be at least 1.8m but he was just right for me. Hahaha! However he's got a nice build and is well proportioned. Nice physique. ^^ He looks thinner. I heard from the casting director that he's been under lots of stress. Learning dancing, martial arts and English all at once.

Learning and speaking in English would be a killer for him. It's not easy to master another language and I applaud him for his bravery in attempting in doing something so difficult. But I'm certain he has no problem understanding it as the director and everyone else speaks to him in English (except for his gorilla Korean manager).

And then...I learnt where he would be in the scene.

Urs and I would be walking towards him and he towards our direction on the we would be within touching distance as we past by each other. I know all the Jang Hyuk fans would be dying to have this once in a lifetime chance. ^^

And suddenly, I really like my part as a walking passerby. ^^

As I walked towards him, I could see his face clearly. Hmm... really not bad...not bad at charisma.

We did a retake...and then another retake...and then another retake. Not that I was complaning... I could see him in action up close.

His expression in that scene? Let's just say it reminds me of the bad tempered Dr Gi Seo in 'Thank You' before Yong Shin changed him.

Unfortunately, I couldn't see what he was doing as my back was facing him and the camera...and we had to walk till the director says the famous "CUT!".

And was done....the scene was a wrap. And the director, crew and everyone clapped.

We then went back to the canteen/ holding place to await for our next scene.

And it was quite a wait...whilst they moved the equipment, the props, position the lights etc. I think it was at least about 45 minutes to an hour. It truely is a waiting profession.

By then, Jang Hyuk had changed into a pair of green pants and ..... a different top. Strange, I can't seemed to remember the colour of his top but it was definitely a t-shirt. why do I keep noticing his pants? And in case you people are thinking of anything naughty...I wasn't being naughty at all.. Really!

The next scene was where we left off in the last scene. So Urs and I had to start off where we had stopped in the previous scene... and then walk into a kopitiam to sit down and eat. Unfortunately, it was no 'Coffee Prince Shop No 1' cafe. There's no nice smelling coffee nor delicious waffle being served by handsome, cute guys. Just sour smelling, hard cold paus served by an elderly uncle in the de rigeur kopitiam wear- white singlet, three quarter pants and slippers. Sigh... But the kopitiam uncle very nice. I like him. Actually I like all the uncle extras. They are very funny. ^^

This time Fann Wong was involved in this scene. This is the first time I've seen her in real life and she is really quite very fair...and thin. Not skinny but just thin. Yet on the TV screen, she doesn't look skinny at all. No wonder all these artistes have to be so careful about what they eat and are constantly watching out for their weight. If she's thin and looks ok on screen, then I probably will end up looking like a fat executive in the movie. Luckily can only see my fat back.

I couldn't see what was happenning as my back was towards the camera and I couldn't see what she was doing.

That means I couldn't see what Jang Hyuk was doing too. WAILS!

Again, it took a few takes before the director was satisfied.

Actually, I think the filming wasn't that bad. There were fewer retakes than I imagined it woud take. Still, these 2 short scenes that will probably be no more than 5 to 7 minutes in the movie took more than 3 hours to be done.

I really take my hat off people who worked behind the scene in the entertainment world.

And the artistes as well.

So, if they don't cut out the earlier scene (where Jang Hyuk and I passed each other on the street) in the final version, then my back and my fat butt will be seen by millions of people around the world when it shows on the big screen next year.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

We were given this voucher as Kimage Hair Studio was the providing the services. Am I going to use it? Of course not! As another extra said, must keep for souvenir as it's proof that we were actually involved in the movie. (See the words under reference on the voucher).

I don't know if I'm going to be called again as the extras are called randomly, depending on the scene though some of them have been involved in a few scenes the past week.

K music in Singapore:
Hye Sung's latest album is really not bad at all. This is the 2nd song from his album that I'm playing on my blog. In fact, I would say it's good and my friend, who just came back from his recent concerts in Korea, said the concerts were fantastic with lots of guests artistes...including Jun Jin! Boohoohoo! I want to see Jun Jin. Someone had captured their performance and put it up on youtube here. Hilarious! Thanks Shermiane!

Li Yi of Yes93.3 will be playing Hye Sung's album tonight on her 'J/K Pop show'. If you want to listen to more of it, you can tune in to the station at 9.55pm tonight (19/08/07). Or go onto their internet site to listen here

Next post- Dancing with Jason Scott Lee in Singapore. ^^


Mawee said...

wow!!! that's so great!!! :D

tiffany said...

Hi Mawee

Yeah... it was great fun. ^^

Anonymous said...

Really enjoyed reading your encounter with Jang Hyuk. Wish I could be there too...

tiffany said...

Hi there!

It was great being able to see him so close but I haven't had the chance to see much of him or that closely. At least I didn't notice that his eyes are brown according to Viviene. haha!

Hopefully I will have another chance to be an extra on the movie where I can do more observation. ^^

Anonymous said...

Hi Tiffany,

Thank you for sharing your valuable experience as an extra. I found it very intersting, although I don't know who Jang Hyuk is. I can't wait to see the movie!

I have once considered applying for an extra of "Japanese Hotelier", but missed the chance. Seemes to be worth doing just to understand how the drama or movie making goes. I wish I had a chance with a drama/movie of wuri Yong Joon.

cloud nine

tiffany said...

Hi cloud nine

I didn't know you visit my blog too...I'm so happy. ^^

Well, the other night, I was teasing Viv, an extra on the set, who's a big fan of Jang Hyuk. She was of course in 'cloud nine' to be so near him. Haha!

Then she said, just wait till it's my turn to be in BYJ's movie and she'll return the teasing a 100 times. I told her...this is not likely to happen at all...maybe one in a thousand, million, billion chance. I would love to be in the same drama/ movie as BYJ.

Imagine walking past him on the 'street'. I don't think I can just 'walk past him' as I did on with Jang Hyuk. I'll probably be grabbing him or simply get rooted on the spot.


Btw, Jang Hyuk was in Successful Story of Bright Girl 9with Jang Na Ra), Please Teach Me English (with Lee Na Young- now BOF artiste) and Wind struck (with Jeong Ji Hyun)