May 7, 2021
Disclaimer: Article is roughly translated. It may contain inaccuracies. Please pardon any mistakes.
Na In Woo’s New World
Na In Woo completed his role as Byeong In in Mr. Queen, and started a new race as On Dal in River Where The Moon Rises. Na In Woo’s peaceful conviction in finding the best way and making a way for himself in a given environment.
Our meeting with Na In Woo, who was in the midst of filming for the drama River Where The Moon Rises, started late at night. At a time when people would be wrapping up their day and going to sleep, Na In Woo was busy sweating buckets and climbing up mountains the whole day for filming at Guri, Gyeonggi Province, before wrapping up and coming to a studio in Gangnam. Although tired from his hectic filming schedule, he greeted the staff first upon arrival and said, “If you let me know (what to do for the photoshoot), I’ll do my best” as he bowed and folded his towering height into half. With his actions, all the staff laughed, and the photoshoot started with a pleasant atmosphere.
Although he joined a new drama unexpectedly, he wasn’t fazed. “I did think that it wasn’t easy, but thanks to the director, actors, and staff, I think I got through it well. Many people helped out on set, and that became a huge driving force,” he said when asked about filming for River Where The Moon Rises. When asked about the character On Dal, which he is portraying in the media for the first time, he said as he flashed his toothy smile, “He is a bright and pure character. We often know him as ‘On Dal the Fool’, but the more I read the script, the more my heart aches because it was a life he chose due to the grave situation he’s facing. I wanted to express On Dal’s innocent, pure, and bright side. Mr. Queen’s Byeong In’s love didn’t end well, but in the next drama, my character’s love was reciprocated.”
In the drama Mr. Queen, which recorded the highest viewer rating of 17.4%, Na In Woo showed pieces of himself through brilliant action scenes, affectionate eyes, and restrained emotional acting. By vividly portraying Kim Byeong In’s unfortunate narrative and yearnings for love, the viewers were able to deeply immerse themselves in his character; therefore, Na In Woo was able to boost his presence. The smart, soft, and upright Byeong In left an impression due to Na In Woo’s fresh face, stable vocalization, and voice. The reason Kim Byeong In was able to stand his ground in the drama was Na In Woo’s faithful dedication to building his skills for a long time.
During middle school, when Na In Woo was already 180 cm tall, he was recognized by a casting director. With the so-called street casting, he started out as a trainee in JYP Entertainment. “I was 19 years old when I decided to go into acting. That’s when I started giving my best.” Starting in the movie Twenty as Dong Woo (Lee Jun Ho)’s matured younger brother, he slowly built up his skills by starring in various productions: Shine or Go Crazy, Golden Pouch, Unasked Family, Mystic Pop-up Bar, web dramas Spark, It’s Okay to be Sensitive, Yeonnam-dong Family.
From the middle school boy who vaguely wished to be an actor while watching dramas such as Rustic Period & I’m Sorry, I Love You, he waited and endured to make acting his job by studying his next scenes as an actor. “I’m usually someone who takes things slowly. I’ve come this far with the mindset I had when I first started acting. Rather than focusing on a turning point, or any opportunity, I’m just steadily walking towards my goal.”
Casting news for productions such as the movie Her Bucket List and the drama At A Distance, Spring is Green poured out this year, but he doesn’t want a short-lived excitement, nor to be shining brightly for only a moment. Only, he wants to be recognized as a professional, who maintains his career well as an actor. “When I work, I want to hear people say, ‘He’s definitely that character.’ I want to be good at acting. When people think of me, I hope they regard me as a polite young man. Since I’m also a person who lives within a society, the process of getting along well with many people is extremely fun. And that’s why I like being on set.”
There is no great highlight in his life, as he views every day as precious and happy. And today became a precious day by shooting his first magazine photoshoot. On his days off, he either plays songs such as Gary Moore’s “Still Got The Blues,” Jason Becker’s “Altitudes” on guitar, takes a deep sleep, or plays games; however, even that is meaningful happiness for him.
Faith, love, and peace, which Na In Woo picked as the three keywords that represent his life, are words that penetrate through his sincerity. “The faith between two people, the heart to love everything, and the attitude to protect the peace, are the most important to me. Although he tilted his head saying that being an actor doesn’t fit him well, an earnest explanation with the word ‘curiosity’ followed. “I’m naturally very curious. I think this job fits me well in that I persistently search for and observe something. There’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to acting, but the process of looking for that something is fun. In fact, it is what makes it difficult too.
In 2019, he changed his stage name from Na Jong Chan to ‘Na In Woo’ which means a friend-like person. “My real name (Jong Chan) means to ‘provide help to many people.’ I still feel awkward with the name ‘In Woo.’ Still, it might have been a predetermined move from the person at his current company who worked closely with him for 10 years, giving him the name ‘In Woo’, and giving us a reason to smile with his small and huge roles. Na In Woo’s existence that yields sincerity and communication as his weapon becomes a reliable necessity in this world where the most ordinary and average things become precious.