[CELEB] Actor Nam Ji-hyun is no 'little woman' in her latest role
Actor Nam Ji-hyun, who is well-known for the softer sides she shows on screen, is portraying a different type of character full of determination in her role as reporter Oh In-kyung in tvN drama series “Little Women.”
The series, which was inspired by the classic novel by American author Louisa May Alcott, centers around three sisters, unlike the book with features four. Each sister has their own unique characteristics and talents. They face off against one of the most powerful families in the country despite their own humble background.
The series attracted public interest prior to airing due to the casting of Kim Go-eun, Park Ji-hu and Nam, who portray the three sisters.
Produced by Studio Dragon, screenwriter Jung Seo-kyung known for her work with auteur Park Chan-wook on films “Sympathy for Lady Vengeance” (2005), “Thirst” (2009), “The Handmaiden” (2016) and his latest “Decision to Leave” (2022), and director Kim Hee-won known for her global hits such as “The Crowned Clown” (2019), “Crash Landing on You” (2019-20) and “Vincenzo” (2021) on tvN, collaborated for the first time on the series.
TvN’s interpretation of “Little Women” is a mystery thriller as the three sisters become intertwined in the case of a missing slush fund of 70 billion won ($50.6 million) and the people involved in the case who keep mysteriously dying.
Among the three, Nam portrays the second sister In-kyung — a reporter at a local broadcaster who begins to dig through cases related to an attorney-turned-popular politician Park Jae-sang, portrayed by Um Ki-joon.
The three sisters have different attitudes toward their less-than-ideal financial situation.The eldest, believes that money is the most vital aspect of their lives and the means to protect her family. In-kyung, on the other hand, believes in her own set of values. The youngest, despite her natural talent in art, struggles with financial difficulties as she goes to a prestigious — so naturally expensive — art high school.
“In-kyung is very energetic,” Nam said at an online press event on Aug. 29. “When she sets her sights on a target, she never loses focus. Her appeal lies in her multifaceted characteristics — she’s composed, but she’s also very passionate.
“For my past roles, most of them [had me depict] lovely and pure characters,” Nam said. “Compared to them, In-kyung has more energy. I discussed the role a lot with writer Jung — she [In-kyung] had to be the one who is ready to jump into action whenever it’s time.”
To accurately portray In-kyung as a reporter, Nam revealed that she worked with a real reporter.
“I studied and asked a reporter that I consulted lots of questions,” she said. “I hope she likes it.”
The show, which began airing on Sept. 3 and has aired four episodes so far, has set an impressive viewership rating of 7.3 percent.
Nam started her acting career as a child and is best known for her roles in “Queen Seondeok” (2009) on MBC, “Will It Snow for Christmas?” (2009) on SBS and “What Happens to my Family?” (2014-15) on KBS2.
Her first lead role as an adult came with “Shopaholic Louis” (2016) on MBC in which she starred alongside Seo In-guk. The series is a romantic comedy revolving around a character named Louis, portrayed by Seo who is the sole heir of a chaebol group who one day loses his memory and meets Bok-shil, portrayed by Nam, an innocent country girl.
The actor continues to be handpicked for romance stories due to her unique charms and her chemistry with male leads, such as the television series “Suspicious Partner” (2017) on SBS and “100 Days My Prince” (2018) on tvN.
In “Suspicious Partner,” her character of Bong-hee becomes romantically involved with ingenious prosecutor Ji-wook, portrayed by Ji Chang-wook. The role marked Nam’s successful transition from a child actor to an adult.
The setting of “100 Days My Prince” (2018) is the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910). The series centers on 100 days of a journey of a crown prince named Lee Yul, portrayed by singer and actor Doh Kyung-soo, who loses his memory in an accident and ends up living as a commoner. During those 100 days, the prince reunites with his childhood love Hong-shim, portrayed by Nam. The series still remains one of the highest-rated Korean drama series for a cable television.
Nam has taken a step away from romantic roles in recent years. In 2020, she starred in the mystery thriller “365: Repeat the Year” aired on MBC, where she portrays one of 10 chosen people who are given the ability to go back in time. The series is based on the 2004 Japanese novel “Repeat” by Kurumi Inui.
Last year, she starred in the eight-episode tvN drama series “The Witch’s Diner,” where she portrays Jeong-jin, who strikes a deal with a witch named Hee-ra, portrayed by Song Ji-hyo, who makes people’s wishes come true in exchange for the most precious things in their lives. Jeong-jin lets Hee-ra use her mother’s bankrupted restaurant and works as a restaurant employee to get revenge against her neighbor who scammed her mother.
“Little Women” airs on tvN every Saturday and Sunday. The series is also available to stream on Tving and Netflix.
Date of Birth: Sept. 17, 1995
Zodiac sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bupyeong District, Incheon
Debut: February 2004 through MBC television series “Say You Love Me”
Agency: Management SOOP
Actor Nam Ji-hyun debuted at the age of eight in February 2004 through MBC television series “Say You Love Me” and is remembered for her role portraying the young Queen Seondeok in “Queen Seondeok” (2009) on MBC. After she became an adult, she starred in hit series such as “Suspicious Partner” (2017) on SBS and “100 Days My Prince” (2018) on tvN. She is currently starring in another hit tvN drama series “Little Women,” loosely based on the American novel of the same title by Louisa May Alcott.
This information was confirmed by Management SOOP on Sept. 6, 2022.
BY LEE JAE-LIM [email@example.com]