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[Herald Interview] ‘Our Season’ Kim Hae-sook wants to play mothers of all kinds

Dec. 1, 2023 - 17:26 By Kim Da-sol
Kim Hae-sook (Showbox)

Veteran actor Kim Hae-sook, mostly known for her mother role in hit projects “My Brother” (2004), “Sunflower” (2006) and “Mom” (2010), stars once again as a mother in “Our Season.”

Kim plays Bok-ja, a deceased woman who has come to visit her daughter Jin-joo (Shin Min-a) in the world of the living as part of her “vacation from heaven” led by a guide (Kang Ki-young).

While Bok-ja can see her daughter from a close distance, Jin-joo cannot hear or see Bok-ja at all. Together with her best friend Mi-jin (Hwang Bo-ra), Jin-joo, now an owner of an eatery selling homecooked food, tries to revive her mother's recipes.

Kim said a daughter like Jin-joo, who doesn’t express many feelings to her mother and quarrels with her mom over trivial things, was both like herself and her own daughter. After Bok-ja's sudden death, Jin-joo regrets everything and quits her career as a professor at a prestigious US university.

“Although I’m currently a mother myself, I still feel a sudden surge of anger and sadness when I think of my own mother. Those feelings are all included in this film. To be honest, I was also once Jin-joo when I was young,” Kim told The Korea Herald in an interview in Seoul on Nov. 29.

Sharing how her mother was very strict when Kim was young, and how that made her want to become a friend-like mother to her daughter, Kim said being a working mom juggling an acting career and family life wasn’t easy.

“(Being an actor) has inevitably put me in a situation where I am often unable to be with my child. So I’ve always felt sorry to my child. I always see myself as an unprofessional mom,” Kim added.

Kim Hae-sook (Showbox)

Kim said she still has a thirst for acting, especially taking on different kinds of mother roles in her future projects.

“My title as ‘the nation's mom’ is embarrassing for me. It’s a very glorious title, but it’s always very challenging for me to play a mother,” she said, adding that she wants to play all types of mothers out there in the world.

“Although I’m a prolific actor, I’m always looking for opportunities to do more projects. I’m still curious about future roles and how I’ll be viewed on the screen. Most recently, it came to me that I want to play a female mafia member in a noir action film,” she said, smiling.

“Our Season” hits theaters on Dec. 6.