Original article by avexlive.jp (with photos): page 1 & page 2 Notes written (with parentheses) are from the article and notes written [italicized in brackets] are from myself. Enjoy the interview!
【They’ve prepared themselves to keep you all warm. Pay attention to the voices and expressions that the members’ filled with their emotions】
― Your new single, “Distance…”, is now on sale.
★Hoon★ This time we’ve prepared a ballad track to warm up all of the fans. The lyrics also generally have a deep meaning included in them. We want you to listen to how we expressed that loneliness and sadness in our voices.
― I’m curious about the “…” part that is stuck onto the end of the title.
★Dongho★ This title expressed the separation between people though the word Distance. That separation is even further expressed with the “…” part.
★Soohyun★ It gives the impression that “something more” is added to those feelings of sadness.
― The music video of this song. What’s the highlight of it?
★Soohyun★ The members’ facial expressions that are full of their emotions. Up until now we’ve recorded many music videos but, this is our first time to put so much effort into making sorrowful expressions like this.
★Hoon★ Also, it was also our first time to have such a relaxed recording session. That’s because, we always have a choreography to dance to so the video recording is really difficult. But if it’s too relaxed like this time, on the other hand we will feel the need to start moving our bodies (laughs). It was difficult to hold back that feeling.
★Kevin★ To not dance and stay there motionlessly is boring, so boring (smiles).
― In that song, the two people choose to separate for the sake of their dream, correct? If you were in that situation, what do you think you would tell your girlfriend when you bring up the topic of separation to her?
― What if she replies “I won’t wait”?
★Dongho★ I’ll say, “Well, I guess our we weren’t destined to be together”.
★Other members★ Ooooh!!
― Then, if you were planning to keep a good relationship with her even after being separated, what kind of efforts would you make?
★Dongho★ I’ll use the hightech features of a cellphone and talk to her though videos. Lately we can call others for free thought applications so it’s really convenient (laughs)
★Eli★ If we’re able to find even a little time for each other, we’ll meet up.
★Soohyun★ I’ll write “letters”. Lately I’ve only been using my cellphone or e-mail but, after all I believe that our emotions are surely transmitted though handwriting. Different emotions can appear out of that.
★Kiseop★ I’ll send photos. I’ll take photos and videos of what I’m doing at the moment.
★Hoon★ I’ll tell her all of my plans every single day.
★Other members★ Woaaaah!!
★Hoon★ If I don’t do at least that much, I think that she’ll feel disappointed so, I’ll put in every single bit of my effort in so that she won’t feel that way.
― Right now, U-KISS has an actual Distance from AJ. What kind of efforts do you make to shorten that distance with AJ?
★Soohyun★ We use an application where we can chat, we created a room where only U-KISS can talk to each other. In there we frequently chat and send photos to each other so, we don’t feel the separation that much.
― By the way, is AJ doing well?
★Soohyun★ To the point that he’s doing too well (laughs). When he did activities with U-KISS, we were all together but, isn’t he alone right now? I feel that he’s sort of lonely since none of the members are with him.
― Then, was there another moment that you felt that you were separated from AJ?
★Kiseop★ When we’re on stage and AJ’s place is empty, I think “someone’s missing”.
★Kevin★ Ah! The laundry load has decreased by one person (The members live together even now).
― For this single, to keep it short, when purchasing all 4 versions, there is a special offshot DVD that’s given. On there, we can see the “U-KISS Couple Talk”. First of all, how did you decide these couples?
★Soohyun★ We teamed up according to the collaborations we did at the Budokan Live, and then each pair chose their team name together.
★Hoon★ We (Hoon & Kevin) are “Hana Hana Team” [Flower Flower Team]. We sang a cover of “Yuki no Hana” [literally “Snow Flower”, a song by Nakashima Mika] at the Budokan Live, didn’t we?
★Kevin★ Also, the both of us are U-KISS’ “flowers” [This particular kanji for “Hana” has many meanings, such as “flower”, “blossom”, “beauty”, etc.] so we chose this name.
★Dongho★ We (Dongho & Eli) are always eating. Always…….
★Eli★ We’re always hungry. So we’re “Pekopeko Team” [In Japanese it’s “Onaka pekopeko”, so, “Hungry Hungry Team”].
★Kevin★ Cute? (smiles).
★Soohyun & Kiseop★ We’re Soohyun, Kiseop “Suki (Soohyun points to Kiseop) Suki (Kiseop points to Soohyun) Daisuki Team [“Suki Suki Daisuki” literally means “Like Like Love”, but it’s also a word play with their names, SooKi = Suki]”!! (smiles)
★Soohyun★ …… It’s not that funny?
★Hoon★ Nope. Just a little (everyone laughs).
【2012, U-KISS & members’ big news! Their new project that’ll be published at the start of the year is……!?】
― Well then, 2012 will come to a close soon so, in U-KISS’ 2012, what was your biggest piece of news.
★Hoon★ I believe that our biggest news was that we already did Nippon Budokan.
― Then, if it’s big news from each of you?
★Hoon★ I’ve started composing music. U-KISS is a dance group but, I love ballad songs so I’m writing those.
★Kevin★ A Japanese fortuneteller chose me as the male K-POP artist that would have the biggest break in 2012. I was surprised when I saw that article (smiles).
★Dongho★ My big news is that my hair grew a lot. I look like a girl now (laughs).
★Eli★ It’s something recently but, when we were promoting in Korea, we went to the Han River. Then, there was a girl that collapsed and I helped transport her all the way to the hospital.
★Kiseop★ It’s from when we performed at Budokan, I thought about everything by myself, from the making of my solo song to the costumes, up to even the production.
★Soohyun★ I’ve been chosen to play the main character of a musical that will start soon. I have a lot of anxiety~ (strained laugh). That’s because there’s acting parts. I’m totally fine for the singing though.
― Next year’s U-KISS will have the Budokan Live DVD released on January 1st, and right after that a new single is on the way.
★Hoon★ Yes. It’s a song called “ALONE”, and will be the theme song for the drama called “Shotenin Michiru no Mi no Uebanashi [The Life Story of Bookseller Michiru]” (NHK Production).
★Kevin★ That’s why, we’re looking forward to it.
― “Distance…” was a soft ballad so “ALONE” is of course of the opposite style?
★Soohyun★ That’s correct. This song is powerful!
★Kevin★ It’s really powerful!
★Soohyun★ The dance is so hard to the point that out bodies hurt.
★Dongho★ We felt like we would die.
★Kevin★ We had the music video filming in Korea a little while ago though. Our style and hair are also really wild.
★Soohyun★ Please also look forward to that patiently.
― I thought this while looking at the Budokan DVD but, U-KISS look really manly and wild when dancing to dance tunes that when you sing ballads like “Distance…”, you seem like a different group.
★Kevin★ There’s a gap.
★Soohyun★ But, both sides are U-KISS. This time we’re showing both of those sides.
★Hoon★ That’s because we each have our own individual singing voices.
★Soohyun★ We use that because we want to show our different appearances. Cute, sexy, sweet…… We want to do everything. That’s U-KISS.
― Then lastly, please tell us U-KISS’ aim for next year
★Soohyun★ We want to do an Arena-class nation wide tour. And then, we’ll work harder and harder to study Japanese and appear in many different places. Movies, dramas, variety shows, music shows…… We want to show you the many efforts U-KISS will make when going through different settings.
‘3 Peas in A Pod’, Michelle Chong’s Sophomore S$1.7million Movie, will star Calvin Chen of Fahrenheit and K-pop Star Alexander as Male Leads
Two days ago, Michelle Chong revealed the two male leads of her latest project to be Calvin Chen of Fahrenheit and Alexander, a former member of K-pop boyband U-Kiss. However, she declines to disclose how much the stars cost her, only willing to reveal that “Inviting them cost about 6 digit figures of our budget.”
Interested in Their Fluency in English
‘3 Peas in a Pod’ will tell the story of 3 Asian students in Australia, so all three actors have to be able to speak fluent English.
Calvin Chen’s time as a university student in Canada was deemed as one of the reasons for his suitability as one of the male leads, “I wanted a Taiwanese star who can speak English, but he can’t have a western accent. This was a challenge because most of them are ABCs (American born Chinese). Calvin speaks very good English and he doesn’t have an American accent so it was perfect!”
Calvin’s character comes from a poor background. He is gentle and quiet, a top student in school, and received a scholarship to study overseas. He is a filial son and takes part time jobs to support himself. Michelle thinks that Calvin's looks suits this character.
They met in September when Michelle attended the “South East Asia Movie Festival” In Taiwan. She has nothing but praises for him, “Positive, honest, and full of ideas.”
Calvin is definitely no newcomer in idol dramas, but this will be his very first role in a movie. Said Michelle, “This is very good, he’s just like a piece of pure jade that hasn’t been carved, there are so many possibilities on how to mold him.”
When told that Fahrenheit is no longer as popular as they used to be, Michelle said with ultimate confidence, “I’m not worried! I invited Calvin Chen, not Fahrenheit.”
Requesting Alexander to Work Out
Earlier this year, Michelle asked her followers on Twitter to recommend K-pop stars who can speak fluent English. The fans gave her names such as Alexander, Jay Park, Kevin from U-Kiss, etc. Michelle eventually decided to cast Alexander.
Alexander, who studied in California, is part Korean, Chinese and Portuguese. He can speak 7 different languages, including English, Cantonese, Korean, and Mandarin.
Said Michelle, “Even just by Alexander’s appearance, he’s already very suitable for this role of a 'wealthy family's son'.” However, Michelle also expressed her wish for Alexander to work out, so as to have a slightly bigger build, “Because I want a 'sunshine boy' and not a 'pretty boy'.”
Michelle has heard that K-pop stars are supposedly difficult to handle and that Korean kimchi would have to be served with every meal, which worried her, thinking about where and how she would have to look for kimchi when they begin filming in Australia. Fortunately, from what she has heard, Alexander has lived in various different countries hence his ability to adapt well, and he’s also not picky when it comes to food.
Cameos for the Movie Fans
Michelle also invites the very popular Indonesian artist, Agnes Monica, to do a cameo in the film and to sing the main theme song for the movie. Because her debut film 'Already Famous' only screened in Singapore and Malaysia, she also expresses her hopes of ‘3 Peas in a Pod’ being able to enter more markets, including those of Taiwan, South Korea, Indonesia, and Australia.
As for whether she herself will make an appearance in the movie, she smiled and said, “Of course it has to be done! It may even be more than one character, I could be a waitress and also a college professor.”
Of course, she wouldn't leave out Pornsak and Lee Teng, the stars of her own company, right? Michelle laughed, saying that Lee Teng has a prior engagement and wouldn't be able to participate, although Pornsak has been bugging her about it.
“He has been asking me to give him a role, and even told me he has applied for leave from work so he could go to Australia with me.”
Open Casting for Female Lead
As for the female lead in the film, an audition will take place in Singapore on the 19th & 20th of January 2013 to find her, adding to the excitement of the film which will feature a fresh new face from Singapore.
The movie will be filmed 90% in Australia's Melbourne and Adelaide, and production is expected to begin in March 2013. The film is also scheduled to be released in the fourth quarter of next year.
3 Peas in a Pod tells the story of three university friends from Taiwan, Korea and Singapore who go on a road trip that changes their lives forever.