Parasite and Leading the Best Movie of the Year

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What about your feelings on what the film is trying to say? I think a lot of people may think we are only supposed to see the Kims as being parasitic, but in reality, it is showing us that we all feed off each other in one way or another.

On the surface, the Kim family certainly looks parasitic. But really, as you said, there is a mutual interdependence between these families, and I really caught onto that as well. And that is not just between these two families, but that’s really how a large society is built; it is the makeup of our society. For instance, the Kim family, by being there, is filling the rich family’s needs. And the rich family, in its own way, is creating jobs for other people, and I think that from the director’s perspective, what he’s trying to say is, or what he is trying to shed light on, is not the parasitic aspect of the family, but rather that we must have a mutual respect for each other because we are interdependent. I really think he was trying to send a message of hope, that there is room, that there is reason to hope for reconciliation because there is this mutual need. 

Both yourself and Director Bong seem to be able to reach worldwide audiences in a way that other international filmmakers cannot. Is it noticeable to you or do you actively work on finding ways to appeal to different types of audiences?

I don’t think about it at all. Of course I would hope that my acting can resonate across borders, but that’s not my focus. My focus is really to resonate with Korean audiences that is my primary concern.

Do you have any desires to take part in more international productions?

There have been a few opportunities to do exactly that, but for me as a person, in my world view, those challenges, those ambitions have not really been a big part of me, so that is not something that I intentionally try to create.

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