iQiyi has held a global press conference for its upcoming Original K-series Jirisan on 13th October as the series sets to premiere globally on 23 October 2021 on iQiyi. The event saw the appearance by writer Kim Eun-hee, director of photography Choi Sang-mook, together with stars Gianna Jun, Ju Ji-hoon, Oh Jung-se and Cho Han-Cheul.
The event kickstarts with a sneak preview of Jirisan, which Jirisan peak in all its glory over the four seasons. Jun, Ju and their fellow actors star as national park rangers who fearlessly face typhoons, fires, floods, and other untold dangers in their search and rescue missions. The series not only offers mysteries and suspense, but also heartwarming stories that viewers can look forward to.
During the event, Gianna Jun and Ju Ji-hoon has spoken about their first ever collaboration where Gianna said, “It was a very good partnership, we were at ease.” He added: “I’ve been a fan of Gianna Jun ‘since young’. Her charm has left me speechless and she has always been a role model for me. During our collaboration, she was always trying to feed me, so I am very thankful to her.”
Ju Ji-hoon has shared his thoughts on his character, and revealed how he went about bringing the role to life. Prior to production, he had discussions with writer Kim and listened to her analysis of his role. He revealed that he enjoyed climbing from a young age and expressed enthusiasm to climb Jirisan in the future. Ju shared that it took a lot of energy to shoot this series. This was especially for scenes where he had to ascend the peak and keep his legs sturdy. Saying that the shoot was about three to four times more demanding than shooting on even ground, he quipped, “That’s why I run to keep fit.”
Co-star Sung Dong-il also mentioned in a previous interview that Oh Jung-se can bring on the laughs, while Jun was guilty of some ‘NG’ scenes. Gianna shared, “Actually he just looks funny. There are many scenes that we had to shoot together and they were all serious ones, but he just made us laugh. And before we burst out laughing the director would shout ‘Cut!’.” Oh Jung-se meanwhile said that Jun was very into her character and shared an anecdote about being on set together. “There was once Gianna Jun wanted to hit my head, but she burst into laughter before she could do it. After laughing though, she still did hit my head.” In embarrassment, Jun replied, “I wanted to be serious, but could not stop myself from laughing, I am really sorry.”
Speaking of her role, Jun said “Actually, I didn’t accept the role because I wished to play a strong woman, females today are stronger in character. I never thought I would play a park ranger, to me this is a brand-new experience.” Gianna Jun also felt that the filming process was not too tough. “I didn’t feel exceptionally tired or cold, I was very happy throughout the filming process. As I prepared well in mountaineering gear, there were not many difficulties,” she said, adding that the production process had improved her physical health. Screenwriter Kim also praised Jun for growing from strength to strength, just like her iconic character in the box office hit film, My Sassy Girl. Jun replied: “Thank you to everyone for your praises, I think there are some humorous parts in there.”
Cho Han-cheul has played numerous comedic roles that have brightened up many shows. In Jirisan, he will once again inject humour to lighten up the series with his role as a Haidong Branch park ranger alongside his teammates Sharing his experience of being on set, Cho talked about the joys and challenges of filming in nature, and revealed that he had climbed the mountain at the age of 20 in an attempt to quit smoking. He has ascended the peak twice since then. Laughing about his current age, Cho said that the production took a toll on him physically. Oh Jung-se joked, “I’m younger than Cho Han-cheul!” Oh believed that the mountain enables him to feel and embrace nature’s charm. “This warmth is similar to a parents’ embrace and that will be felt by viewers,” he said.
Jirisan follows a team of national park rangers who are responsible for search and rescue efforts on Jirisan. You can catch Jirisan exclusively simulcast with Korea on 23rd October on the iQiyi International app and iQ.com worldwide.