Choi Woo-shik transforms into cop who plays by the rules in 'The Policeman's Lineage' - Korea Times
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Choi Woo-shik transforms into cop who plays by the rules in 'The Policeman's Lineage'

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Actors Cho Jin-woong, left, and Choi Woo-shik attend the press conference for the film,
Actors Cho Jin-woong, left, and Choi Woo-shik attend the press conference for the film, "The Policeman's Lineage," in Seoul, Thursday. Courtesy of Acemaker

By Kwak Yeon-soo

Crime drama film "The Policeman's Lineage," starring Cho Jin-woong and Choi Woo-shik, involves plenty of action scenes and shows the distrust among a group of police officers, according to the cast.

The film revolves around officer Min-jae (Choi), a police officer with strict ethical beliefs, who is secretly tasked with investigating another cop, Kang-yoon (Cho), who is unrivaled in his number of arrests, but is illicitly receiving huge payoffs from an unknown source.

"I've always believed that police officers must have a strong work ethic and faith in their mission. After meeting them in real life, however, I came to think that each cop may have a different set of beliefs about what is right and wrong," director Lee Kyu-man said during an online press conference for the film, Thursday.

Continuing, he explained that there is a gray area between good (cops) and evil (villains) shown in the film. For instance, a person can do the right things for the wrong reasons, or the wrong things for the right reasons. "I wanted the characters to have a sort of seesaw experience with this film. I wanted them to keep building some tension for the finale," he said.

On playing Kang-yoon, a cop who employs any means necessary to capture criminals, Cho explained that he had to wear high-quality suits and drive expensive cars to go after powerful and super rich people who become wealthy via illicit means.

"Unlike regular cops dressed in uniform, Kang-yoon exudes a more sophisticated, classy look. I had to portray the character in all his complexity. Some days he does the right thing, and other days he doesn't," he said.

From left, actors Kwon Yul and Cho Jin-woong, director Lee Kyu-man, actors Choi Woo-shik, Park Hee-soon and Park Myung-hoon pose during the press conference for the film,
From left, actors Kwon Yul and Cho Jin-woong, director Lee Kyu-man, actors Choi Woo-shik, Park Hee-soon and Park Myung-hoon pose during the press conference for the film, "The Policeman's Lineage," in Seoul, Thursday. Courtesy of Acemaker

Actor Choi, who shot the movie during the period when "Parasite" was winning awards said that he wanted to show off his charismatic side in "The Policeman's Lineage," taking a step away from the loveable, clumsy characters that he had normally portrayed in his previous projects.

"I decided to take on the role in order to display my various facets. I loved the fact that I got to perform some strong action sequences," he said.

"And of course, Cho was the primary reason I joined the project. Actors in their 30s would die to work with him. His name was definitely on my list of actors that I really wanted to work with. It was a thrilling experience," Choi added.

Park Hee-soon, who radiated a strong charachter in the Netflix series, "My Name," revealed that he has now appeared in three movies with Choi, including "Monstrum" (2018) and "The Witch: Part 1. The Subversion."

"Choi and I never played characters who like each other, but I love him," he said with a laugh. Park had only nice things to say about Choi. "I never once doubted his talent. I mean, how could I? Choi has been to Cannes and the Oscars. It was really nice to work with him again," he said.

Park, who has played cops before, said, "In the past, I used to play the corrupt police officer. But in this one, I'm the self-righteous one who goes after them."

"The Policeman's Lineage" will hit local theaters in January 2022.


Kwak Yeon-soo yeons.kwak@koreatimes.co.kr


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