Fans of Kim Bum rejoiced when they learned that the Korean actor had come to the Philippines. He arrived last Wednesday, September 30, and his flight back to Korea is scheduled for today, October 4. The actor became popular for his character named Yi Jeong in Boys Over Flowers, which was recently aired on ABS-CBN.
Kim arrived to shoot a TV commercial with Kapamilya actress Maja Salvador, who will celebrate her birthday on October 5. The two stars of the RC Cola ad met with the press yesterday, October 3, at the ELJ Building in Quezon City.
According to insiders, the 20-year-old actor was very impressed with his fellow endorser and even compared her to Hollywood actress Catherine Zeta-Jones. In the presscon, Kim confirmed this through his interpreter.
"Yes, that is what I said. I even told her, you look like Catherine Zeta-Jones. That is what he thought from the very beginning and aside from that, she has a lot more charm in her and beauty."
During the presscon, the Boys Over Flowers star was asked to pick a flower that would describe the beauty of the Filipina actress. After thinking it over, he answered, "Way too beautiful just to describe it as a flower. [She is] beyond the beauty of a flower."
Through the female interpreter, he then narrated some details about their taping for the commercial. "It was a really hectic and tight schedule and her [Maja's] call time was at 5 a.m. She stayed there for about 24 hours and she never frowned... she keeps smiling and keep everyone so happy. She was so energized. I love this girl!"
GUWAPO AND MAGANDA. Maja recalled how Kim lifted up her spirits when they were shooting scenes in the wee hours of the morning. "Nakakatuwa siya kasi lagi siyang nagtatanong sa akin, nung last day ng shoot namin, tinanong niya ako, 'Are you tired?' Sabi ko, 'Yes,' kasi nga 5 a.m. pa yung call time ko. Sabi niya, 'But you're still maganda.'"
Then the Kapamilya star turned to Kim and asked him directly, "Am I maganda?"
"Always maganda," said Kim with a smile.
Maja then returned the compliment by saying, "Siyempre, guwapo. You know what's guwapo, right?"
The Boys Over Flowers actor smiled broadly and bowed before saying, "Salamat."
What does Maja like about her fellow endorser? "Sobrang like ko kapag nag-i-smile siya. One smile please." To this request, Kim gamely obliged.
Is he open to working again with Maja in the future?
"He'll be very honored if he gets that opportunity," said the female interpreter. "And he'll be very excited coz he had a great, blessed time while doing the shooting. Although it's not only work; he's willing to come back and experience more of the Philippines."
Before ending the interview, Kim said that he would love to know more about Filipinos and the Philippines. In fact, his translator pointed out, "He's really in love with the Philippines. He just arrived here and he was stuck in a hotel and more than 12 hours of shooting [for the TVC]. But he was touched by the people. In no time, he will be coming back whether for work or for a personal visit, I will definitely be coming back."
He also entertained the press with the Tagalog words that he learned during his stay here. Kim enumerated, "Payong, salamat po, palakpak [motions clapping hands]."
Kim mentioned that he is single right now. What are the qualities that he is looking for in a girl? "They should share a lot in common but he sees more of the soul."
MESSAGE TO ONDOY VICTIMS. Before Kim arrived in the country last Wednesday, did he hear about the destruction brought about by typhoon Ondoy (international codename: Ketsana)? Did he have fears for his safety?
"He has heard about what has happened to the Philippines, the typhoon Ondoy. But people have welcomed him so much and he's so grateful for that. Before he fears of the typhoon for himself, he first considered how to carry himself. But still, people are welcoming him with their whole hearts so he's relieved. He feels so sorry for the victims," replied the interpreter.
What is his message to his fans who became victims of the typhoon?
"He says that he felt very sorry and he knew it was a very sensitive topic. Please do not lose hopes and dreams. As an actor, I'll do my role. I'll keep on doing what I'm doing to give them smiles and get them back on track. God bless them all. In no time, I would love to go back to the Philippines."
Fans of Kim Bum can see his taped interview on the October 5 episode of ABS-CBN's morning show Ruffa and Ai.
He will topbill the Asianovela Dream, which is about a rebellious teenager who acquires discipline when he trains to become a boxer and martial arts expert. It will be aired soon on ABS-CBN.
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