She was warned that she should not touch them.
As bizarre as it sounds, it turns out that fans of Super Junior are so protective of their idols that 29-year-old Chen was advised to ‘be careful and not to get too close to the guys’, she told a media conference here on Friday. Lee and Choi, who were in town for a Super Junior concert on Saturday and Sunday, also attended.
The Taiwanese drama Skip Beat!, which airs on E City every Sunday, sees Chen play Gong Xi, a girl who enters showbiz to exact revenge on her childhood friend and love interest, Bu Po Shang (played by Lee), who has forsaken her after becoming a celebrity.
The warning about not touching the Super Junior hunks, both 25, proved impossible to observe, as Chen had a kissing scene with Choi.
It was a big deal for her – she felt compelled to skip a whole day’s worth of meals to prepare for the smooch, revealing: ‘We were filming in a location where you couldn’t brush your teeth and I didn’t want to leave a bad impression.’
This seemed surprising from an actress who previously worked with one of Taiwan’s current ‘It’ boys, Mark Chao, in the award-winning police drama Black & White (2009).
But during filming, Chen came to realize that acting opposite the two popular singers was not as daunting as it seemed – ‘I’ve yet to receive any death threats,’ she said laughing – because their fans came to love her as well.
At this point in the conference, Choi quipped in Korean and translated into Mandarin: ‘Now, fans are the ones telling us to be nicer to Ivy.’
Lee then shrugged his shoulders helplessly, accepted the ‘accusation’ with a smile and impressed everyone in the room by replying in Mandarin: ‘Yes, I’m very playful.’
The camaraderie among the three seemed effortless, and Chen held her own next to her younger counterparts. That is, except when she revealed the fangirl inside and gushed: ‘After listening to their albums and attending their concert, I wondered to myself, how could they be so cool?’
It was a good thing she became a fan only after the drama. ‘If I felt like this during the filming, I would be too star-struck to continue acting,’ she said. Still, she stayed professional enough to give them the evil eye when they forgot their lines.
Indeed, Choi confessed to being worried about memorizing the huge chunks of dialogue, which were delivered in Korean but were dubbed over in Mandarin, and mimicked the stern expression that Chen would give him whenever he forgot his lines.
He added: ‘Whenever that happened, she would throw me dagger looks, and thanks to that, I’d always remember my lines.’
With two Super Junior members acting in the same drama about a love triangle, some could expect that it might spark real-life rivalry between Lee and Choi, but the latter immediately shot down that notion.
He said: ‘In Super Junior, we look out for one another no matter what, so I know Lee will do well and we don’t have to worry about each other.’
The relationship between the two is so good that Lee felt comfortable telling the press that he was not always that close to Choi in the past because Choi ‘did not give him a good first impression’.
Lee jokingly added: ‘We’re so close now that in future, if I’ve financial problems, Si Won will come to my rescue.’
Choi laughed and said: ‘Because we’re of the same age, Dong Hae will be the first person I tell my problems to. If I had to tell you all the secrets between just the two of us, it would take me three days and three nights to do so.’