Kiko Mizuhara – Interview for HIGH CUT KOREA
Disclaimer: The original article was published in High Cut Korea Magazine Vol. 159 that has been translated by Team Mizuhara. The translator have tried not to defer/lose the original meaning of anything in this interview. Let us know for possible inaccuracies. Please credit if reposting elsewhere. Thank you.
The angles and degrees about Mizuhara Kiko.
You may have heard of this Japanese model from her unconfirmed relationship with Big Bang’s G-Dragon, through certain unpleasant rumours, or just through word of mouth.
What kind of questions will we pose to this unfamiliar exotic lady?
We had some worries in the days leading up to our departure to Tokyo to met her. However, none of the negative stereotypes about her arised when we actually met her in person.
At first, we were mesmerized by her Western-looking appearance, and were captivated by how she shyly and softly said “Thank You” in Korean and her friendly demeanour.
In the outskirts of gentle Tokyo, this is the interview with Kiko.
How do you spend your time recently?
After finishing promotional activities for the movie <Attack on Titan>, I’ve had a lot of magazine photoshoots. I was crazily busy in the summer with promotions, but I’m less busy nowadays. I’ve just been meeting up with friends, eating together and shopping together.
We were surprised to see you in person. It’s different from the Kiko that people picture in their minds; instead the real Kiko is gentle and cute. It seems like the misunderstandings directed at you are only false accusations.
I think this preconception may have arised because of the persona I undertake in photos and photoshoots. Afterall, I too, have preconceptions on other people. I think the way people look at me is something that cannot be controlled. Recently, I’ve been doing not only modelling activities but I’ve also been exposed to a variety of fields and have been stretching my limits. Through these kind of activities, you may get to know me better.
What kind of person is the real Kiko like? To be honest, before meeting you, we thought you would be a scary person.
I may seem like a person of little words and have a chic, cool image, but I’m actually a very ordinary girl, just like my same-aged peers. I like things that are feminine and cute. I hope that interviews like these may allow my image to be more widely spread-out.
We heard that you came to Korea last August to view the Chanel collection. Did you come back to Korea after that?
I actually had no opportunity to come back after August. Before that, I went to Korea really often. I’ve lots of friends in Korea and I like Korean food more than anything. I do want to go back. I heard that <Attack on Titan> premiered in Korea around October so I wish we did promotions there as well. Nevertheless, I think I would go back once within this year?
You go to Itaewon really often when you visit Korea. We’re curious how people like you have fun and hang out in Itaewon.
It’s a place I got to know from a friend who brought me there. The transgender bar in Itaewon is really fun and interesting so I go often. When I first went, there weren’t a lot of people but recently it’s difficult to get a seat if you go on a weekend. I go to the club too. Korea’s nightlife is really fun (laughs) I like how people dance with power. Things like that are fun so everyone should definitely go to Itaewon. I also eat Budae Jjigae and Samgyeopsal often when I go there.
You like Budae Jjigae and Samgyeopsal?
I like all kinds of Korean food. Everything!
We heard you’re good at Korean. What is most difficult for you?
(with fluent Korean pronunciation) Difficult?
Are you good at formal speech?
I haven’t really used much of formal speech (laughs) cause I’ve had just brief and rough conversations. I learnt Hangeul (Korean alphabet) in 3 days by self-studying.
You’ve been a model for about 10 years, a 6 year difference from your time as an actress. Between being an actress and a model, which side is more Kiko-style?
I started acting only recently. As I follow the roles assigned to me in dramas or movies, my outlook on the world changes. So I’m not really used to it. I don’t think I’ll ever get used to being an actress. I still have many things that I wish to challenge. I’m less nervous modelling since I’ve gotten used to it. I’m not sure what’s more Kiko-style, but I think it’s right to say that I’m more comfortable when I model.
As a model, you’ve always been at the top. Your debut as an actress was a masterpiece as well. We know that you debuted through the movie of Murakami Haruki’s book <Norwegian Wood>. There must have been a lot of pressure.
At first, there was nothing but pressure. It was so difficult to express the lines of the script. At the same time, I was quite young so there were many portions which I couldn’t understand. I was really frightened and frustrated during the filming. I was embarrassed too.
Among all the works that you’ve done until now, which one do you like the most? Be it pictorials, movies or dramas.
There’s really a lot. The most special moment was working with photographer Araki Nobuyoshi. He’s a world-famous photographer who’s really talented. Working with him allowed me to enter his world, which felt like lying on a really soft bed. Working together brought out the best possible results.
Be it as a model or as an actress, you’re a person with lots of diversity. What kind of image do you wish the future Kiko will be like? Do you have a role model?
Chloë Sevigny. She’s a fashion icon, as well a person who expresses her honest personal style. Although she may not be the prettiest, I like that she is able to expresses herself as the way she really is.
You mentioned in an interview previously that in order to not get too skinny, you eat a lot.
I think it’s just a constitution. I was born with such a physique whereby I don’t gain weight easily. Even if I eat a lot, I can’t put on weight. And if I don’t eat, I lose it really quickly. If I was any skinnier than I am now, it wouldn’t look good so I’ve been working hard to really eat whenever I can.
Wow, I’m so envious. I don’t like you for that! (laughs)
I started exercising regularly 2 years ago. It’s not pretty to be too overly gaunt so I have to know how to draw the line for a healthy body.
In that case, what do you do in your free time? Exercise?
If my break is long enough, I like going for holidays. If it isn’t that long, I clean my house and hang out with my friends. I like hanging out with my younger sister too.
What is one thing you’ve been loving recently?
You seem to pay attention to working out and exercising.
It’s not a bad thing. Kids can ride kickboards too. (laughs)
In that case, it seems like you’ll be good at shooting action movies.
I did a lot of difficult action acting in <Attack on Titan>. There wasn’t any problem. I tried different scenes while attached to a wire.
I’m sure you know that you are popular in Korea as well. It seems like you’ll be fine doing activities in Korea too.
I really want to do it. Afterall, I have Korean blood and I am half Korean. I’m good at Korean too. I want to work harder and do activities in Korea in the future. Entertainment is a lot stronger in Korea. I want to not be constrained to certain genres only. It’ll be nice if anyone could offer some work for me. (in Korean) Please. (laughs)
In which area do you wish to venture in?
Anything! Dramas, movies, or if you would like me to go outdoors I’ll like to do it. Music video is an area where I have the most confidence in. I’d like to get some work in that field. (laughs)