The Korea Herald


[Herald Interview] Choi Min-yeong says ‘XO, Kitty’ is turning point in his acting career

By Lee Si-jin

Published : June 12, 2023 - 14:09

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Choi Min-yeong (right) plays Dae, a high school student, in Choi Min-yeong (right) plays Dae, a high school student, in "XO, Kitty." (Netflix)

Choi Min-yeong, a rising 20-year-old actor who captivated the hearts of drama fans with his role as Back Yi-hyun in the smash hit coming-of-age series “Twenty Five, Twenty One” (2022), has recently made a splash with the American Netflix original “XO, Kitty.”

While Choi treasures every role, regardless of the character's importance in a project, the actor felt that his latest stint as Dae, a Korean high school student and Kitty's boyfriend in "XO, Kitty," will become a milestone in his acting career.

Choi Min-yeong (Saram Entertainment) Choi Min-yeong (Saram Entertainment)

“I think ‘XO, Kitty’ will be a turning point in my life, because it was a real eye-opener and brought (me) many opportunities,” Choi said in a recent interview with The Korea Herald at his agency Saram Entertainment in Gangnam-gu, southern Seoul.

“Unlike previous projects, I was able to join the series from the pre-production stage. From video shooting to post-production, press conferences and the series premiere, I participated in various events as one of the lead actors and worked to promote the show. These experiences made me feel like I really took part in ‘XO, Kitty,’” Choi said.

The young star also shared that being surrounded by actors and staff from various cultural backgrounds helped to expand his horizons.

“I certainly felt like I gained a wider perspective. One interesting experience was that I got to work with various directors in different episodes. This is not common in South Korea. The directors had different things that they requested from the actors and prioritized in the series,” the actor said.

“It was a challenge, but I put my utmost effort into the series. And I believe these are valuable experiences which will allow me to become a better actor,” Choi continued.

The young actor did not forget to send his gratitude to his “XO, Kitty” classmates for helping him speak fluent English.

“I lived in Canada for a year when I was a child. I started to study English to audition for the series. I continued to speak English for more than seven months while working on 'XO, Kitty,' starting December 2021. I felt that I became comfortable with the language when I spent a lot of time with my colleagues,” he said, adding that English naturally seeped into his daily life.

Choi Min-yeong (left) plays the role of Kitty's boyfriend, Dae, in Choi Min-yeong (left) plays the role of Kitty's boyfriend, Dae, in "XO, Kitty" (Netflix)

Choi, who debuted as a child actor at 10 years old in 2012, said that there was a time when he was uncertain about becoming an actor.

“There was a time when I questioned whether I really had what it takes to be an actor. I asked myself whether I was only doing it because I simply liked acting. But, after I went to an arts high school, I had the chance to study performing arts and think deeply about myself. This opportunity allowed me to work as an actor,” he explained.

Until recently, Choi had said that he would have liked to take on a more adult role as soon as possible and present different sides of himself. However, he now feels that he can do many things while playing a student as well.

“Regardless of whether I am in a school uniform or not, I hope to do more projects and take on versatile roles in the future,” the actor added.