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F4 Thailand Interview

Sudsapda Collectible Issue (F4 THAILAND)
November 2021

Bright | Win | Nani | Dew
The stars of the upcoming Thai adaptation F4: Boys Over Flowers are here to talk about the series that no-one will want to miss!

F4: Boys Over Flowers has delighted millions of fans across the globe in multiple different languages. Now it's Thailand's turn. Forget what you thought you knew about F4: Boys Over Flowers and get ready to fall in love with the characters all over again as they are brought to life by some of Thailand's hottest young actors.

The series centers around four M.6 (Grade 12) students who are collectively known as F4. These hi-so boys have it all. They're handsome, rich, and enjoy all the perks of being part of Thailand's wealthy elite. The members of F4 bully and persecute the other students at their school, particularly those who don't share their unique viewpoints or dare to stand in their way. The actors who play these characters (Bright - Vachirawit Chivaaree, Win - Metawin Opas-iamkajorn, Dew - Jirawat Sutivanichsak, and Nani - Hirunkit Changkham) insist that everything in this series happens for a reason. F4: Boys Over Flowers doesn't shy away from tough subjects and the actors hope that the viewers can learn from it.


Their behaviors in the series might sometimes upset you, but in real life these charming, friendly actors are just too cute to handle!

Would you please tell us about your characters in this series?


Win: I play the character of "Kavin." He's a perfectionist and something of a Casanova. He loves nothing more than to flirt. (Additional information: Kavin comes from an aristocratic family so he is naturally very well-mannered and courteous. He takes good care of the girls he dates and although his relationships tend to be short, his girlfriends are always happy. He has been hurt romantically in the past and, as a result, he no longer has any faith in love. Kavin also happens to be an expert in business.)

Nani: My character is called "MJ". He a highly confident individual who cares deeply about his gang, F4. He always puts his friends first. (Additional Information: MJ is the son of a shady business owner. He's funny and sweet but he can also be impetuous. He's a colourful member of F4 and the most flirtatious amongst the friends. MJ is very forward in his approach to girls. The most important thing for MJ is friendship. He always supports his friends and stands by their side.) I'm not like MJ. I'm quite calm and chilled. (laughs)


Bright: Did you just go against the writer? (laughs) When we were filming on set I didn't think MJ was that impetuous. (The interview was held during their shooting for F4.)


Nani: I think MJ is like the big brother of F4. He always knows what's going on with the group and he's already there to help his friends. He's very cheerful.

MJ is the most flirtatious guy in the group, right?


Nani: I don't think so. (laughs) Let's just say he's less of a player than Kavin.

Could you tell us more about MJ's forthright approach to girls?


Nani: I think it's because MJ is a direct person. He doesn't beat around the bush.

Bright, what about you?


Bright: I play the role of "Thyme" in this series. Thyme is a self-centered, narcissistic guy who loves his friends. (Additional Information: Thyme is hotheaded. He has the power and means to control the whole school. Throughout his life he has been emotionally neglected by his parents and consequently he never really learnt how to be kind. Despite this, when it come to love he is the most sensitive of all his friends.) Thyme really struggles when it comes to expressing his emotions but he is actually the most sensitive of the group especially when it comes to love.


Dew: I portray the character of "Ren". He doesn't talk much but he is always observant of what's going on around him. When he says something, he says it frankly. He always thinks before he speaks and his words are meaningful. He loves to draw. Ren is the kind of person who actively avoids trouble. (Additional Information: Ren is an introvert. He's clearly different from the other members of F4. It's quite hard to predict what Ren is thinking or what he plans to do. He's strong-willed and tends to do as he pleases. That being said, he makes a concerted effort to avoid upsetting those he cares about the most. Ren likes to observe the behavior of other people and use what he sees to manipulate situations to his advantage.)

It appears that, unlike the other members of F4, Ren isn’t a Casanova at all.


Dew: Correct.


Bright: I think it's more that people just haven't realized yet. (laughs)


Dew: (laughs) If he does like a girl, he will approach her discreetly. He doesn’t discuss it with his friends. He's always observing other people, what they go through, and what will happen next. Before he does anything, he always thinks about the results. He's pretty cautious. This stops him from getting into trouble.

How do you feel about the role that you play, Win?

Win: I think it's quite hard to play this role. Finding the right character for Kavin took a lot of effort. I had to really work hard to get into his head and explore his thoughts. I found that he’s actually a very deep and insightful character.

What is the hardest thing for this role?

Win: Kavin is very calculated. He thinks in steps. Mentally, he's always moving towards his goal.

Is playing a Casanova difficult for you?


Win: It was a little bit difficult. Kavin is naturally charming. He instinctively knows how to approach others.

So, where did you learn about Kavin’s personality?


Win: I learned from P'Bright. (laugh)


Bright: I don't think so. (laugh)


Win: Just kidding! I learned from watching other series that have similar characters.

What about you, Nani? How do you feel about MJ's character?


Nani: I think MJ has a lot of energy. He's an outgoing guy with an abundance of self-confidence and he just loves to party. He’s a really colourful character. It can be hard to capture that level of energy. MJ is effortlessly attractive. Whatever he does seems cool. It was difficult for me to portray such a playboy. I wasn't sure how I was supposed to think or act - Do I need to flirt with lots of girls? Am I supposed to like every girl? How am I supposed to flirt? I had so many questions! I really don't know how to approach girls in the way that MJ would. I had to try to get into MJ's mindset when I was acting. It helped because MJ doesn't think too much. He impulsively does what he wants.

What about you, Bright? How do you feel about Thyme's character?


Bright: I felt sorry for him. I really want people to understand him. He's terrible at expressing his feelings and it would be really easy to assume that he's a bad guy. But once you get to know him, you'll see that he isn't. I'm not going to say anymore because I don't want to give any spoilers away. All I can say is that Thyme is a nice guy. Just be patient with him!


Dew: For me, Ren was quite a difficult character. We’re both similar in some ways but he is definitely more mature. We’re both overthinkers. When I think too much, I get stressed. When Ren thinks too much, he is able to rearrange his thoughts and find clarity. Ren’s character is very complex and a bit strange. I studied lots of different characters to help me prepare for the role of Ren. P’O (Patha Thongpan, the director of F4 Thailand) recommended me to watch a series in which one character is an alien who says less and constantly evaluates the situation.

Does Ren’s love for arts come from you, Dew?


Dew: Yes. In each adaptation of F4: Boys Over Flowers, this character loves art. In some versions of this series, the character loves music, and plays the violin. A lot of focus falls upon the interests and hobbies of Ren. I like to draw so we incorporated that into Ren’s character. In the series, Ren’s drawings always express his feelings and experiences. I think it’s good that I got the role. I actually drew some of the pictures you will see in the series. They’re just quick sketches though.

What about the others - What similarities and differences do you have from your F4 character?


Dew: I think the biggest difference between Ren and I is our level of maturity. I think Ren is a mature guy who likes to be quiet and enjoys his own company. I prefer to stay with my friends as I find it a lot more fun. I think I talk a lot more than Ren too. (laughs) If I'm around a lot of people I talk less. In this series the other characters talk more than Ren. I'm happy to play along.


Bright: Both Thyme and I are quite outspoken. We both struggle express our feelings too. I think the main difference between us is our lifestyles. Growing up as part of the richest family in Thailand, Thyme didn't know that there are 30 baht meals. He only knows the things he's been exposed to in his upper-class society. Thyme and I grew up in very different environments.


Nani: MJ and I both care deeply about other people. MJ perhaps more so. I think the biggest difference between us is confidence. MJ is always very cool but I don't feel that confident. I often find myself wondering how MJ can say and do the things he does. I tried to borrow some of MJ's confidence when I was playing the character. I hope it improved my performance.


Win: I'm a bit of a perfectionist. I want everything to be perfect, just like Kavin. The biggest difference between us is the flirting. He's a professional. He knows exactly what he needs to do or say. Unlike Kavin, I'm not a Casanova.

Did you ever ask the director why you got the role? For example, Win, you play Kavin, but you personally aren't a playboy...


Bright: (Starts laughing and teasing P'Eed, the Artist Manager, who is desperately trying to stifle a laugh)


Win: I'm curious too. Perhaps he thinks I am a playboy. (laughs) Honestly, I auditioned for more than one role. I auditioned for the roles of Thyme and Ren too. I think P'O must have seen that I have some characteristics that are similar to Kavin. Initially I wanted to play Ren because is completely different from me. I thought it would be challenging. But I appreciate playing Kavin too.


Nani: I think that because I look a little rough around the edges, they thought I had the right look to be the son of a shady business owner who has a lot of henchmen. On the day of the casting, I tied my hair up, I think it made me look like a gangster. They let me audition for many roles and asked me which one I liked. I said I liked MJ's role. It's challenging, colourful, and cool. It's extremely different from myself.


Bright: I can't remember why P'O gave me this role. It's been a long time since  I auditioned for the role - February 2020. In my opinion, Thyme isn't the leader but because he's the youngest, the others indulge him. It's like when we were young and we were playing Power Rangers. There would always be one of us who wanted to be the Red Ranger. The Red Ranger isn't the leader, he's just the most stubborn. Thyme is like the Red Ranger. Oh! Did I get the role because P'O thinks I'm the most stubborn? (laughs) Come to think of it, P'O did say l didn't need to adjust myself too much to play this role.


Dew: When I came for casting, P'O only let me audition for Ren's role only but several times. He said I may not be able to play any other role. (laughs) The casting process was pretty simple. We just talked casually about many different things. When we finished talking, P'O said that I'm similar to Ren, but I'm the young version of Ren, so I could adjust myself accordingly in order to fit the role. He also said that I'm a little bit odd. For example, sometimes I laugh at things that other people don't find funny or l get angry at something that I shouldn't. Sometimes I'm just a little difficult to understand.

Have you ever watched F4 before?


Bright: Yes, I have. I watched the Taiwanese version when I was young. It was very popular. I still remember the song from the OST. When I found out that I got the role in Thailand's version of F4, I was really happy. It's such a famous series and all adaptations are very successful.


Dew: I have watched the series before. I couldn't remember the whole story though. When I got the part, I rewatched it again to see whose role I'm going to play. The latest version that I watched was the Chinese version.


Nani: I watched the series a long time ago. My mum loves to watch F4. She's a huge fan. We actually have a picture from the F4 photobooth in front of my bathroom. It's been there since I was young. Incidentally, that picture is a picture of Vanness (Wu Jian Hao, an actor from the Taiwanese version of F4). I think he's cool. When I auditioned for this show, I never thought I would get Vanness' role. My mum screamed for joy when I told her I was going to be part of F4. When I told her I got Vanness' role, she asked why I didn't get Ren's role. Ren is her favourite character. (laughs)


Win: I had heard of F4 before but I thought it was the name of a boy band. When I heard that GMMTV were planning to remake it, I went and watched the series.

Which scene is the hardest for each of you?


Win: I can't tell you without giving away big spoilers. All I can say is that it was a scene that involved a lot of preparation.


Nani: It's a scene in which I have to take care of my friends. I must act like I'm the oldest and solve the problem. Actually, many of my scenes in the series are like this. In every episode there is a problem to solve and MJ is like the group's support system and problem solver.


Bright: Many of my scenes were difficult just because of Thyme's character. He's very different from me in many ways. I had to work hard to understand Thyme's way of thinking and express him accurately. It's been quite challenging for me.


Dew: For some people the dramatic scenes of the emotional scenes might be the most difficult but, for me, the hardest scene is when I have to help "Gorya" (F4 Thailand's leading female character). The way that Ren tries to help is just a bit weird. I think you need to see it for yourself to understand.

Dew and Nani, how do you feel about your debut in a big project as F4 Thailand?


Nani: It's an honour to be a part of this project. There's also a lot of pressure just knowing how many people are looking forward to this series. So, I worked and practiced really hard to be able to show you my best version of MJ.


Dew: I'm really happy to be a part of this project but I also feel the pressure as well. It's my first ever series and the production scale is bigger than anything I've seen before. I was worried that because of my age I wouldn't be ready to be in such a huge project. But being part of F4 Thailand has made me grow up a lot. It's such a big step in my life.

How do you feel playing with the already famous Bright and Win?


Dew: I'm so glad. Before I met them I thought, "Oh! I'm going to see Bright and Win who I just saw on TV." When I saw them in person, they shone so brightly like sunshine that can burn me down.


Bright: Such a poet. (laughs)


Dew: Their sunshine allowed me to photosynthesize and grow from a tiny seed to a big tree.


Win: He is a real poet. (laugh)


Dew: They both have such an aura about them. At first I was really nervous, but they were just so nice and kind. I quickly found myself feeling relaxed around them.


Nani: I felt the same way as Dew. I had seen Bright and Win on television and I felt like they were so famous. I was really nervous about working with them too. I didn't know how to act or what to do.

Did you remember the first time you met them?


Nani: Yes. It was the day I went to cast for the role. I saw Bright through an open door. I couldn't believe how handsome he was, I'm really glad to have the chance to work with both of them. They're both amazing which, to be honest, makes me depressed. I don't want to look bad in comparison. (laughs)

You two are both excited. How about your friends and family?


Dew: Some of my male friends say, "Bro, you're going to be famous for sure." (laughs) Some of my friends don't know F4 but all my friends know Bright and Win. They're big fans. My female friends were extremely excited. They asked me to get them a special birthday greeting from Bright and Win.


Nani: Many of them were shocked.


Win: Perhaps they were shocked because they didn't really know us. (laughs)


Nani: No, no. They were shocked because they do know you. Many of them didn't care about my role in F4. They were too busy focusing on Bright and Win. I had the same thing as Dew - my friends were asking for birthday video clips from Bight and Win too! Actually, my friends did congratulate me for getting the part in F4.

Bright and Win, how do you feel with these two new faces?


Win: Honestly, I'm really excited to work with them too. This is my second series so I haven't been in this industry long either. It's exciting to work with new actors because in my previous projects I usually worked with the same, familiar faces. When I saw Nani, I thought he was cool. He looked unique. As for Dew, he's very tall and model-like. When the four of us are together and dressed as our characters I think we make a great team.


Bright: My opinion is similar to Win's. Initially I only knew that Win and I had been cast in this series. I didn't know who the other two actors would be. After meeting them and working together for a little while, I was really glad that it was Dew and Nani. Their characters really help make F4 great. Both of them put a lot of effort into this project. Please support our series.

Could you please talk about Tu (Tu - Tontawan Tantivejakul), the leading actress who plays the Gorya’s role in F4?


Bright: I think she really fits the role. I can't imagine anyone but Tu playing Gorya.


Dew: I think she is very unique. Her personality really fit the role. She’s cool and a little bit masculine. She's a fantastic actress.


Bright: Yes, her acting is great. Win too! He's been brilliant since his first series.


Win: Actually, I didn't have that many scenes with Tu. Bright is the one who had the most scenes with her.


Bright: She has a good sense of humour. When she had to be among the four of us, she'd have to listen to some men's stuff. She’d act like she was closing her ears and said that she wouldn't listen.


Nani: I didn't have that many scenes with Tu but I can say that she really suits the role. Because Gorya is a strong woman and I saw that in Tu too.

When the news came out about the F4 remake, there were many comments, both positive and negative. A lot of the negative comments focused on the bullying that takes place in this series. How do you feel about it?


Bright: I think people need to watch the series before they judge too harshly. The characters are diverse, just like real people. They are driven by their own backgrounds and experiences. Everything they say and do happens for a reason. I think the writing and production team did a fantastic job with this project. They worked hard to make it relatable to today's society. Please give us a chance and watch it.


Nani: Bright said it perfectly. With regards to the bullying, everyone, even bullies, have their own story to tell. Everyone deserves the opportunity to grow, change, and become a better person.


Bright: Hey! No spoilers! (laughs) Anyway, please try to get to know the characters first. Thyme and the other members of F4 are not good at expressing their feelings but once you start to watch this series, you will come to understand them and maybe even like them!


Win: I can't wait for everyone to see who these characters become by the end of the series.


Dew: Everything happens for a reason.


Bright: This series is a bit of a rollercoaster. Every single episode is very intense. At the core, all the different F4 adaptations are about four rich students. But each version of this series has its own unique flavor. The story and the details change. Fans who have already watched other versions of F4 will be pleasantly surprised when they tune it to F4 Thailand. I think our take on this series brings lots of new and interesting things to the table.

We predict that after the series airs, there will be Dew-Nani couple, just like Bright-Win. How do you feel about it?


Dew-Nani: (laughs)


Bright: It's all good. We're happy to give the fans whatever they want – Bright-Nani, Dew-Nani, Win-Dew, Win-Nani, Win-Tu, Bright-Tu, or perhaps they'd want to be Team Win, Team Bright, Team Nani, or Team Dew. Whatever it is, we're fine with it!

Did you ever get bullied while you were a student?


Nani: I think everyone has experienced some form of bullying before. For many people it's just limited to teasing. It depends on the situation I guess. I'll admit that I have bullied my friends before, but as a response to them bullying me. It was more like teasing than bullying. As I grew up, I started to realize how terrible bullying is and how it can have severe long-term effects on people. It's awful! I'd never tease or bully anyone now.


Win: I think that bullying is quite common at a young age. I think a lot of it stems from young people learning how to navigate the situation or how to recognize boundaries. Now that we're adults, we have a much clearer sense of what's right and what isn't. We know that bullying is wrong.


Bright: I studied at an all-boys school. Teasing friends was just a normal, everyday occurrence. Back then I didn't feel as though I was being bullied. It was just banter between friends. But as I grew up, I learned that if we don't like something, we shouldn't do it to others too.


Dew: I think everyone has experienced some form of bullying before. Sometimes it happens unwittingly. Perhaps people tease their friends about something, not knowing that it is a sensitive subject. The intention was to tease their friend, but they ended up bullying him instead. I can't deny that I might have done it before but as I grew up, I learnt the importance of being empathetic and putting myself in other's shoes. This made me a better person.

Could you please say something to the bullies in our society? Especially the ones who think it's "all just a laugh"?


Win: As Dew said, we should put ourselves in other people's shoes. It's very important. Think how you would feel if you were the victim. Why would you want to make someone else feel that way?


Nani: We need to care for other people and think wisely before doing something. As Dew said, we don't know their background so we might accidentally end up bullying them. Just be mindful of people's feelings before you act. If you wouldn't like it happening to you, don't do it to others.


Dew: We don't know what's happened in a person's past or what their weak points are. Sometimes we might unintentionally bully them. If they're visibly unhappy with what you're saying, stop. You're hurting their feelings. Try to pay attention to people's emotions and avoid behavior that will make others feel uncomfortable.


Bright: I'd like to offer my support to all victims of bullying. There is nothing we can do to change other people, but we can change ourselves. You might not feel this way right now but, trust me, you are strong. Stronger than you know. Focus on yourself and you'll keep getting stronger. You're going to be okay.

Note

The English translation was directly taken from the magazine. We only corrected the typos in the names of actors, actress and characters.