Starting as a Child Actor in This Life Chapter 14

Chapter 14

Assistant Director Seo Gyeongsu greeted Suhyeon and Sangil quite politely.

Although just a child actor, Suhyeon was related to the casting of a lead actor, so the AD seemed somewhat humble.

Sangil, who was in charge of the negotiations today, fully exploited the AD’s attitude.

It meant he was negotiating with all his might.

“Lee Seohan’s acting skills are famous among the public. He has been in the theatre world for a long time, so he has a solid fan base there… I understand there’s only about a 2,000 difference since he’s still ‘on the rise,’ unlike others who have reached their peak.”

“Ah, yes. That’s true.”

“But you must really want to use an expensive actor.”

“Excuse me?”

“It seems like you don’t want to cast our actor.”

“Surely not.”

“But does this price make sense?”

Sangil pointed out that Suhyeon and Seohan were being packaged together.

And he emphasized that Suhyeon was not just an “extra” but an essential element in this package.

“If you want to cut costs by casting a cheap child actor, you should do the same with the male lead, right? Well, now that I think about it, there are many great actors. Park Kisoo or Lee Hyeongbin might fit well too.”

“Hmm. Look at this.”

When Sangil laughed sarcastically, the AD’s expression clouded with anger.

Even as a cable broadcasting AD, not a terrestrial one, it must have been annoying to see a mere child actor’s manager walking all over him.

Of course, Suhyeon, who was watching the scene, just sucked on his drink, wishing there was popcorn.

“The industry average treatment is fine. But you know our current situation doesn’t fit that average.”

“Ah, but still….”

“AD Seo Gyeongsu. Our actor Kang Suhyeon was the one who led Promise of the Blue Summer to a 30 percent viewership. And that’s without the lead actors. You can’t discount Yoon Seora’s help, but it was clear who played the main role.”

“Uh, um. I know that but….”

“The truth is that our actor is receiving love calls from everywhere. He came here first wanting to match up with a respected senior actor.”

“Is that so? Um….”

Sangil cooked up the story, even adding some bluff, to handle the AD.

His manner was like a wave crashing in and pushing back, and the AD was like a floating duckweed upon it.

“Hmm. So, that means… Suhyeon, what do you think?”

Unable to withstand Sangil’s onslaught, AD Seokyeong turned his target to Suhyeon.

He turned to Suhyeon, who had been quietly watching, and tried to persuade him by matching his eye level.

“The drama looks fun! I want to do it.”


“But Mom told me to listen to Sangil-hyung! I still want to do it, though… So, can’t you listen to what hyung is saying, AD-hyung?”

Suhyeon, who wasn’t one to be played, pulled the “I’m too young to know anything” card.

There was no need to step in and ruin his advantage when it was obvious things were going his way.

“I can act well, too….”

“Ah, Suhyeon’s acting is something I know very well. I’ve seen the drama. It was quite impressive.”


“Yes, yeah.”

Disappointed by the AD’s attempt to lower the price, Suhyeon cast his eyes down, eliciting a sense of guilt from the AD for having troubled a child, prompting him to utter words that were disadvantageous to himself.

And Sangil didn’t miss this opening.

“AD Seo Gyeongsu. So, you also understand that it’s not strange for our actor to get this price.”

“Ah, that is….”

“You know that a product whose value is cut down doesn’t perform its role properly. Now, imagine this. ‘Young Jiwu,’ who shed tears in Promise of the Blue Summer, now becomes ‘Jang Yeonwu’ and cries on screen again.”

He lured the AD with the name of the child actor’s character in the upcoming drama.

Sangil’s voice had a strange power, and Seokyeong, who initially had a grimace, soon listened carefully to his words.

“…And then we aim for 4 percent viewership! You know that 4 percent for cable is close to 40 percent for terrestrial, right?”

“Four percent… Is that possible?”

“Of course! Why do you think JEIL Group launched TNB? They saw the expansion of cable channels and the growing pie and drew the big picture. If you do well here, AD, you’re the founding contributor of the network! The founding contributor!”

“The founding contributor… Right, it’s still the early days….”

“Think big, really big. Besides, this appearance fee, it might look expensive at first glance, but we’re talking about Lee Seohan and our Suhyeon, right? You won’t get this price with other actors and child actors.”

“That’s true. Actually, we were considering changing the boy’s role to a girl due to the lack of suitable male child actors….”

“That’s why this is the necessary cost. If you choose our Suhyeon, this drama will succeed.”


Suhyeon watched Sangil and Seokyeong, and he now understood how Sangil had managed to corner his mother, Jiyeon.

The sense of stability and strong voice, the convincing numbers, and the promising blueprint…

In a different way from Suhyeon, Sangil had a remarkable talent for beguiling people.

He’s a real con artist. I should watch and learn.

Rolling an ice cube in his mouth, Suhyeon memorized Sangil’s way of speaking, eye contact, gestures, and so on.

In an industry where one had to attract attention and be the center of focus, such skills were very useful.

Especially on variety shows.

The power of speech was different from acting.

But they were close relatives, and knowing how to handle one could create a significant synergy with the other.

Chaemin-hyung really sent a good person… But he’s not really a former con artist, is he?

Signing a contract for three times more than his debut work, Suhyeon glanced at Sangil’s face.

His smiling face was reassuring yet somehow suspicious.


“Thank you for today! So cool!”

“Actor Kang Suhyeon was pretty good too.”

“Thank youuu.”

After getting off at his house, Suhyeon smiled broadly, still wearing the mask of a childlike innocence.

In his hand he held the contract he had signed today, along with the scripts for episodes 1 and 2.

I’ll have to read the latter parts at the company due to leakage issues, but hey, at least the scripts are complete, right?

Fitting for a drama that TNB had been eagerly preparing, Praise was already in a state with 16 episodes’ scripts completed.

The PD, who also handled the screenplay, was fine-tuning the detailed dialogues, but there were no issues in reading the plot.

Plus, Director Lee Bongchun…

Suhyeon, who had only seen the works while learning to act, was unaware of the stories behind the scenes.

He didn’t know that Director Lee Bongchun had initially prepared for a drama, nor that he had compressed a 16-episode drama to create the movie I Love You, Mom.

The drama production must have either been scrapped or he had too much lingering attachment to had wanted to make it into a movie … No way to know, but that’s some serious tenacity.

Even without knowledge of the external affairs of the production, Suhyeon understood that such passion and obsession could sometimes lead to good results.

If one’s spirit was fully poured into the work itself, rather than money or fame, a good work was bound to result.

…But there’s also a risk of being too obsessed with the characters one created, refusing to recognize the characters brought to life by the actors… That’s something I’ll have to experience to understand.

Today, he should just be happy about the successful schedule.

While he was indulging in such thoughts, Sangil turned off the engine and got out of the car.

“Huh? Hyung, aren’t you leaving?”

“I should escort you to your door. Accidents often happen in moments of ‘It’ll be fine just this once,’ you know.”

“Ah, um.”

“It’s my job. Plus, I need to let your mother know you’ll be attending the academy from tomorrow.”

“Oh. Right.”

Suhyeon recalled tomorrow’s schedule and smiled faintly, thinking of the acting academy he was headed to after signing the contract.

“Do you really like acting, Actor Kang Suhyeon?”

“Yes. I do like it.”

“That’s a good attitude. I wish a certain someone who just likes his hobbies would take a page out of your book and do some work.”


Watching Sangil exaggeratedly sigh, Suhyeon burst into giggles.

This must be the right moment for the saying “laughing when it’s not really laughing.”

Don’t say things to a five-year-old that would even make an adult cringe…

All day long, Sangil treated Suhyeon not as a child, but as an employer.

This was also true for their conversations, and Suhyeon often had to act the part of a pure and innocent child.

He’s capable, but sometimes he tests me, and it’s tiring.

Thinking of making a quick escape, Suhyeon ran off rapidly.

He had to take the elevator together, but for the moment, he wanted to put some distance between them.

“You’ll fall if you run!”

“A race!”

He made a lame excuse and fled, but Suhyeon’s short legs betrayed him.

Ultimately, he was caught before he could get on the elevator, and until Jiyeon opened the door, he had to listen to a lecture about how running in the parking lot was dangerous.

* * *

“Hello, Suhyeon. Did you do your homework well?”


“Let’s see, shall we?”

At Teacher Choi Sikyung’s words, Suhyeon straightened up and presented his assigned mime.

He pretended to peel a banana in the air and stroked a small animal, expressing situations through his actions.

“Hmm… Good. Now, pick a card here and express it.”

After watching the mime for a while, Sikyung spread out small flashcards and had him pick one.

When Suhyeon picked “a child who has been slapped and cries without fighting back,” she clapped her hands against his cheek and then stepped back.

“Ah… sob. I’m sorry. Yeonwu will, Yeonwu will be a better child. Mom…”

With the sound of the clap, Suhyeon’s expression turned one of disbelief, and then he trembled, cupping his cheek.

He seamlessly connected the drama’s situation, and after about a minute of acting review, Sikyung nodded approvingly.

“Good. You did your homework well? You always deliver lines and express emotions in a way that’s beyond your years.”

“Thank you!”

“But your miming could use some work. It’s usually the other way around, but our Suhyeon is quite unique.”

“Is that so?”

Challenged by Sikyung’s remark, Suhyeon tilted his head with wide, innocent eyes while hiding his flustered feelings.

It was an obviously cute act, but since he was genuinely adorable, Sikyung patted his head and moved on from her doubt.

“Don’t worry too much about miming. Just need to enhance your imagination a bit. And our Suhyeon is still young, right? It’ll get better.”


“The drama’s crank-in isn’t for a while, right? I thought it’s still a long way off.”

“There’s only a month left!”

“…Thinking thirty nights are short is hardly childlike. You act just like my twenty-five-year-old son, you know?”


“Shall we move on to today’s lesson?”

Today again, Suhyeon fine-tuned his mask under Sikyung’s keen scrutiny.

It had already been a month since he started attending the academy and taking acting lessons.

She often tested Suhyeon in this way.

Of course, I don’t think she actually believes I’m twenty-five.

Sikyung was a highly capable acting teacher.

She met Suhyeon at his level but taught him as an “actor,” not a “child,” and she didn’t miss out on his areas for improvement.

She did sometimes chill him to the bone by catching on to things he did that were not typical for a child, but it was true that it helped improve Suhyeon’s acting skills.

Starting as a Child Actor in This Life

Starting as a Child Actor in This Life

Score 9.6
Status: Ongoing Type: Author: , Released: 2020
While returning from a late-night shoot, Suhyeon collides with a tow truck driving in the wrong direction with its headlights on... When he regains consciousness, his reflection in the mirror is... a little kid? Even I can see that I'm cute. An unknown idol has become a popular child actor! Get ready, as the captivating performance of actor Kang Suhyeon is about to begin.
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