Starting as a Child Actor in This Life Chapter 22

Chapter 22

“She seems to have glared at you.”

Seohan noticed Jiyoon glaring at Suhyeon with narrowed eyes.

As soon as their eyes met, however, Jiyoon pretended not to notice and turned to smile at the staff, but Seohan was not so obtuse as to miss the signs.

“Are you two acquainted?”

“Umm. I saw her for the first time during the last reading session.”


He chuckled lightly, catching the meaning hidden between the lines.

The lead role often became the subject of jealousy.

While adults might hide their feelings and smile, children, less skilled in concealing their emotions, often displayed their jealousy outwardly.

But it’s rare to see jealousy towards a different gender.

Seohan briefly pondered before dismissing his thoughts about Jiyoon.

Navigating the treacherous waters of the entertainment industry, it was rare not to harbor jealousy.

While it was one thing to slander or harass someone out of jealousy, using it as a drive to improve oneself was, in fact, welcomed.

“You’re not being bullied, are you?”

“We’ve only met once.”

Suhyeon shook his head lightly.

To him, Jiyoon’s hostility was akin to a puppy’s barking.

‘It’s just a tiny thing trying to be lively,’ was all he thought.

No matter how small and fragile his current body was, Suhyeon’s mind was twenty-five years old, and he was not the kind of adult to lose his temper over a child’s pettiness.

“Besides, working hard is better for the drama, right?”

“That’s true.”

“Lee Seohan, your shoot is ready. The director is asking for you. Suhyeon, you should come too.”


As the kids calmed down, a staff member quickly approached the two actors.

They were eager to proceed quickly before any tears or tantrums could ensue.

Since a prolonged shoot benefited no one, Suhyeon and Seohan promptly followed him into the shooting area.

* * *

“Hello, kids. I’ll be your homeroom teacher, Ha Kichan. Please take care of me.”

“Your name is weird!”


“Teacher, you’re handsome!”

The uncontrolled students blurted out whatever they wished, instantly filling the classroom with noise.

Kichan tried to calm the kids, but as a new teacher, controlling such spirited children was beyond him.

Within this chaos, Kichan noticed a student hunched over.

Jang Yeonwu was sitting by himself with his head down.

“Cut! Now, we’ll move to Jang Yeonwu’s individual shot, so please slightly move the camera to the side desk… Cue!”

Suhyeon, observing the camera’s gaze moving from his feet upwards, nervously pulled at his long sleeves and bit his lips as if uncomfortable among many children.

Despite his visibly shaking demeanor, Suhyeon’s sparkling appearance made his actions seemed like those of a frightened young animal or a pitiful underdog.

“Cut! Okay, let’s move to the next scene straight away!”

The PD immediately gave the okay sign after checking the monitor.

With many scenes queued up, the PD and production team were busy.

Hmm. It’s a bit…

Recalling his recent performance, Suhyeon pondered over his acting.

He had hoped to portray a character that evoked both pity and sadistic pleasure, but his “Jang Yeonwu” came across as merely pitiable and pathetic.

It’s hard to express complex emotions without dialogue. Maybe because my muscles aren’t fully developed? But I’ve been stretching my facial muscles every day…

As his acting coach Siyoung had pointed out, Suhyeon was less adept at conveying all emotions and situations through expressions alone, compared to his skills in persuasive dialogue and other areas.

Even though he was considered a prodigy compared to other child actors, it was a small consolation if it didn’t satisfy him.

But the silver lining is… probably my face.

Watching Seohan’s individual shoot, Suhyeon lightly touched his face.

To him, the somewhat satisfactory element of his performance was indeed his appearance.

His face was refreshing, enjoyable to look at, and had the power to dissolve any anger with its charm, making up for the 2% that was lacking in his expression.

Ahaha. My face is the plot twist. For such a face to become merely nice-looking is a loss to humanity.

While Suhyeon was lost in thought, Seohan’s individual shoot concluded.

The staff efficiently prepared for the next scene.

“Let’s move to the self-introduction scene. Cue!”

At the director’s signal, several child actors stiffened with tension.

They were the ones with lines.

Was it one or two of them they said they’d use?

This shoot involved a few child actors participating in a self-introduction, with only the best take being selected for the final cut.

If the PD was satisfied with the scene within two takes, the opportunity wouldn’t go to the next in line.

But if even after several attempts, no satisfactory scene was achieved, all except the scenes involving the role of class president Kim Chaeun were to be discarded without a retake.

It’s not like it’s a survival show or anything.

Indeed, there was a contradiction in the PD’s proposal.

If time was of the essence, it would have been more time-efficient to exclude certain scenes from the get-go rather than filming and discarding them.

After all, if a scene was shot, it made sense to strive for a good outcome, even if it was a fleeting part.

The approach of “shoot first and discard if unsatisfied” was highly inefficient.

…Well, when has a filming site ever operated logically and ideally?

Suhyeon could only guess there were adult circumstances at play and hoped the children caught in the middle would do their best.

Especially because a certain kind of “consideration” was palpable.

Right. It’s not every day you get to shoot amidst the leads.

Everyone knew that shooting in chronological order was beneficial for emotional immersion and acting prowess.

However, on set, it was preferred to keep the main actors waiting for five minutes and shoot the supporting actors’ scenes rather than have the supporting actors wait for two to three hours and shoot after the main actors’ scenes were done.

It was a phenomenon that arose due to the difference in appearance fees, and in that sense, the current shoot was quite unusual

Give trouble and then remedy… I hate to say it, but…

Despite being a child actor like the others, Suhyeon wouldn’t face such treatment since he was also one of the main characters, so speaking out would only seem hypocritical, like crocodile tears.

Knowing it was an opportunity, the child actors immersed themselves in their roles despite being nervous.

One child, overwhelmed by nerves, delivered an overly lengthy introduction and was cut, but managed to avoid the scene being dropped altogether.

“Alright, now it’s Suhyeon’s turn… Cue!”

Suhyeon let go of his thoughts about the other children and lowered his gaze.

Then, with some hesitation, he stood up.

“Hello… My name is Yeonwu…”

Unlike the other children who introduced themselves brightly and without hesitation, Suhyeon fiddled with his fingers throughout, playing the anxious and withdrawn “Jang Yeonwu,” a child overwhelmed by the spotlight.

“Hello, Yeonwu. What are your hobbies?”


“Yes, can you tell your friends what you like to do?”

“Uh… I, I like reading fairy tales.”

As Jang Yeonwu,, Suhyeon barely managed to smile while looking at Ha Kichan.

But the smile didn’t last long.

“I, I wike weading doo-doo books.”

“Puhaha! Same here!”

Someone mocked the boy’s speech, igniting laughter all around.

Suhyeon clenched his clothes with his fidgeting hands.

“Cut! Everyone’s doing great today, huh? Is it just a good day?”

The PD, anticipating more trouble from filming with many children, joked about the unexpectedly smooth progress.

Of course, the friendly atmosphere didn’t slow down the pace.

“Let’s hurry up and finish all the elementary school scenes!”

Since the filming location was borrowed, it was better to minimize the number of shots.

The shooting staff moved quickly as the location issue was more problematic than the child actors’ appearance fees.

* * *

“Jiyoon, the PD wants us to check the next scene.”


Having stepped aside for the leads, Jiyoon followed a staff member, moving briskly.

She was in high spirits today.

Though not as much as Suhyeon, she stood out among the children.

I’ll outshine him soon enough!

The young girl believed her mother’s flattering words that she could have a bigger role than the lead actor.

Especially since she thought herself a better actor than Suhyeon.

Hmph. Just a pretty face but not that great in acting. I could do that too if given the chance.

Jiyoon freely disparaged Suhyeon’s skills.

She considered it a given that she would dominate any scenes shot with him.

Of course, such a thought was clearly visible to Suhyeon as well.

Something… like a child who believes in Santa.

It wasn’t hard for him to guess Jiyoon’s thoughts because of a comment he had heard during the last reading session.

The extra desire to tease her for being too cocky was just a bonus.

Yeah, it’s about time a nine-year-old learned about the bitterness of the world.

Suhyeon skimmed through the upcoming lines.

Conveniently, it was a scene where Jang Yeonwu and Kim Chaeun were in conflict.

This will be fun.

He tapped the script, smiling like a mischievous cat.

A rather amusing idea had crossed his mind.

* * *

Jang Yeonwu was the perfect kid to underestimate.

Unkempt hair, stretched-out sleeves, and a stuttering tone when nervous.

The kids categorized Yeonwu as someone they could ignore.

His attitude of sitting quietly in a corner, not trying to make friends during breaks, only fueled that notion.

“Hi! I’m Kim Chaeun! And you are?”

Not everyone ignored Yeonwu, though.

Chaeun, who had won over most of her classmates with her lively self-introduction and bright personality, approached him.

She looked at Yeonwu with a mix of curiosity in her eyes.

“Jang… Yeonwu.”

“You were nervous earlier, right? I get it! It’s normal to feel jittery on the first day, right?”


Her attitude was one-sided, but Yeonwu, who had grown up among those who were oppressive and violent, was used to having his opinions disregarded.

The fact that she didn’t resort to violence, even when he stuttered, actually eased his mind.

“…Thank you.”

Following the flow of such emotions, Suhyeon, portraying Yeonwu, grinned widely at Jiyoon.

It was a smile that conveyed a strange sense of trust and fulfillment.

Jiyoon, reciting Chaeun’s lines, stared back at Suhyeon’s smile.

What’s this…?

Jiyoon unwittingly opened her mouth.

Even though she was sure she disliked Suhyeon, seeing him smile made her want to be kind to him.

A sense of mercy she had never felt before sprouted, along with a subtle self-justification like “He’s only five, so I, as his noona, should forgive him.”

“Chaeun …?”

It was only when Suhyeon called her “Chaeun” instead of “Jiyoon” that she snapped out of it.

Realizing she had spaced out during the shoot, Jiyoon tried to grab Suhyeon’s wrist, her face reddening.

In her panic, she forgot her lines and immediately followed the directive to act.


However, what returned to Jiyoon was a cold refusal.


Suhyeon brushed off Jiyoon’s hand and apologized, trembling, worried his wrist injury might be exposed, resembling a wet puppy.

“Cut! Good job, both of you!”

While Jiyoon stood there, dumbfounded, the director called cut.

He praised their performance and immediately prepared for the next angle.


As the adults busied themselves, Jiyoon bit her lip, head bowed.

Losing her mother after throwing a tantrum.

When she fought with a friend and adults only took the friend’s side.

Memories of not knowing what to do and eventually crying flashed through her mind.

Who do you think you are, making that face…?

Jiyoon didn’t realize that the emotion Suhyeon expressed was fear mixed with hostility.

Yet, the moment she saw his face, she felt only betrayal and sorrow, shocking her into forgetting her lines.

The PD is also bad. Calling such a dumbfounded expression good acting..

It wasn’t just Suhyeon’s acting that made her feel sorrowful.

The PD, who praised her stunned silence as good acting, also made her angry.

It was her acting, yet it felt like nobody saw her, which scared her.

This feels weird…

Jiyoon felt as though she had become the dancing girl in red shoes.

The shoot had seemed out of control, and Suhyeon, smaller than her, had appeared much larger.

Believing she was just unlucky, Jiyoon learned the feeling of defeat that day.

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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