You only have to look at actor Park Bogum and a doting mother’s smile will spontaneously appear on your face.  You could forget the whole world when you look into those puppy eyes and bright smile [teeth].  His smile is a like a fast-ball that strikes you directly at the heart because you know that despite the perfect looks that even the industry has lauded, here is a young man who has grown to be healthy [in outlook], bright and upright.  As if setting out to prove this, Park Bogum impresses you even more by maintaining the same humbleness he maintained before his rise to fame and receiving the public’s passionate adoration.

Below is a Q&A with Park Bogum

Youth Over Flowers is on air.  What is your impression of it?

It’s thanks to Reply 1988 that I was able to join Youth Over Flowers.  For me it’s a fortuitous event and an honor.  Actually, because I was alone in Korea when I got kidnapped to go to Africa after I was done filming, I didn’t know how or what the hyungs were doing.  It was when I watched the broadcast that I saw how much they truly worried about me and I was very grateful.  Particularly after I missed my flight.  They could have gotten angry at me, but Kyunpyo hyung even bought a burger for me and when Jun Yeol hyung asked to talk to me [when I called] he comforted me by telling me “don’t be frugal with money” and Jae Hong hyung warned me “it’s not very safe” and worried about me.  I am grateful as I find out these things that I didn’t know before.  I also look forward to Fridays.  I wish it would come soon (laugh).

Your missing your flight must have been a shock to you but it was a shock to the viewers as well. How did that happen?

It was quite a shock. I like traveling and I’ve been to many places but I have never missed a flight before. We were on the last leg of the trip waiting for the connecting flight. The PDs and writers had no time to pay attention because they were busy interviewing me and filming. That’s why I took on the role of Guide Park and was trying to organize and take care of things. I guess I was trying to show my leadership skills (laugh). We went to eat and when I checked the time it was 5:50. Boarding was until 6:20. When I checked the boarding passes and boarding gate, the information didn’t match. It said gate A0 when we actually had to be at gate A30, so you could say we ran for our lives. Even the airline employee we passed by told us to hurry. We really ran with all our might and arrived at the gate prior to gate closing time at 6:07 but they told us we couldn’t board because the captain had already signed the passenger manifest and left (pouts).

Seeing as though you memorized the time schedule to the precise minute, it must really have been quite a shock.

Yes. Everyone was relying on me so I was really at a loss what to do. This was going to cause a discrepancy in the planned budget. I really tried to appeal to them and asked them to let us board, telling them that “according to the scheduled boarding time, there is still time left, so why can’t we board?” But on the inside, I was thinking all sort of things like asking myself “what do I do know? Should I just cry?” But they adamantly denied us and coldly told us to just come back in the morning. But I was very grateful that when I arrived in Africa everyone welcomed me warmly and Na PD even said I went through a lot to get to Africa.

How did you feel when you were kidnapped for Youth Over Flowers?  Everyone was talking about how courteous you were.

At first I was really scared. Actually, after I finished filming “Music Bank” for KBS2 I noticed the Youth Over Flowers car prior to getting into my car and thought “oh, I haven’t seen this type of car.” There was a green light under the car so it was really kind of amazing. I was wondering, “is that an optional feature too?” But later Kyungpyo hyung called and said to turn around and I saw that the same car was behind us. I got really scared and looked to the front, but my manager hyung was laughing. I got even more scared then and asked why I had to get into the other car. Afterwards [when people from the other car] got out of the car holding a camera I was wondering “what’s this?” and it was then that I realized what was happening. Afterwards I was just amazed with everything and felt honored. I’ve watched the Youth Over Flowers series faithfully before. I have thought: “I want to go on a trip too. If I were to be on that program, who would I go with?” I was really fortunate to go on this trip with the nice hyungs from R88 (EungPal).

How did you feel when you found out the trip destination was Africa?

When I found out the destination was Namibia, Africa, it seemed very strange and unfamiliar. When one thinks of Africa, one gets a sense of something really alien. But surprisingly Africa had many green forests and many animals. It was an amazing experience.

What was most memorable about the trip? 

The sunset. The lilac lights of the sunset in the desert were really beautiful. The stars were also really a sight to see. The stars were really bright and shiny. The desert really was truly as I have seen in books and screensavers (laugh).There wasn’t a cloud in the sky and because there were no tall buildings the view was great.

We also want to hear about your memories of Phuket.

In the drama, I had more parts alone than with others. I either went to the baduk club or played baduk. For that reason, I was really glad to be able to spend time with the hyungs and sunbaes in Phuket. There were many activities available in the resort, so I went parasailing, snorkeled and even rode a peanut boat. I swam a lot too. My face has gotten tanned since then. In Phuket it got tanned and then in Africa it turned into chocolate milk(?). It turned into a roasted egg(?) (laugh).

The picture with Lee Il Hwa was in the spotlight because you appeared close like a couple.

I saw that picture too. I was amazed (laugh). Sunbae has always taken care of me like a son.
 She has even said that her first choice for a son-in-law would be Taek. I was grateful that she took good care me in Phuket too. That picture looks like I was on a date with Il Hwa sunbae (laugh). The other sunbaes went somewhere else so I walked around with Il Hwa sunbae and went to the beach with her as well.

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