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′G.I. Joe 2′ Director Jon Chu Says Now He Knows Why Lee Byung Hun is the ′Tom Cruise of Asia′

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2012.12.13 21:00 Mwave Oh, MiJung Translation Credit : Erika Kim

Jon Chu, director of the Hollywood film G.I. Joe 2, didn′t hold back on the praise he had to give for Storm Shadow Lee Byung Hun.

Jon Chu and Lee Byung Hun attended a special Asia press conference in Hong Kong on December 12, and talked about G.I. Joe 2, which is set for a release in March 2013. This day a new 3D video from the film was also unveiled.

′G.I. Joe 2′ Director Jon Chu Says Now He Knows Why Lee Byung Hun is the ′Tom Cruise of Asia′

Jon Chu said, "Lee Byung Hun really was Storm Shadow in the film. Everyone in the staff started to think differently of Lee Byung Hun. There′s a scene where Storm Shadow has to speak in a minute-long monologue, and Lee Byung Hun managed to pull it off nicely. I knew that Lee Byung Hun is a great actor, but I didn′t know he would be this good. He made Storm Shadow a real character."

He then added, "Now I know why they call Lee Byung Hun the ′Tom Cruise of Asia′. He did great in the action scenes, but he also gave depth to his character through emotional acting. I was touched."

His praise continued.

"Lee Byung Hun is humble and passionate toward his work. He also gets into character easily and he has great concentration. Bruce Willis, the other actors and I all learned from him. He also showed us many possibilities in regard to marketing," he said.

He added, "Lee Byung Hun changed the culture of Hollywood. He opened more possibilities for Asian stars to make it into Hollywood."

He then finished by saying that he plans to visit Korea to promote the film next year when the film premieres, and said, "Lee Byung Hun said he would help me have fun in great locations in Korea. I′m looking forward to it very much."

Lee Byung Hun said modestly about the praise, "In Hollywood, they always praise you so generously," and said in praise for Jon Chu, "Director Jon Chu works hard to get the video he wants."

Lee Byung Hun, who is nine years older than Jon Chu, then said, "I respect him as a director regardless of age. I told him to call me hyung (big brother), but he can′t pronounce it yet."

G.I. Joe 2 is the sequel to G.I. Joe : The Rise of Cobra, which premiered in 2009. It is a blockbuster film that cost 185 million dollars (200 billion won) to produce. It aimed to premiere in June, but the date was postponed to March 2013, when it will premiere in 3D.

Photo credit: CJ E&M

Reach reporter Oh MiJung on Twitter @isyutar!

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