Tuesday, June 6

Close encounters with Grace Park

Source: KoreAm Journal

Grace Park is running down Hollywood Boulevard, all 6 feet of her (5 feet 9 inches without the stilettos) poured into a lipstick-red dress. Tourists near Grauman’s Chinese Theatre stop and stare, while male passersby crane their necks to catch sight of the toothsome stunner.

“Who’s that?” Conversations ensue in several languages and soon, a Frenchman, a Russian woman, an Italian couple and a group of Japanese students are all snapping photos of the lady in red and her silver spaceman.

This is a glimpse into a possible near future: Park fleeing an international menagerie of paparazzo. It is also a snapshot of the present: Park with extraterrestrial life form. Well, not really.

Park is one of the stars of “Battlestar Galactica” (BSG), the Sci Fi Channel’s remake of the 1970s TV series. The modern rendition, a surprise hit that has garnered a cult following, is about a group of humans who survived a genocidal attack and their quest to find a new home on Earth. Their search for home, however, is obfuscated by Cylons, a race of man-made creatures hell-bent on destroying their creators.

It’s all about survival.

If there are any BSG fans on Hollywood Boulevard, they don’t seem to recognize Park, who plays a Cylon who doesn’t know she’s a Cylon until later. (Note to non-BSG fans: explanation to follow.) When not in military garb, Park is dressed down on the show.

But today she’s glammed up, as if for the runway. A former model, Park is no stranger to the catwalk. She struts down the Walk of Fame, seemingly oblivious to the gawking and pointing. And with professional aplomb, she coolly complies as the photographer maneuvers her through the crowd.

Spectators bundled up in hats and thick coats against the chilly weather look on as Park, though a Vancouver, Canada, resident, shivers nonetheless in her paper-thin dress. She grins and bears it, though. She did, after all, tell the photographer: “I’m game to do crazy things.”

Park is the kind of girl you’d want to have a beer with, except that she’s not much of a drinker. She is, at turns, giddy, goofy, introspective and engaging. She’s down to earth — almost tomboyish — and her greetings are usually informal salutations, like “Hey, punk!” followed by a headlock.

Compliment Park on her depth and compassion and she gives you mock evil laughter, à la Dr. Evil from “Austin Powers.” Praise her beauty or hard work, and she deflects the praise, mentioning others’ contributions, or she just changes the subject.

Park is multilayered but stops short of being complex — if only because, in Hollywood, “complex” is code for “high-maintenance b-tch.” She’s anything but. On the 45-minute drive from the KoreAm office to Hollywood, for example, she took the backseat in the cramped Toyota minivan, drawing in her long legs close to her chest so the person seated in front would have more room. In the makeup chair, she’s ever mindful of what the artist is trying to do — “Am I sitting too tall for you? Look up or down?”

Click the KoreAm Journal link to Read the rest of the article.

Newshound: weissman

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