Actor Yoo Ah-in has played a variety of adolescent characters on both big and small screens since he made his debut with the coming-of-age TV series Sharp (2004). His roles have been unusually deep and emotionally serious for a young actor, ranging from a rebellious high school student in Punch (2011) and an insane crown prince in the historical drama The Throne (2015) to a sensitive young man in the psychological thriller Burning (2018), a critics' prizewinner at Cannes. Who is Park Bo-gum, the ‘Nation’s Boyfriend’ of K-drama? This has led to him becoming known as a dramatic actor on the South Korean entertainment scene, one who chooses thoughtful characters or projects with social implications. View this post on Instagram #살아있다 A post shared by 유아인YOOAHIN (@hongsick) on May 29, 2020 at 2:45am PDT In the upcoming zombie thriller #Alive , however, Yoo takes the role of a young guy named Joon-woo who lives a mundane life, getting up late in the morning and enjoying computer games like the boy next door. Directed by Cho Il-hyung, known as Il Cho abroad, #Alive revolves around Joon-woo, isolated and struggling to survive in a city infected by a mysterious virus. Joon-woo, one of only two survivors in a zombie-hit apartment block, falls into deep loneliness and despair before discovering the other survivor. “I've played many serious characters, who portray the ideal youth of the generation in a literary or implicit way,” said the 33-year old actor. “But I'm not a person like that.” View this post on Instagram A post shared by 유아인YOOAHIN (@hongsick) on May 10, 2016 at 12:14am PDT Yoo, one of the most socially outspoken actors in his generation, said it was part of his strategy to differentiate himself from other actors or actresses about his age. But this time, he wanted to take on the spontaneous and unflattering side of acting in #Alive . 5 things to know about K-drama comeback star Kim Soo-hyun “It feels too heavy for me to keep dealing with such solemn characters, and I think my fans feel the same,” he said. “Now, it will feel fresher for them to see my friendly, comfortable side in #Alive. This change will help remove a barrier set between an actor and viewers.” View this post on Instagram A post shared by 유아인YOOAHIN (@hongsick) on Nov 17, 2019 at 1:13am PST To look like a commonplace 20-something, the versatile actor gained weight and had his hair dyed. “I had no idea whether being skinny or plump looks more ordinary or typical,” he said, laughing. “I tried to make myself a bit chubby and round – who loves ready-to-eat meals?” Moreover, as part of his changed approach to narrow the gap with his fans, he decided to appear in the popular reality show I Live Alone , revealing his everyday life for the first time. “I'd closed myself to TV variety shows, as I thought they were too difficult and strange for me,” said Yoo, who also works as a creative director and fashion design artist. “Now I've become more open to TV shows, and I think I can take one step closer to the public.” View this post on Instagram A post shared by 유아인YOOAHIN (@hongsick) on Dec 14, 2018 at 9:18pm PST He said his off-screen career as an artistic director and curator has also helped him expand his views as an actor. He founded Studio Concrete in 2014, a creative collective with a group of artists born in the 1980s and working in various fields like advertising, graphic design and product design. 5 things to know about the K-pop star, CEO and Hollywood actor Rain View this post on Instagram "Smoking Man" by@chulhwa #StudioConcrete #BODYLANGUAGE A post shared by 유아인YOOAHIN (@hongsick) on Jan 29, 2016 at 1:37am PST “It has led me to think of my acting or my films in a bigger point of view,” he told Yonhap. “And it also helps me seek a longer-term chemistry with the public.” Want more stories like this? Sign up here . Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram , YouTube and Twitter . This article originally appeared on Korea Times.