PhilStar has posted their interview with Lee Byung-hun, the actor who portrayed Storm Shadow in GI Joe Retaliation. It turns out that he did not want The Rock to take his shirt off next to him during scenes since he would look smaller in comparison. He also reveals that director Jon Chu wanted the fight scenes to be more brutal:“Because if Dwayne took his shirt off, I would appear very small beside him.” (Laughs!) “You know, Jon said that he wanted the movie to be more real, so I really trained hard. Jon said he wanted to show the brutality of the fights and steer away from the uptight ninjas we’ve all seen before. He said, ‘When Storm Shadow gets hit in the face, I want to see the blood seeping through his white mask.’”
Since Lee worked out to bulk up for the role, his original costume from Rise Of Cobra not longer fit him him(it was too small).
Lee also revealed that he almost passed out during the fight scene(20+ takes) with Snake Eyes and talked more about his role in the movie:You have several difficult scenes in the movie. Which was the hardest to do?
LBH: “The fight scene with Snake Eyes (played by martial artist Ray Park). It was very dangerous. The second-unit director was perfectionist so he kept on saying, ‘One more time, one more time!’ until I did the whole scene for more than 20 times. My suit was soaked in my sweat; it became so heavy. I was so exhausted that I nearly passed out. Then, he asked me to do it one more time.”
PS: Does the size of the role matter to you?
LBH: “Well, you know, for an actor what’s important is not whether or not your role is big or small; what counts is great presence on screen or that you add a great weight to the whole movie. I’m happy when people tell me that I have a strong presence in this movie. Of course, besides having more action scenes, Storm Shadow’s personal story is also being told and that’s very interesting. Instead of just having the mask on and having the action sequences, I think I was able to show Storm Shadow’s inner feelings. In the first G.I. Joe, Storm Shadow had this villain-kind of look while in the second one, there’s a cynical side of Storm Shadow. However, he’s able to show his emotions and the frustrations that he has to contain inside him because he was framed for things that he didn’t do. In the second movie, Storm Shadow’s character has been enriched in every respect and I’m very pleased about that.”
The article in its entirety can be read at PhilStar.