Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Lee Byung-hun Cleared of Defamation Charges

Actor Lee Byung-hun has been cleared of defamation charges filed against him in March by baseball player-turned-TV personality Kang Byung-kyu.

The Seoul Central Prosecutors' Office ruled Thursday that Lee is "not guilty" of defaming Kang who had claimed he was wrongly accused of his involvement in a feud between the actor and his ex-girlfriend identified by her last name Kwon.

A legal dispute between the former couple had fired up when Kwon lodged a complaint to court saying she was allured into having a sexual relationship with the actor on his false promises of marriage and demanded she be compensated for physical and psychological damage.

Lee too had filed a suit against Kwon as well as Kang, who according to Lee's legal representatives, was behind those who had demanded for money in exchange for exposing details of the actor's personal life.

Prosecutors sided with Lee, indicting Kang in mid-March for defamation and attempted blackmail against the actor. An angered Kang had then countersued Lee for defamation.

"Kang failed to provide detailed testimonies on how Lee marred his reputation and Lee denied the charges through paper so we were not able to find any definite evidence," the prosecutors office explained.

Accordingly, the legal dispute surrounding the two celebrities can be considered concluded.

Kang has also been indicted for his alleged involvement in an assault case on the set of "Iris" -- then starring Lee -- which he visited in mid-December over talk that Chung Tae-won, chief of Taewon Entertainment and producer of the hit show, had spread false rumor that he was behind the feud between Lee and Kwon.

Kang also has a suspended jail term which he received in February for habitually gambling through online gambling sites.

Reporter : Ko Kyoung-seok kave@
Editor : Jessica Kim jesskim@
<ⓒ10Asia All rights reserved>

Police Announce Park Yong-ha Committed Suicide

Chief investigator Kwak Jeong-hee at Gangnam Police Station gives a briefing on singer and actor Park Yong-ha's death on June 30, 2010 in Seoul, South Korea.

Police have officially announced suicide is the cause of singer and actor Park Yong-ha's death. Park was 32.

Chief investigator Kwak Jeong-hee at Gangnam Police Station gave a briefing on Wednesday afternoon, declaring that Park died of suffocation early in the day after hanging himself from the cord of his camcorder's charger that he had hung to the top of his bedpost.

Kwak however, dismissed reports claiming that Park took his life from depression or problems he had related to taking sleeping pills for 14 years. "We were able to confirm that he had recently taken some pills although we do not know if it was after he got home last night. Nevertheless, it is unrelated to the cause of his death," Kwak explained.

Police were also unable to find any indications of financial or health related issues nor discover a memorandum on his recent thoughts or a suicide note.

However, for the past few days Park had confessed to his acquaintances that "both work and life are tough," asking to talk again after he had organized his thoughts.

Also, upon arriving at home past midnight after yesterday after drinking, Park had apologized to his father, close to tears, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I should be the one in pain, not you." Park's father has been diagnosed with late-stage stomach cancer and Park, a devoted son, was in agony over his father's illness.

Kwak added that the actor had taken sleeping pills on several occasions after finding difficulty in falling asleep from having to juggle his business as the CEO of his own agency YONA Entertainment, creating new businesses and pursuing his singing and acting career.

"Based on the testimonies, we are assuming that Park committed suicide on impulse after drinking from stress over his father's illness, his business and entertainment career," Kwak stated.

Park was discovered by his mother at 5:30 a.m. at his house today after he had taken his life. Police presume Park died around 3:00 a.m.

Park, who debuted as an actor in 1994, gained popularity throughout Asia after appearing in "Winter Sonata", a drama that first started the Hallyu craze, alongside top actors Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo.

He also led a successful singing career in Japan where he placed several albums within the top 10 ranks of the Oricon charts and won four consecutive Japan Gold Disc Awards.

Most recently, he had been set to star in the small screen adaptation of legendary Hong Kong pic "Comrades, Almost a Love Story," across actress Yoon Eun-hye.

He was on a brief visit to Korea this week while on a three-month long 16-city tour in Japan starting last week.

Below are excerpts from the Q&A session of the police briefing.

Kim Ha-neul Cancels Japan Schedules Over Park Yong-ha's Death

Korean actress Kim Ha-neul, who has been in Japan since last weekend, will be rushing back to Korea upon hearing of actor Park Yong-ha's sudden death earlier this morning. 

The actress, who held a sold-out fan meeting in Japan over the weekend, had other schedules planned for the week. 

"She decided to cancel the rest of her plans in Japan and rush back," an official at agency J. One Plus Entertainment told Asia Economic Daily over the phone on Wednesday. 

"She was so shocked that she could not say anything. I think his death is harder for her to accept because Park Yong-ha was a bright and cheerful person," the official added.

Kim and Park had starred together in the hit TV series "On Air" (SBS, 2008).

The official added that many fellow actors, including So Ji-sub, are heartbroken over the news of Park, who was found dead in his apartment around 5:30 a.m. He had hanged himself on the cord of his camcorder charger.

Kim will be arriving in Seoul later this afternoon.

Reporter : Park So-yoen muse@
Editor : Lynn Kim lynn2878@
<ⓒ10Asia All rights reserved>

(Photo) Park Yong Ha's Wake Service Attend By Fellow Artist

A sobbing actor So Ji-sub arrives at late actor Park Yong-ha's wake service at Seoul St. Mary's Hospital in South Korea on June 30, 2010. Park was found dead at his home in an apparent suicide.

So and Park, of the same age, were such good friends that they lived in the same apartment. "I'm closest with Song Seung-hun and Park Yong-ha. I seem them almost everyday when I don't have shoots," So had said during an interview for his MBC TV series "Road No. 1."

From left, SS501 Kim Hyung-jun and his younger brother, U-Kiss member Kim Kibum arrive at late actor Park Yong-ha's wake service at Seoul St. Mary's Hospital in South Korea on June 30, 2010.

Singer and actor U-Know Yunho arrives at late actor Park Yong-ha's wake service at Seoul St. Mary's Hospital in South Korea on June 30, 2010.

Park Yong-ha's Devotion To Father Led To Death, Say Sources

Sources close to singer and actor Park Yong-ha, who was found dead this morning in an apparent suicide, have said it may be Park's great filial piety toward his father that led to his death.

According to multiple sources, Park moved in with his father, suffering from late-stage stomach cancer, so he could look after him.

He had even been reconsidering his decision to star in "Love Song," a small-screen remake of legendary Hong Kong pic "Comrades, Almost a Love Story," to spend more time by his father's side, sources said.

The series, also starring actress Yoon Eun-hye, was set to go into shoot around late July and go on air in Korea by the end of the year.

Sources also said Park and his father were like "close friends," with Park taking his father on tour with him to Japan as well as often discussing his career with him -- Park's father was a famed music producer in the 1970s to 1980s and the manager of veteran singer Song Chang-shik.

Hence, being the devoted son he is, Park probably tormented himself over his father's illness and chose to commit suicide, explained the sources.

News of Park's death has stunned fans and the entertainment industry as the celebrity, also a popular figure in Japan after starring in smash-hit series "Winter Sonata" alongside Bae Yong-joong and Choi Ji-woo, had been actively pushing forth his career as well as taking part in volunteer work.

Having led a particularly successful singing career in Japan, placing several albums within the top 10 on the Oricon charts and winning four consecutive Japan Gold Disc Awards, Park had attracted 20,000 fans to a concert marking the fifth year since his debut in the country and was set to go on a three-month long 16-city tour starting last week.

He had also visited the Republic of Chad in Africa over several occasions since last year as a goodwill ambassador of non-profit organization Good Neighbors and had donated money to help build a school under his name, YONA SCHOOL, in the country.

Park was found hanging himself from the cord of his mobile phone charger at 5:30 a.m. in his house. His body has been placed at Seoul St. Mary's Hospital.

Credit Source:

Actor Park Yong-ha Found Dead in Apparent Suicide

Singer and actor Park Yong-ha was found dead at his home today morning after apparently committing suicide, according to a police source. Gangnam Police Station said Park's mother found the 32-year-old celebrity hanging himself by from the cord of his mobile phone charger at around 5:30 a.m. Police have yet to announce the details to Park's death -- they are investigating into the cause behind his suicide based on testimonies by his family. A source close to the actor said Park had been having a hard time coping with his father's illness.

"He had much filial love for his parents. I heard his father, suffering from a chronic disease, was recently moved home from the hospital."

Park's body has been placed at Seoul St. Mary's Hospital.

Park, 32, gained popularity throughout Asia after appearing in "Winter Sonata", a drama that first started the Hallyu craze, alongside top actors Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo. He has also led a successful singing career in Japan where he has placed several albums within the top 10 ranks of the Oricon charts and won four consecutive Japan Gold Disc Awards. Most recently, he had been set to star in the small screen adaptation of legendary Hong Kong pic "Comrades, Almost a Love Story," across actress Yoon Eun-hye. A major Hollywood studio had shown interest in the series which was revving up to go into shoot around late July and air in Korea at the end of the year.

Reporter : Lim Hye-seon
Editor : Jessica Kim
(ⓒ10Asia All rights reserved)

* Can't believe this... We've lost another great actors. I just don't understand why... I just don't think he will end up killing himself...

~R.I.P Park Yong Ha~

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My Thought on Hyun Joong Exclusive Contract With Key East

Finally the questions that fans and netizens waiting for have been revealed and many feel betrayed by leader KHJ for his decision to leave DSP Media and sign with Key East. 

I've read many comments regarding KHJ decision. So many questions pop-up when the news came out. As an entertainer I really think he make a good decision... 

Looking at fans point of view... we will only see what we really want to see. We would love it if KHJ stay with his former company and there are several reasons for that. As a fan there is a certain times we want to believe that Idol will always be an Idol, they won't get old, they won't change, they will always be smiling, they will always be together, will have this loyalty, friendship and brotherhood feeling towards other members and so on. 

But looking at KHJ point of view, as an entertainer, as an individual person, as a man who works to gain something and have so many dreams... If stay means he have to retain himself from achieving his dreams and gains, than leaving is better than stay. 

I should say KHJ is a wise man, he knows what he wants and he knows what to achieve. I believe he think and check the company background before decided to sign the contract. Key East is one of the most profit companies and to be part of a profit making company is what every person needed. 

As for SS501 future ... I believe KHJ make a great deal with Key East regarding this. Whatever happens to SS501, will he be part of SS501? Will he continue his activities as SS501? This is not for him to answer. It was a decision between DSP & Key East. Without their approval there is nothing KHJ could do. And of coz netizens and fans voice... 

So to support him all the way or point your fingers and blaming him for a decision he made for himself it's all up to you. As for me, I believe in him... I believe he will show us his different colors and talents within the new agency.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Summer's Desire

This is another Taiwanese drama that I’m hooked to. Sometimes I wish I just can skip it haha just because I don't want to get attached to it. But the problem is I've already trapped and seems like not watching it will make me even worse... so I stick to being attached to it.

Just like Autumn's Concerto I recommended you to watch this. Reasons... hmmm good story line, good actors, good songs and I think I mean I really think the ending will be something unpredictable (hope so... coz I'm tired with that kind of drama but still watching them anyway ^^). 

What make this drama even interesting is, the way they describe each of their relationship. The love, the hate, the misunderstanding and the confusion between the characters is just too perfect to make you sit, wait and keep guessing. Each episode gave you all those emotion you're looking for, be it suspense, anger or passion... 

My favorite character in this drama is of coz Xiao Mo & Ou Chen. When everyone seems to root for Luo Xi I can't help but love Ou Chen more. Of coz it's hard to decide when Luo Xi character have all the charm that make every girl melt but still Ou Chen character make you want to know him more, make you want to understand him more, make you think you can handle him. Well of coz this is just my opinion, if you root for Luo Xi just do it I'm not trying to make you accept what I thought coz that's just a thought of mine... ^^

I wish I can do the recap hahaha... but I'm a busy person... this won't work when I'm too busy... besides none of my recap done yet. I'm trying to finish the rest that I've started first... I'll recap this but just need more time.

Synopsis & Cast

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Wonder Girls' Sun Father's Wake Service

After the passing of SunYe’s father on the 24th of June, the leader is all but alone in the mourning of her father. Longtime friends of the always-smiling lady showed up to the funeral to support her during this tough time.

While promoting with the Wonder Girls in Singapore, SunYe got news of her father’s critical condition in the hospital. Taking the first flight to South Korea on the dawn of the 22nd, SunYe was able to watch over her father before he passed away.

SunYe, who was raised by her grandparents because of her father’s condition had recently bought an apartment late last year for the two of them to live comfortably. “I want do to all I can to allow my grandmother to enjoy the rest of her life by using what she wants, buying whatever she wants.” SunYe stated previously.

A spokesperson from JYP Entertainment released a statement regarding SunYe’s condition:
Because of SunYe’s relationship with her father, she is having a hard time. She is physically exhausted from crying so much. SunYe is enduring this sadness in a tranquil manner. She is trying her best to smile towards those who came to the funeral home.
Arriving first to the service was SunYe’s best friend, 2AM’s Jokwon. Also showing up in support were the following: Wonder Girls’ Sun Mi, Super Junior’s Kim Heechul and DongHae, Park KyungLim and her husband, and Park ShinHye. The other four Wonder Girls members are reported to be flying in and will join SunYe in the three day memorial service for her father. Also rumored to make an appearance is 2PM’s ex-leader, Jaebeom, who is currently in South Korea.

Wonder Girls member Sun at her father's wake service at Seoul Asan Hospital in Seoul, Korea on June 24, 2010. Her father passed away due to a chronic illness early Thursday morning. 

Q&A with MBLAQ By 10Asia

These days, making a debut as an idol group in Korea is similar to a turtle egg that has been hatched on the beach. The moment the baby turtle breaks out of the egg shell and enters the ocean, he is guaranteed an infinite amount of freedom but a considerable number of them are put into a life or death crisis during the short time they head out to the ocean. Likewise, for idol group singers, the toughest and the most dangerous time in their careers is after they have made their debut and are trying to settle into their own place in the music industry. Most idol groups do not succeed in getting the public's attention and disappear from the spotlight right after their debut. Those who survived the phase come to life again through numerous stage performances and variety show appearances. It is only after people start recognizing them and gain a visible amount of fandom that the idol group members can get what they want, little by little. The members of MBLAQ are little warriors who battled through such dangerous survival game. MBLAQ, who caused a stir for being Rain's first idol group creation at the time of their debut, are gradually building up their own identity after going through many trials and errors and making as many accomplishments. These days, one can easily see them in any of Korea's variety shows. And not too long ago, they took the No. 1 spot on Mnet music show "M! Countdown." 10Asia met with the boys who just finished preparing for their dive into the ocean and talked about what they are currently up to.

10: Have you been watching the World Cup games? 
Joon: Yes. I've been watching the highlights. (laugh)

10: Why? Because you are busy? 
Joon: Yes. We are really busy. I used to want to be an actor so before I debuted, I knew what movies were playing in theaters. But these days I have no idea what's playing. 

10: You are pretty much cut off from the world if you don't have time to watch the World Cup. (laugh) 
Mir: It's the World Cup! (laugh)
G.O.: I think that is why we are living a pure life. (laugh) Like how guys in the countryside would be living. When I occasionally get free time and meet with other singers, I think to myself, "Ah, I am a very pure-living person." (laugh)
Joon: That is really, really, really true. 

10: G.O., you even said on television that you went out with twenty girls before you debuted. (laugh) 
G.O.: Whew, these days I feel like all that has been swiped clean and I have returned to a blank state. (laugh) Whatever you do, you feel bored if you do too much of it and you need a bigger stimulation. We have been living a secluded life for several years so I feel like when we do get the free time, we would have so much to do. And that makes me happy. 

10: I heard that Mir sold a cow to go on a date. (laugh) 
Mir: Yes, I am a liberal person... Haha. I think I've done pretty much everything in life.

10: The song "Y" reached No.1 on music show "M! Countdown." Did you have a change of heart after making No.1? (laugh) Didn't you have a celebration party or something afterwards? 
Mir: We just rehearsed after the show, you know.

10: So you didn't have a change of heart. (laugh) 
Seung Ho: My mental attitude did change a little. I feel more responsibility and I have ideas about what kind of music we should do next. 
Cheon Dung: I just cried that night and forgot about it. Forgot about claiming No.1. I plan to keep forgetting about it if we make No.1 again in the future. 

10: Seung Ho cried a little when you took No.1 for the first time on "M! Countdown." As the group's leader, perhaps you felt more emotional than others? 
Seung Ho: I didn't think that I would cry. But my paternal grandfather passed away before we took No.1 and I would suddenly break down after saying a few words. If he had been healthy enough to be here for just two more weeks, he could heard our new song... So when I stood there making several comments, all the past memories really flashed through my head like pictures. I was very sad because I remembered my grandfather. 
Mir: (imitates Seung Ho crying) Ugh- ugh- 
Cheon Dung: He cried his heart away in tears.
Joon: I left mine in Sangam-dong [where the Mnet studio is located.]. 
G.O.: You know how they show the record sales and the judges' stats when they announce No.1? At that moment, you already start drawing out you emotions and strike a cool pose and...
Cheon Dung: I was standing next to him and he was already feeling emotional before that.. 
Mir: Everyone gasped for about three to five seconds and then started crying, but I cried the second they yelled "MBLAQ!" It was very embarrassing. 

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Lee Byung-Hun's Ex-girlfriend Resumes Lawsuit Last Minute

Hallyu star Lee Byung-hun's former girlfriend has requested for a new date of pleading to be set last minute, resuming a half-year long legal battle against the actor which was thought to have been withdrawn.

"In the afternoon, we received a mail from her containing an application for a third trial regarding the compensation suit she filed against Lee," Judge Jung Hyun-myung at the Seoul Central Prosecutors' Office said late on Monday, adding a new date of hearing would be set the following day.

The court had decided earlier in the day to conclude that a civil suit that Lee's ex-girlfriend, a Canadian-American woman identified only by her last name Kwon, had been withdrawn with her not returning to Korea since leaving for Canada after suing the actor on December 8.

Jaebum Creates New Paradigm, Will He Become The Leader of a New Set of Rising Stars?

You are not allowed to add yourself to the credits nor edit the credits.

고개를 숙인 채 아무도 모르게 쫓기듯 출국 했던 아이돌 그룹의 전 리더는 팬 천여 명의 환영을 받으며 당당하게 입국을 했습니다.마치 한 편의 드라마를 보는 듯한 이 상황은 오늘 입국한 재범의 모습이었습니다.

새로운 신화는 만들어질까?

1. 미운 오리새끼 날다

재범 사태는 지금까지 유래를 찾아볼 수 없는 특별함이었습니다.시작은 너무나 익숙하고 결코 용서받을 수 없는 애국심 논란의 중심에서 쫓겨나야만 했습니다.군대와 애국심은 도저히 용서 받지 못할 범죄 아닌 범죄였지요. 그렇게 자신의 부모가 살고 있는 시애틀로 쫓겨 간 그는 언론에서 사라졌지만 소속사의 활발한 재범 마케팅은 의외의 성과로 돌아왔습니다.

당사자는 존재하지 않지만 그의 영향력은 지대했고 남겨진 2PM 멤버들의 리더에 대한 사랑과 우정은 재범을 잊지 못하는 많은 팬들에게 감동으로 다가오기도 했습니다.논란이 되었던 문장은 언론에서 알려진 것과는 달리 과장되고 오해였다는 사실이 밝혀지며 재범 복귀는 팬들 사이에서는 손꼽아 기다리는 최고의 선물이 되었습니다.

▲ 문제는 많은 팬들의 기대와 바람과는 상관없이 JYP에서는 재범을 버리는 카드로 사용했지요. 연예인이 소속사와 관계를 청산하고 새로운 시작을 하는 것은 일상이기에 특별할 것은 없습니다.하지만 JYP가 계약을 해지하는 사유로 내놓은 문제는 경악스러운 내용이 아닐 수 없었지요.

공개할 수 없는 개인적인 문제이지만 알려지면 상당한 파문이 있을 수 있기에 더 이상은 함께 할 수 없다는 이해 당사자가 아니면 알 수도 없는 모호한 이야기로 재범은 돌이키기 힘든 파렴치범이 되었습니다.그런 파렴치한 아이돌을 마지막까지 품으려 했던 자신들은 대단한 소속사라는 이미지를 심는데 열중했습니다.

모든 것이 시나리오대로 된다면 좋았을 텐데 바로 그 순간부터 대한민국 연예계에서는 그동안 볼 수 없었던 일들이 일어나기 시작했지요. 전 소속사에 의해 절대 국내 연예계에 복귀할 수 없는 낙인을 찍힌 채 내몰린 재범은 여전한 팬들의 사랑과 함께 승승장구하기 시작했습니다.

마치 때를 만난 물고기처럼 유튜브를 통해 자신의 신상을 알리는 과정에서 보여준 여전한 스타성과 상품성은 이내 많은 매니지먼트사의 주목을 받을 수밖에는 없었습니다.이런 움직임은 암묵적인 동의와 국내 시장을 고민해야 하는 국내 매니지먼트와는 달리 미국에서 적극적으로 행해지기 시작했지요.

유튜브를 통해 불렀던 비오비의 <낫싱 온 유>는 엄청난 조회 수로 많은 이들을 놀라게 했습니다.팬들을 위한 서비스 개념의 노래가 커다란 반항을 일으키며, <하이프네이션>에 주인공으로 확정되며 화려한 도약은 시작되었습니다.박진영이 그렇게 존경한다는 미국 최고의 뮤지션들과의 음반 작업이 진행 중인 그의 모습은 상상할 수 없는 성과로 이어졌습니다.

재범으로 인해 국내 음반을 발매하기도 전부터 인기몰이를 한 <낫 싱 온 유>는 정식 발매와 함께 재범 효과를 톡톡히 보며 국내 유통사를 행복하게 만들었지요. 이런 성공으로 최근엔 비오비의 원곡에 정식 피처링으로 참여해 '랩 비오비, 노래 재범'으로 새롭게 레코딩을 하기도 했습니다.

국내 팬들을 위한 서비스 개념이 높지만 국내에서 반응이 좋으면 세계 시장에도 내놓을 예정이라고 하니 재범의 상품성에 대한 기대는 무척 높다고 볼 수 있겠지요. <하프네이션>이 얼마나 큰 반항을 일으킬 영화인지는 알 수 없지만 최소한 이 영화가 박스오피스 톱10에 진입만 한다면 그의 성공은 상상 이상이 될 가능성이 높아 보입니다.

2월 재범 사태 이후 명확하게 달라진 것은 쫓겨난 재범은 승승장구하며 새로운 가치를 찾아가고 있고, 쫓아낸 소속사는 그들의 기대와는 달리 충성스러운 팬들을 안티로 돌리며 후폭풍을 맞으며 지지부진한 모습만을 보이고 있을 뿐입니다.

이런 상황에서 그의 입국은 새로운 이슈가 될 수밖에는 없습니다.2월 파렴치한 사생활 언급으로 연예계에서 영구 퇴출당한 전직 아이돌이 이런 식으로 다시 복귀 할 것이라고 상상할 수는 없었습니다.물론 그의 팬들 말고는 말이지요.

2. 새로운 패러다임의 좋은 예

재범이 다시 화려하게 부활하는 과정을 보면 시대가 확연하게 변하고 있음을 알 수 있습니다.유튜브를 통해 스타가 되는 사례는 미국에서는 쉽게 볼 수 있었습니다.'아메리칸 아이돌'이 슈퍼스타를 만들어내는 새로운 도구로 사용되어지듯 과거와 같은 방식의 매니지먼트가 아닌 직접 팬들과 호흡하며 스타가 되어가는 방식은 현 시점 가장 진보한 형식으로 자리잡아가고 있습니다.

여기에 가장 쉽게 접근할 수 있지만 그만큼 치열할 수밖에 없는 유튜브로 상징되는 개인 미디어 공간은 새로운 스타 탄생을 알리는 확실한 도구로 자리 잡았습니다.영국의 일본 애니메이션을 좋아하던 어린 소녀는 자신이 좋아하는 곡과 안무를 유튜브에 올려 일약 스타덤에 오르며 연예계에 진출하기도 했고, 노래는 잘하지만 자신을 알릴 수 있는 방법이 없었던 많은 신인들은 유튜브를 통해 자신의 실력을 일반인들에게 검증받고 이를 통해 자연스럽게 메인스트림에 올라서는 스타 탄생 과정의 새로운 패러다임을 만들어가는 과정입니다.

재범 역시 이들처럼 유튜브라는 오픈된 공간을 통해 자신의 일거수일투족을 노출하며 자신의 재능과 끼를 보여줌으로서 여전한 스타성을 확인할 수 있게 해주었습니다.그들과 다른 점이라면 재범은 이미 수많은 열성팬들을 거느리고 있다는 것이지요.

그런 스타성을 유튜브는 다시 한 번 강하게 확인시켜주었고 전 소속사로 인해 영구퇴출 당한 연예계에 화려한 입성을 할 수 있게 만들었습니다.이 상황에서 언급하지 않을 수 없는 문제는 사생활 관련 문제일 것입니다.이미 입국과 관련해 많은 이들은 이 부분에 대한 사과와 설명이 있어야 한다는 의견들을 내놓고 있습니다.

여전히 의문이고 많은 이들이 사실 관계에 대해 밝히라고 하지만 입국 전 팬들에게 남긴 글에 9월 마이스페이스 논란에 대해서는 사과와 함께 오해가 있을 수밖에 없었던 전후 사정에 대한 자신의 생각들을 알렸지만, JYP가 치명적으로 내놓은 사생활 논란에 대해서는 아무런 언급도 없었습니다.

그전에 사생활 논란에 대해 억울함을 토로하고 영화 촬영이 끝나면 부모님과 함께 기자회견이라도 할 생각까지 했다는 것으로 봐서 전 소속사에서 터무니없는 영구 탈퇴용으로 만들어낸 사건일 가능성도 높아 보입니다.정말 돌이킬 수도 없고 함께 할 수도 없는 파렴치한 일이라면 아무리 뻔뻔한 사람(사이코패스가 아니라면)이라도 이런 식으로 당당함을 보일 수는 없겠지요.

그가 남긴 홈페이지 글에서도 자신이 당당하고 이를 믿어주는 팬들이 있다면 자신은 행복하다고 말하는 것으로 재범의 입장 정리는 되었다고 봐야 할 것입니다.통상적으로 소속사와 관계를 정리하며, 그들은 비밀유지를 무기한 혹은 일정 기간 동안 언론에 밝혀서는 안 되는 조항들을 만들어 놓고는 합니다.

이런 상황에서 위약금이 어느 정도인지는 알 수 없지만 억울함을 대놓고 토로할 수 없는 것은 그가 '을'의 관계에 있기 때문이지요. 그에게 사생활 문제를 밝히라고 하지 말고 '갑'의 입장인 전 소속사 JYP에게 질문을 던져야 할 것입니다.도저히 받아들일 수 없는 사생활 문제가 무엇인지와 그런 문제가 있음에도 불구하고 당당하게 활동을 시작한 재범을 어떻게 생각하는지에 대한 입장은 재범이 아닌 JYP에 해야 할 질문입니다.

아르바이트라도 해본 경험이 있는 이들이라면 '갑과 을'의 관계가 얼마나 무서운 존재인지 알 수 있습니다.그런 상황을 무시하며 을에게 갑의 문제를 이야기하라는 것은 궁지에 몰아놓는 것과 다름없어 보입니다.정말 그 사안이 진실이고 문제라고 생각한다면 JYP에 문의를 하고 그들이 당당하게 문제와 관련된 내용을 밝힐 수 있도록 해야 할 것입니다.

재범의 입국과 함께 일고 있는 화살의 대상은 잘못되어 있습니다.재범이 아닌 JYP에게 돌려져야 할 화살을 여전히 재범에게 쏘아대기 여념이 없는 이들은 만만한 대상이 아닌 견고하게 방어를 치고 있는 JYP에 화살을 쏘는 것이 정도가 될 것입니다.

재범이 전 소속사가 이야기하듯 파렴치한 일을 저지른 사실이 있다면 이는 사과를 하고 용서를 받아야만 할 것입니다.무조건적인 보호가 아닌 사실 관계가 명확하다면 이는 그저 넘겨서는 안 되는 심각한 문제가 될 수 있기 때문이지요.

▲ 거대한 매니지먼트가 아니어도 스타가 될 수 있는 세상은 왔습니다.국내에서도 '슈퍼스타 K'라는 케이블 프로그램을 통해 가수를 탄생시켰습니다.두 번째 스타를 만들기 위한 그들의 방송에는 수백만의 예비 스타들이 참여했고 이런 열기는 더욱 거세질 수밖에는 없을 것입니다.

다양한 소셜 네트워크를 통해 자신의 재능을 선보이고 필요한 이들이 그 재능을 사들이는 과정은 우리가 그전에는 발견할 수 없었던 새로운 형식입니다.이런 새로운 패러다임은 연예산업뿐 아니라 전 분야로 확대되며 과거의 형식이 아닌 새로운 틀을 제시해주고 있습니다.

재범의 경우는 특별한 사안이기는 하지만 영구 탈퇴라는 최악의 상황에서 오뚝이처럼 일어서 새로운 가치를 만들어내는 과정은 새로운 패러다임의 좋은 예로 이해될 수 있을 것입니다.고전적인 갑과 을의 존재가 아닌 직접 팬과 함께 하며 자신의 꿈을 만들어가는 과정은 다른 많은 스타들에게도 커다란 힘으로 작용할 수 있을 듯합니다.

국내 연예산업에서 일방적인 관계가 아닌, 상호소통의 관계로 변해가는 과정은 무척이나 흥미롭습니다.막대한 자금을 통해 만들어내는 스타가 아닌 서로의 이해관계가 맞아 떨어지는 스타와 팬의 관계는 그동안 경험하지 못했던 새로운 관계의 형성입니다.그리고 이런 사례가 어떤 성공을 가져오느냐에 따라 국내 연예 산업의 패러다임도 변할 수 있기에 재범의 행보는 무척이나 흥미롭습니다.

과연 그는 새로움을 선도하는 스타가 되어줄까요? 아니면 잠깐의 바람처럼 불다 그치며 거대 매니지먼트의 돈놀이만이 스타를 만드는 가장 좋은 시스템임을 증명하게 될까요? 참 흥미로운 상황이 아닐 수 없습니다.


Monday, June 21, 2010


Hallyu star Lee Min-ho celebrated his upcoming birthday with his fans over the weekend, hosting a fan meeting for some 4,500 fans who turned up from Korea, Japan and China to see the actor. 

The actor entertained his local and foreign guests in various ways at the event titled "2010 The Special Day with Minoz" held at Seoul's Kyung Hee University on June 20.

The fan meeting started with a showing of video message sent in by the fans, followed by a musical performance by Korean pop group See Ya, who performed their hits "His Voice" and "My Heart Is Heavy With Emotions," which was featured on the soundtrack for Lee's TV series "Personal Taste."

Lee too displayed his vocal chops, singing the song "Falling Slowly" from the Irish indie hit film "Once" (2006) which he had been practicing for the fan meeting. 

"While I was rehearsing the song, I realized that singing isn't for everyone," said the actor. "I am not talented enough [to release an album] but I would like to take part in a soundtrack if the opportunity came by."

He added that he is a fan of the film "Once" and thinks "Falling Slowly" suits his voice. 

Lee also carried on a friendly conversation with comedian Yoon Hyung-bin, who served as the emcee for the fan meeting. 

The event featured several musical guests including boy band 2AM, female singer Younha and Taiwanese entertainer Joseph Cheng, who is considered the "Rain of Taiwan." Lee and Cheng exchanged gifts and promised to maintain their friendship in the future. 

Below is a Q&A session held with Lee Min-ho.

(Photo) "2010 The Special Day with Minoz"

Actor Lee Min-ho poses at a photo session of a press conference for his fan meeting "2010 The Special Day with Minoz" held at Kyung Hee University's Grand Peace Palace in Seoul, South Korea on June 20, 2010.

SS501 and CNBLUE Shine on TV Music Programs

K-pop idols SS501 and CNBLUE celebrated wins on televised music programs over the weekend. 

SS501 scored their second win for "Love Ya" on KBS' weekend program "Music Bank" although the boys did not perform on the show.

Meanwhile, CNBLUE grabbed their first win on SBS' Sunday music show "Inkigayo" with their single "Love," beating out three-week winner Super Junior. 

Other contenders on both shows included December, 4minute, Super Junior, MBLAQ and f(x). 

SS501 made their debut with the single "Warning" in 2005, releasing numerous albums as a group and pursuing individual careers in acting and appearing in variety shows. 

They have been enjoying their return to the music scene with their latest album "DESTINATION," which was released on May 24. 

CNBLUE released two singles in Japan before breaking into the local music scene with their mini-album titled "Bluetory." Recently, they have been promoting their second mini-album "BLUE LOVE" featuring the title track "LOVE." 

The group will hold their first concert in Korea on July 31 titled "Listen to the CNBLUE." 

Reporter : Lucia Hong luciahong@
Editor : Jessica Kim jesskim@
<ⓒ10Asia All rights reserved&gt;

Lee Byung-hun Lawsuit Withdrawn


Top Korean actor Lee Byung-hun's legal woes surrounding a former girlfriend have been settled, his agency said on Monday.

According to BH Entertainment, the Seoul Central Prosecutors' Office concluded that a civil suit, filed against Lee last December by a Canadian-American woman identified only by her last name Kwon, has been withdrawn.

The court made its decision based on its judgement that Kwon no longer intends to take legal action -- Kwon has not returned to Korea since leaving for Canada after suing the actor on December 8.

Her absence from the country has led to her missing two dates for pleading, on April 22 and May 20, and she has not requested for a new date of pleading thereafter. The court considers a case withdrawn if a request is not made within a month of a no-show.

Hence Lee has been freed from the six-month long legal turmoil -- according to law, all records relating to a case are scrapped when a civil suit is withdrawn.

A legal dispute between the two had fired up when Kwon lodged a complaint saying she was allured into having a sexual relationship with the actor on his false promises of marriage, asking to be paid 100 million won in physical and psychological damages.

Lee took counter legal action, suing the woman for libel and asking the police to investigate multiple threats that he had received regarding his relationship with Kwon. 

Kwon had also reported to authorities that the actor had taken part in illegal baccarat gambling overseas but the court cleared the actor of the charges, saying there is no evidence Lee had been involved in habitual gambling overseas.

The court also indicted former baseball player turned TV personality Kang Byung-kyu for his alleged involvement in an assault case on the set of "Iris" -- then starring Lee -- which he visited in mid-December over talk that Chung Tae-won, chief of Taewon Entertainment and producer of the hit show, had spread false rumor that he was behind the feud between Lee and Kwon.

Kang has been standing trial ever since while also countersuing Lee who had charged him with defamation. This case too has been in a deadlock however, due to Kwon's absence from the country.

Lee, 39, has long been considered one of the most successful actors in Korea, appearing in numerous Korean dramas and films, including TV series "All In" and director Park Chan-wook's 2000 film "Joint Security Area". 

He also debuted in Hollywood last year with a supporting role in "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra" alongside Channing Tatum and Sienna Miller and starred in action thriller "I Come with the Rain" with Josh Hartnett and Takuya Kimura which also showed in theaters in 2009.

Reporter : Lim Hye-seon lhsro@
Editor : Jessica Kim jesskim@
<ⓒ10Asia All rights reserved>