Bidding farewell to 2011 2011/12/23, Source,
Konjiam Resort in Gwangju, Gyeonggi Province, will celebrate the New Year with firework displays on Dec. 31. / Courtesy of Konjiam Resort
By Lee Hyo-won, Kwon Mee-yoo and Noh Hyun-ji The countdown for 2012 is nearing, but there is still time to decide how to spend the last hours of 2011. Concert halls, theme parks and eateries are offering ways to welcome in the New Year with a little pizzazz. Riding a bell Every New Year's Eve, thousands of people fill the streets of Jongno, northern Seoul, to hear the ringing of the Boshingak Bell marking the start of another year. However, standing outside in the cold for hours in the crowd to hear the bell is a physically demanding endeavor,...More
[INTERVIEW] Big Bang's G-Dragon and T.O.P unit - Part 2 2011/01/04, Source, G-Dragon and T.O.P (Choi Seung-hyeon) [Lee Jin-hyuk, Chae Ki-won/10Asia]10: I think the other units would've been interesting as well. G-Dragon: But it turned out that they're all busy with their individual activities and appearing on variety shows. (laugh) Only T.O.P (Choi Seung-hyeon) and I had some time to kill so we ended up working together and producing the most songs together. (laugh) But our other projects were getting pushed back so Yang suggested we try various experiments for Big Bang's music in the mean time and then have Big Bang's album itself contain songs with all five of our voices instead of in units. So that's why Seungri's song, which was actually supposed to go into Big Bang's album, will be released in his upcoming solo album and we're releasing our songs separately as well. 10: So it seems like your album came about by coincidence but how did you two actually make music together? It seems like you two had entirely different interpretations of "BABY GOOD NIGHT"? G-Dragon: He has changed his name to e.knock now but that song was made when I was over at Kush's house. I was just hanging out with him when he played the arrangement for "BABY GOOD NIGHT" he'd made, asking me what I thought about it,...More
Actor Lee Jeong-jin's Movie Picks 2010/11/18, Source, Lee Jeong-jin [10Asia]
"I am actor Lee Jeong-jin and I'm still best-known for 2004 film 'Once Upon A Time In Highschool'", said the actor at the press conference for his new film "Troubleshooter" that premiered in September. It is not that he did not star in other films during the past six years. In film "Mapado" (2005) he evoked laughter by appearing in embarrassing 'mompe' pants (loose-fitting attire usually worn by old woman) and practically betraying his former career as a model and in MBC drama "9 End 2 Outs" (2007)" he offered his viewers with a different form of fun by playing a character full of twists called Byun Hyung-tae who looks like a perfectly charming guy only on the surface. And although he acted like a loser in the drama, writing down all the misdeeds his girlfriend makes and even fighting with her physically if necessary, he was still able to win women's hearts by being there when his girlfriend needed him the most. Nonetheless, it is the 2004 film "Once Upon A Time In Highschool" that stands as the most important character to refer to when describing actor Lee. Nothing could stop his character, the charismatic Woo-sik, who could scare off his opponents with just a few words. And he was the same when he had to leave school after losing in a fight against his rival or falling in love, knowing no hesitation. Just like Eun-joo (Han Ga-in) had chosen Woo-sik over the gentle, exemplary student Hyun-soo (kwon Sang-woo), it is this captivating aura that made Lee unforgettable to the audience,...More
Kim Ha-neul says "first time receiving such a moving script" 2010/05/13, Source,
Cast members of MBC's "Road No. 1" left to right: Yoon Kye-sang, Kim Ha-neul and So Ji-sub [MBC]
'The promise of friendship and love that is fulfilled 60 years later' is the main copy for upcoming MBC series "Road No. 1" which is set to air on June 23. The drama shows the the turbulent times of the Korean War, but its story revolves around the three main characters Jang-woo (played by So Ji-sub), Soo-yeon (played by Kim Ha-neul) and Tae-ho (played by Yoon Kye-sang) who experience love and friendship during the chaos of the war. The audience is probably expecting more from the three actors since the star-studded cast is already bringing enough attention to the drama. Will the stars be able to pull off the roles of ordinary characters Jang-woo, So-yeon and Tae-ho who are faced with the war? Below are the excerpts from the press conference attended by actors So Ji-sub, Kim Ha-neul and Yoon Kye-sang. 10: The faces of the male actors have gotten very tanned -- it shows that you were faced with many hardships. Both of you look rugged as well. So Ji-sub (So): I have gotten very tanned and also have heavy makeup on. I lost three kilograms and some of my muscles too because unlike in other productions, I can't have the image of being in shape. Yoon Kye-sang (Yoon): I play the role of an elite military officer, who among his troops, gets hit by the most grenades because he has to fail in order for Jang-woo to rise in the ranks. There are many scenes where I fall and I think a lot of them will turn out well from seeing how rough my hands have gotten,...More
[INTERVIEW] Actor Oh Ji-ho - Part 1 2010/04/09, Source,
Korean actor Oh Ji-ho [photographed by Lee Jin-Hyeok/10Asia] Oh Ji-ho says "I learned how to really use my eyes" on 'The Slave Hunters' The time has come finally to bid farewell to KBS TV series "The Slave Hunters". What kind of ending will come for this extraordinary drama -- which showed off fantastic imagery from the start, breaking records in viewership rating with terrifying speed and at the same time carried a fairly weighty political discussion? One does not know but one thing is for sure; that the key belongs to character Song Tae-ha (played by Oh Ji-ho), who had lived his life being loyal to his master but now dreams of making a better world. Now that even one of his enemies Dae-gil (played by Jang Hyeok) has decided to help him, what kind of dream does he have and how will he achieve them? And what has Oh Ji-do dreamed and achieved during the eight months that he spent portraying Song Tae-ha and unveiled his new possibilities? In a joint press interview held on March 24 -- the day before the final episode of "The Slave Hunters" --- the actor talked about the past eight months he spent working on the show,...More
[INTERVIEW] Actor Oh Ji-ho - Part 2 2010/04/09, Source,
Korean actor Oh Ji-ho [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]
Q: Do you think such change means that Tae-ha is growing up? Oh: I think so. Tae-ha is someone who refuses to accept that Hye-won is the slave Eon-nyeon, and so when you tell him that Dae-gil is the same as any other nobleman, I think he must have thought about that himself. Tae-ha believes that he is carrying out his duty to save the people but he realizes that people actually hate aristocrats. And I think that is when he decides to be someone who mediates that gap and matures. Q: I can understand that meeting Hye-won was what motivated him to change. But the much talked-about kissing scene on Jeju island seemed a bit out of context. Oh: It must have seemed somewhat like that since people are saying so, but I think it also signifies that Tae-ha changed. If he was just a loyal solider, he would have just taken the young royal king with him in that situation. But as someone who lost his wife and child and feeling how could someone who couldn't save his family save a country, he had just been doing his best in protecting Hye-won,...More
Kim So-yeon says "Ma Hye-ri and I are very similar" - Part 1 2010/04/08, Source,
The cast of TV series "Prosecutor Princess": (from left) actors Park Si-hoo, Choi Song-hyeon, Kim So-yeon and Han Jeong-soo [SBS]
Press conference for SBS TV series "Prosecutor Princess" On the first week of the battle amongst Wednesday andThursday evening dramas by three broadcasting networks, SBS TV series "Prosecutor Princess" came in third in viewership ratings. But the figures are not the absolute criterion of how entertaining or well-made the show is and the transformation Kim So-yeon has made -- who played a female warrior in KBS' "IRIS" and came back as an innocent prosecutor Ma Hye-ri who has no clue about working in an organization -- is a success. The comedic acting by colorful supporting characters also catches the viewers' eyes,...More
Kim So-yeon says "Ma Hye-ri and I are very similar" - Part 2 2010/04/08, Source, Press conference for SBS TV series "Prosecutor Princess"
Actress Choi Song-hyeon [SBS]
Q: Your acting seems to have improved a lot in this drama. Are you still stressed about being called the actress who used to an anchorwoman? Choi Song-hyeon: I think some people still feel awkward and uncomfortable about seeing Choi Song-hyeon as an actress. People feel good when others tell them that they are great at what they want to do and what they are doing, and get upset when they hear they are doing a bad job. But I think that even telling someone they are bad at something comes out of their attention and affection for them. Personally, it's very flattering to receive attention but I'm worried that I might cause trouble for the director, staff and senior actors who are working hard to make a good show. But like they say, even someone who you don't like will grow on you when you keep seeing them, so I think if viewers keep seeing me on the screen as they tune in to watch the show, they might feel less uncomfortable about me,...More
Rain says "Love Song" based on own experience - Part 1 2010/04/06, Source,
Korean singer Rain [Chae Ki-won/10Asia]
Asian pop sensation Rain says the inspiration for his latest single "Love Song" came from his own experiences. The artist made the remark during a press conference for his new album "BACK TO THE BASICS" held Monday at the KT Building in Youido. He is set to return to the Korean music scene with his special album due out April 7 featuring the title track "Love Song", the first in two years since releasing his last studio album "Rainism" in 2008. Below are excerpts from his press conference. 10: Your first song off the new album is a ballad instead of a dance song and you have taken on an androgynous image which is different from your previous images. What was the reason behind this attempt? Rain: I want to show a definite change because it has been eight years since I made my debut. I had recorded "Love Song" when "Rainism" was unveiled. With "Song" I took out the embellishments and released something light. I was looking to perform an authentic ballad. After promoting “Song,” I am thinking of promoting "Hip Song", a dance track from the album. My androgynous image is a ground breaking attempt. I wanted to stimulate the listeners through my eyebrows, vest, leather pants and hat which are impossible to match with the bling bling music. Releasing the music will be the first round and I want to show new things through my performances on stage. I want to put on a performance that will satisfy the audience's ears and eyes,...More
Rain says "Love Song" based on own experience - Part 2 2010/04/06, Source,
Korean singer and actor Rain at the press conference at the KT Building [Chae Ki-won/10Asia]
10: How long will you promote your album and do you have any plans on appearing in variety programs? Rain: Since my debut I had received lots of love through variety programs. I want to show everything that I can while promoting this album because I intended on going back to my original resolution and work hard on this release. As long as the audience don't feel uncomfortable about it, I want to be in as many variety shows as possible. I plan on promoting my album for about two months before I begin shooting a drama and movie. I have an upcoming tour in Japan so I will be visiting several cities in the country but I think I'll be able to manage both by going back and forth till early May,...More
Press conference for film "Runaway from Home" 2010/04/02, Source,
From left to right: Director Lee Ha, actors Yang Ik-joon, Ji Jin-hee and Lee Moon-sik from the press conference "Runaway from Home" [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]
Three men have come together to find the wife who left home. The three men consisting of Sung-hee (played by Ji Jin-hee) who on the outside looks fine but is actually immature, Dong-min (played by Yang Ik-joon) who has been preparing to be a director for ten years and Yoo-kwak (played by Lee Moon-sik) a short homme fatale. During a live broadcast Sung-hee announced he wanted a divorce but his wife Young-shim (played by Kim Gyoo-ri-I) filed for divorce before him, so the mortified Sung-hee brings Dong-min to search for his wife. The men begin to follow the traces left by Young-shim but as they continue she becomes shadier. They find out that Young-shim tried to commit suicide, a pyramid seller and on top of all that her older brother Yoo-Kwak, who Sung-hee's never heard for the past three years, appear,...More
Son Ye-jin says relieved Lee Min-ho "not young-looking" (1) 2010/03/26, Source, For Son Ye-jin, it is a drama where she will play the most comical character since her debut. For Lee Min-ho, it is a drama he chose after long consideration for his comeback role since KBS TV series "Boys over Flowers". For Kim Ji-seok-I, it is the last drama he will take on before entering the Korean military. For Wang Ji-hye, it is her first step toward creating a new image and for Im Seulong, it is his debut as an adult actor. Will the MBC series [tentatively titled] "Personal Taste" be remembered as a special drama that fulfills the taste of the public, just as it is turning into a special drama for the actors, each for his personal reasons? Below are excerpts from the Q&A session at the press conference for "Personal Taste".
Korean actress Son Ye-jin [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]
Q: How did you choose to do "Personal Taste"? Son Ye-jin (Son): Up till now, I have played characters that were older than my actual age. I don't really look old, but I had come to choose older parts because I was trying to show my serious, deep side. The film "White Night" was very hard on me psychologically and physically, so I wanted to do a fresh, young drama befitting my age for my next work. So it wasn't hard to choose "Personal Taste",...More
Son Ye-jin says relieved Lee Min-ho "not young-looking" (2) 2010/03/26, Source,
Actor Lee Min-ho and actress Son Ye-jin pose at the press conference for their upcoming MBC TV series tentatively titled "Personal Preference" in English, held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Seoul, South Korea on March 25, 2010. [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]Q: If you were to compare your character [in "Personal Taste"] with Wang-son from "The Slave Hunters"? Kim Ji-seok-I (Kim): First of all, the two are different genres and the two are different characters. If Wang-son was the youngest character who was comic and provided fun to the drama, Chang-ryeol is a main character who has to lead the story. And he is also different from Wang-son in terms of appearance, so people might feel like they are seeing a little of Wang-son in the character, I expect viewers to quickly fall in love with Han Chang-ryeol. Han Chang-ryoel is the most luxurious character that I have ever played. What is crafty about a person's mind is that, when I was working on "The Slave Hunters", I wanted to do a modern drama. But now, with so many things to worry about including my appearance, I've come to think that dramas are all the same,...More
[INTERVIEW] Actress Min Ji-ah 2010/02/25, Source,
Korean actress Min Ji-ah [Chae Ki-won/10Asia]
My name is Min Ji-ah. I used go by my birth name Kim Min-ju while appearing in short plays but someone told me it would be better for me if I use 'Min' as my last name so I did before starting shooting for "The Slave Hunters". People around me said it sounded better and I think it sounds similar to my original name too. My birthday is on October 31, 1983. I didn't do much on my last birthday because I was on set. If only I had a boyfriend... maybe he would have prepared a special event for me. I was majoring in architectural design but what I really wanted to do was act so I transferred to Kyung Hee University and majored in theater and film. As a young girl, I loved watching movies so I took many film classes. I was in movie clubs when I was in middle and high school.,...More
[INTERVIEW] Actor Lee Hyun-woo - Part 2 2010/02/22, Source,
Actor Lee Hyun-woo [10Asia/Chae Ki-won]
Q: If you were accepted into Cheonha University, what would you like to major in? Lee: Me? I would.. um.. not natural sciences but I am not the liberal arts type person either. I want to do something like sports... I would rather major in music or art rather than be a theater and acting major. Q: The reason I asked the above question is because I am curious about the many dreams that 18-year-old Hyun-woo might have -- you have a lot of potential in many areas outside acting too. Lee: I thought a lot about whether I would apply to the department of theater and acting or to a different department. But I had pursued acting and then realized one day that I'm already 18 and haven't had much time to do anything else. So it's highly likely that I would major in theater and acting but I don't know yet. If I learn to do something else that I am interested in, I might head into that direction. I like to learn how to do new things so if what I learned suits me, I could choose that path or I could show that through my acting.,...More
[PREVIEW] SBS TV series "OB and GY" 2010/01/28, Source,
The cast of "OB and GY": (from left) Actors Ko Joo-won, Jang Seo-hee and Seo Ji-seok pose during a press conference on January 27, 2010. [SBS]
SBS Special Drama - "OB and GY" - Written by Choi Hee-ra - Directed by Lee Hyeon-jik, Choi Yeong-hoon - Produced by JS Pictures - Starring Jang Seo-hee (as Seo Hye-young), Ko Joo-won (as Lee Sang-shik), Seo Ji-sueok (as Wang Jae-seok), Jeong Ho-bin (as Yoon Seo-jin), Song Joong-ki (as Ahn Kyung-woo), Lee Young-eun (as Kim Young-mi) - In one sentence: A competent obstetrics and gynecology surgeon learns about life, grows as a person and finds new love after experiencing demotion, pregnancy and meeting patients with unfortunate life stories. - Premiere date: February 3, 2010 (9:55 PM)
Most people go to the hospital when they fall sick or get into accident. But an OB/GYN office is a place that many women must inevitably visit when they go though a certain process in life -- namely pregnancy and giving birth. The most ordinary and most dramatic aspects to an OB/GYN office was revealed during a 15-minute highlight video shown at the press conference for SBS TV series "OB and GY", held January 27 at Konkuk University Hospital.,...More
[PREVIEW] Movie "Wedding Dress" 2010/01/14, Source,
A scene from film "Wedding Dress" [Road Pictures]
Simply told, film "Wedding Dress" is about a mother who will soon die and her young daughter. But the movie itself is not as simple or cold-hearted as it was just said -- the process of how Go-eun, played by actress Song Yoon-ah and Sorah, by child actor Kim Hyang-ki, are shown spending their remaining time together is sad enough to dry up the viewer's tear ducts. Wedding dress designer Go-eun, who had worked so hard her whole life that she had never packed her daughter's lunchbox before, is diagnosed with stomach cancer one day. When she dies, Sorah will be left alone because her dad passed away much earlier. So Go-woon packs a lunchbox all night long and takes Sorah to the beach to give her daughter memories to cherish after she dies. She also starts making a wedding dress that Sorah will wear one day. But Go-woon's body becomes too fragile and collapses before she completes the wedding dress.,...More
[INTERVIEW] Choi Daniel - Part 2 2010/01/07, Source,
Actor Choi Daniel [Chae Ki-won/10Asia]
10: Then what sort of man do you think Lee Ji-hoon is, regardless of whether you are right or wrong. Choi: I think he's a great guy. There are just certain things in life you have to do, such as saying a hello or pretending to smile, because its just basic manners. But Ji-hoon isn't like that. He'll do what he needs to do, say that it's all that matters and just walk away. I think that is what's so great about him -- having the courage to be someone who you rarely find in society. He could be ostracized for it if he gets unlucky. I guess you could say that he doesn't use unnecessary energy? I think that's why although he seems indifferent toward Jung-eum, his actions such as being nice to her keep appearing on the side. 10: That's actually what people are most interested in. He didn't say much after their kiss but spent Christmas Eve together, didn't say much again after that but declared she is his girlfriend. What's going on in his mind? Choi: I'd give you an explanation if I had seen the full script but it keeps changing so I too don't exactly know what he's thinking. My prediction is that he doesn't want to tie her down but treat her well and take care of her. And when Jung-eum got frustrated because of it, he says he is her girlfriend to make her feel secure. It's hard to express it in words. 10: Then what do you think are the feelings he has for Se-gyeong? Choi: I think Ji-hoon is someone who became an adult without going through growing pains. He did not get along with kids his age when he was young, he wasn't able to tell his friends not to leave when they do... so I think he ended up learning to enjoy himself while observing others. I think the reason he works so hard is because as he became a doctor, his family kept telling him he is doing a good job which would make him feel he is being loved by them. But Se-gyeong is experiencing growing pains. Ji-hoon sees this, feels sorry for her in a way and gets to realize his own trauma. Jung-eum on the other hand is someone who has a bright side to her -- something that Ji-hoon doesn't have. People are bound to be attracted to those who have aspects that they themselves don't have.,...More
[PREVIEW] Film "No Mercy" 2010/01/06, Source, "No Mercy" - Can you have mercy on the film's ending?
Actors Seol Kyeong-gu (left) and Ryoo Seung-beom in "No Mercy" [Cinema Service]
A chopped-up body of a young woman is found at the mouth of the Keum River. Korea's top forensic investigator Kang Min-ho (played by Seol Kyeong-gu) is brought in to look into the cruel, horrendous crime method. His medical advice and detective Min Seo-young's (played by Han Hye-jin) deduction lead to the arrest of a prime suspect -- an environmental activist named Lee Sung-ho (played by Ryoo Seung-beom). Lee's confession wraps up the first part of the movie but this is where the real story of film "No Mercy" begins. Lee Sung-ho, who has kidnapped Kang Min-ho's daughter, demands that Kang prove his innocence. During the process of carrying out Lee's orders, Kang finds the connection between Lee and a criminal case for which he was a witness years ago.,...More
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