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Winners of the 2020 KBS Drama Awards

Source | 2020/12/31 | Permalink

Presented by Do Kyung-wan, Jo Bo-ah, Lee Sang-yeob and Kim Kang-hoon on December 31, 2020, New Year's Eve, we now present to you the winners of the KBS Drama Awards 2020...More

[New Omnibus Movie] "Obsession"

Source | 2020/11/21 | Permalink

Korean omnibus movie "Obsession" added to HanCinema database...More

[Photos + Video] New Stills and Trailer Added for the Korean Omnibus Movie "Obsession"

Source | 2020/11/19 | Permalink

New stills and trailer added for the Korean omnibus movie "Obsession"...More

40th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2019 Winners

2020/10/26 | Permalink

Winners of the 40th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2020. The ceremony will be held on November 11, 2020...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Welcome to X-world"

2020/10/23 | Permalink

Director Han Tae-ee was, at the time "Welcome to X-world" was being filmed, living with her mother and paternal grandfather in a modest home in the Guro district of Seoul. Han Tae-ee doesn't much care for her grandfather. Her mother doesn't either. So why don't they just move out? "Welcome to X-world" , as a documentary, continuously begs that question until Han Tae-ee's mother finally gives up and agrees to leave...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Fukuoka"

2020/10/16 | Permalink

We are introduced to bookstore owner Je-moon (played by Yoon Je-moon) as he is being annoyed by So-dam (played by Park So-dam), who's wearing a school uniform in spite of not being a student. So-dam is a queer young woman, and Je-moon mistakes her peculiar behavior for flirting. The situation gets weirder than that as So-dam eventually talks him into going to the titular "Fukuoka" and by apparent coincidence they run into Je-moon's old friend Hae-hyo (played by Kwon Hae-hyo) at a bar...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "East Asia Anti-Japan Armed Front"

2020/09/19 | Permalink

Some fifteen years ago director Kim Mi-rye was working in Japan documenting active Japanese labor movements when she learned of the radical "East Asia Anti-Japan Armed Front" from the seventies. It's easy to see how they made such a strong impression on Kim Mi-rye, a Korean woman. Despite being Japanese themselves, the Armed Front hated the Japanese Empire and saw the then current Japanese government as a reincarnation of that power. The South Korean government, then, being little more than a puppet state equally oppressing its own people...More

Yoon Park and Lee Hyun-wook-I's Strong Charisma in "Search"

Source | 2020/09/09 | Permalink

Stills of Yoon Park and Lee Hyun-wook-I from "Search" have been released.

The OCN Dramatic Cinema fourth project, "Search" released charismatic still cuts of Yoon Park and Lee Hyun-wook-I on the 9th...More

Ji Soo Attempts a New Character in "Amanza"

Source | 2020/08/04 | Permalink

Actor Ji Soo is lead starring in the Kakao M Original drama "Amanza" and attempting at setting his lifetime character.

In a recent script reading, Ji Soo deeply digested the emotional changes of a young man who is diagnosed with terminal cancer. His delicate facial expressions, which capture complex emotions, raise expectations for a new lifetime character...More

Divorce Lawyer Uses Webtoons to Guide 'Conscious Uncoupling'

Source | 2020/08/02 | Permalink

Divorce lawyer Choi Yu-na puts webtoons detailing the painful process of splitting up on her social media.

Choi has been a divorce lawyer for nine years and handled around 1,000 cases so far, and the webtoons, titled "Marriage Red", reflect the experiences of her clients. She writes the words and an illustrator handles the artwork...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "The Prisoner"

2020/07/18 | Permalink

Director Kang Kil-yong is a legend when it comes to martial arts choreography, having worked on a ridiculously large number of famous South Korean films over the years. "The Prisoner" is his first attempt leading a movie production as director though, and the results are about what you'd expect. The acting, the script, and the set design is all pretty cheap and even cheesy. But those fight scenes! With very little to work with, Kang Kil-yong pulls off some outrageously kinetic hand-to-hand fisticuff duels...More

Seo Ye-ji Finds Part of a Lifetime in tvN's Hit Series

Source | 2020/07/18 | Permalink

Seo Ye-ji has landed the part of a lifetime in tvN's hit series "It's Okay to Not Be Okay". She plays a successful children's book writer with childhood trauma, which has made her aloof and unsympathetic, so now nothing stops her from doing and saying what she wants.

Young women are especially bowled over Seo's character as they can get vicarious pleasure from watching her, with the rating for target viewers between 20 and 50 coming on top among on cable channel shows at the same time slot...More

[HanCinema's News] June This Year Dominated by First-time Directors

2020/06/29 | Permalink

In part due to the shake-up caused by COVID-19 earlier this year, when the box office reopened in June a curious coincidence had taken place. A disproportionate numbers of films, including three of the four major releases and the best performing independent film, all came from first-time directors...More

"Mouse" Lee Seung-gi Cast as Rookie Policeman

Source | 2020/06/03 | Permalink

"What if the child you are bearing is a future killer?"

Actor Lee Seung-gi confirmed a role in the new tvN drama "Mouse" as Jeong Ba-reum, a new policeman...More

56th Daejong Film Awards (Grand Bell Awards) 2020 Winners

2020/06/03 | Permalink

Winners for the 56th Daejong Film Awards (Grand Bell Awards) 2020 during the ceremony presentede by Han Hyejin and Lee Hwi-jae...More

Who Will Get the Baeksang Arts Awards' Actor Prize - Kang Ha-neul, Park Seo-joon, Hyun Bin, Ju Ji-hoon and Namgoong Min

Source | 2020/06/02 | Permalink

No matter who wins the award, there is no disagreement.

It is outstanding just to just to hear their names. There is a fierce competition for the trophy. Amid heated competition, we are already curious about who will win the Best Actor award in the TV category. The media is so interested that it is considered to be the highlight of the Baeksang Arts Awards. The reason why the competition is so fierce is because all five candidates have shown reliable performances in their works to the extent that they are called 'lifetime works'. Who will smile brightly in the middle of the stage? The moment to face the result is only three days away...More

Shining Supporting Actors Yang Kyung-won, Chae Gook-hee, Ahn Bo-hyun and Kwak Sun-young

Source | 2020/05/28 | Permalink

As much as the main characters, they are being cheered on for their great acting and their acting skills, rather than their visuals. Supporting actors' performances also broaden their perspectives on viewing works and add to the richness of the plot.

The main characters lead the center of the story and the supporting characters influence them. Depending on their mood and role, the mood of the work will not only depend on them, but will also influence the story's direction and change what the main character thinks...More

2020 Baeksang Arts Awards - Rookie Award Candidates, From Ahn Bo-hyun to Lee Jae-wook and Kim Da-mi to Han So-hee

Source | 2020/05/24 | Permalink

Which person who shone in the past year will be picked? The competition among rookies to win the coveted Rookie of the Year trophy is fierce, as it is a once in a lifetime win during these 56th Baeksang Arts Awards, which are more intense than ever.

The competition for the Rookie of the Year award is fierce, but officials say it is especially so this year. Since the final candidates were unveiled, people are saying it doesn't matter who gets it now. Ten male and female actors with less than three casting experiences were selected as finalists...More

[HanCinema's News] Kim Hee-ae and Han So-hee Show Rival Influences Even after "The World of the Married"

2020/05/18 | Permalink

Even as "The World of the Married" has finished its initial airing the influence of Kim Hee-ae and Han So-hee in fashion circles seems set to last for some time to come. With Kim Hee-ae appearing in Elle and Han So-hee appearing in Cosmopolitan, the two actresses are showing off two very different versions of femininity. This contrast, indeed, is a big part of what let "The World of the Married" come to prominence in the first place...More

Korean Movie Opening Today 2020/04/10

2020/04/10 | Permalink

Korean movie opening today 2020/04/10: "Pizza Dare 1"...More

[Photos + Video] New Stills and Trailer Added for the Upcoming Korean Movie "Pizza Dare 1"

Source | 2020/04/08 | Permalink

New stills and trailer added for the upcoming Korean movie "Pizza Dare 1"...More

Grand Prize Actors Lee Bo-young, Kim Hee-ae and Song Seung-heon Are Coming

Source | 2020/03/30 | Permalink

They are coming.

For an actor, winning the grand prize is an honor everyone dreams of. This is because it is an honor for being the best actor with not only their acting skills, but also a box office hit. Actors who win the grand prize have long established themselves as 'trusted actors'. A star-studded lineup is on its way and exciting viewers...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Wedding Dress"

2020/02/29 | Permalink

Go-eun (played by Song Yoon-ah) is a wedding dress designer. This actually isn't as important to the overall story as the title implies, as "Wedding Dress" is overwhelmingly the story of Go-eun's relationship with her daughter So-ra (played by Kim Hyang-gi). Given the time period in which this movie was released, and Go-eun's peculiar behavior until we learn the actual premise, you can probably guess that "Wedding Dress" will be going somewhere sad...More

"The Call" Oh Jung-se Shows a New Side After "When the Camellia Blooms" and "Stove League"

Source | 2020/02/19 | Permalink

Park Ho-san, Oh Jung-se and Lee Dong-hwi are going to undergo a transformation for the film "The Call".

"The Call" is a mystery thriller about two women who live in the past and the present, connecting through a phone call...More

Webdrama "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong" Hits 12 Million Views

Source | 2020/02/13 | Permalink

Webdrama "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong" hit 12 million views.

The number of views surpassed 12 million and the average number of hits per episode exceeded 1.1 million...More

Webtoon Original Dramas, Clarifications Inside the Works

Source | 2020/01/30 | Permalink

Webtoons will keep trending this year. Webtoons have been favored by many producers in that they have already been verified in terms of their workability and popularity, and have a solid existing hardcore fanbase.

The first webtoon drama this year is the jTBC drama "Itaewon Class" starting on the 31st. "Itaewon Class" has recorded the highest number of paid sales and a cumulative lookup of 220,000 views among Daum webtoons...More

Ji Chang-wook and Kim Yoo-jung Confirm Roles in "Backstreet Rookie" by the PD of "The Fiery Priest"

Source | 2020/01/29 | Permalink

Actors Ji Chang-wook and Kim Yoo-jung star in the new Lifetime drama "Backstreet Rookie".

"Backstreet Rookie" is a webtoon-based drama about young woman named Jeong Set-byeol coming to work at Choi Dae-hyeon's convenient store...More

[New Movie] "A Long Time"

Source | 2020/01/18 | Permalink

Korean movie "A Long Time" added to HanCinema database...More

Ji Chang-wook Clarifies He Is Not Confirmed for "Backstreet Rookie"

Source | 2020/01/15 | Permalink

It turns out actor Ji Chang-wook was offered a role in a new drama, but hasn't made up his mind yet, according to Glorious Entertainment.

Lifetime Channel drama "Backstreet Rookie" is an unpredictable 24 hour rom-com about a 4-dimensional girl and a handsome, but clumsy boy who work in a convenience store...More

Bang Minah and Lee Ga-sub Confirm Film "A Long Time"

Source | 2020/01/14 | Permalink

Bang Minah and Lee Ga-sub confirmed positions in the film "A Long Time".

"A Long Time" is about the things that occur when Yeon-kyeong (Bang Minah), who wants to be a singer songwriter, coincidentally runs into Hyeon-soo (Lee Ga-sub), her first love and a wound from the past, on her way to meet her musical inspiration and master of music for the opportunity of a lifetime...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Don't Cry for Me Sudan: Shukran Baba"

2020/01/11 | Permalink

Lee Tae-seok was a trained doctor and musician who spurned a worldly life for the Catholic priesthood to instead minister to people in war-torn Sudan way back in 2001. Lee Tae-seok continued this mission until his death in 2010. Later that year his missionary work was immortalized in the award-winning KBS documentary "Don't Cry for Me Sudan". During his lifetime Lee Tae-seok was also highly decorated for his charitable work...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Montmartre de Papa"

2020/01/11 | Permalink

Hyeong-sik is a retired middle school teacher. He wasn't always like that. Originally the man was just a middle school art teacher, and after a lifetime of work, retirement brings the obvious question- now what? Hyeong-sik goes to conventions with his wife Woon-sook. Also they go on hikes together. We see Hyeong-sik occupy himself with teaching volunteer art classes to monks. Where "Montmartre de Papa" gets rolling is when Hyeong-sik gets an artist visa and heads for France...More

More Regions Refuse to Have Children

Source | 2019/12/29 | Permalink

The number of regions in Korea where married couples have no children is on a rapid increase.

Out of 228 cities and provincial towns across the country, the number where the total fertility rate is less than one child increased from 18 in 2015 to 87 last year, according to Statistics Korea. It is expected to reach nearly 100 this year...More

Seoul's Birthrate Dwindles to New Low

Source | 2019/12/01 | Permalink

The average number of children a woman bears in her lifetime fell to a record-low 0.69 among Seoul residents in the third quarter of this year.

Statistics Korea said Wednesday that 73,793 babies were born in the country from July to September of this year, down 8.3 percent compared to the same period of 2018...More

Koreans Get Keener on Work-Life Balance

Source | 2019/12/01 | Permalink

Korea's traditional hardworking ethos appears to be changing as a younger generation embrace the shorter working week and put quality of life above slaving for a corporation till they drop. But at the same time social mobility is disappearing, and many young people face a lifetime in dead-end jobs...More

Korean Dramas Starting Today 2019/11/29

Source | 2019/11/29 | Permalink

Korean dramas starting today 2019/11/29:  "Chocolate", "Drama Special - Hidden" and "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong"...More

39th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2019 Ceremony

Source | 2019/11/13 | Permalink

Ceremony for the 39th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2019, held on November 13, 2019...More

39th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2019 Winners

Source | 2019/11/08 | Permalink

Winners of the 39th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2019. The ceremony will be held on November 13, 2019...More

"Woman of 9.9 Billion", Cho Yeo-jeong and Kim Kang-woo's First Encounter

Source | 2019/11/04 | Permalink

Cho Yeo-jeong and Kim Kang-woo had a strong first encounter.

The SBS Wednesday / Thursday drama "Woman of 9.9 Billion" stimulates curiosity in the relationship between Cho Yeo-jeong and Kim Kang-woo...More

[New Web-drama] "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong"

Source | 2019/10/12 | Permalink

Upcoming Korean Web-drama "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong" added to HanCinema database...More

[New Web-drama] "22 Flower Street"

Source | 2019/10/12 | Permalink

Upcoming Korean Web-drama "22 Flower Street" added to HanCinema database...More

Webdrama "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong" to Start in November

Source | 2019/10/10 | Permalink

Lifetime Channel has confirmed the making of the webdrama "Kiss Scene in Yeonnam-dong".

Lifetime Channel is coming up with a new romantic comedy that youths in reality will relate to...More

Birthrate Hit Record Low in Q2

Source | 2019/09/01 | Permalink

Korea's total fertility rate fell to an all-time low of 0.91 in the second quarter of this year, or less than one child likely to be born to every woman over her lifetime, Statistics Korea said Wednesday.

With only 75,448 babies born nationwide between April and June, the fertility rate dropped in all 17 provinces and major cities except Gangwon Province. The worst was in Seoul with just 0.71...More

Korea's Birthrate Plunges Further

Source | 2019/08/04 | Permalink

Korea's birthrate is estimated at 0.89 to 0.9 this year. Last year the birthrate fell below one child per woman over her lifetime for the first time at 0.98, and now it could drop below 0.9...More

39th Korea Gold Awards Film Festival 2019 Red Carpet Winners

2019/07/26 | Permalink

Winners of the 39th Korea Gold Awards Film Festival 2019 organized by the Korean Society of Cinematographers...More

24th Chunsa Film Art Awards 2019 Winners

2019/07/18 | Permalink

Winners for 24th Chunsa Film Art Awards 2019...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "A Long Way Around"

2019/07/13 | Permalink

Though director Lee Seung-hyun is only thirty years old, he draws on a wealth of footage taken from his own lifetime to put together "A Long Way Around", a documentary depicting various comfort women as they emerge from obscurity in the early nineties. The reason why they pop up then is because that's when the experience of wartime prostitutes under the Japanese Empire became a nationalist issue in South Korea. And by that time, they were already starting to die of old age...More

Korean Movies Opening Today 2019/07/04 in Korea

Source | 2019/07/04 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2019/07/04 in Korea "A Daytime Picnic", "Two person at the same town SE2" and "Astro Gardener"...More

[Video] Trailer Added for the Upcoming Korean Omnibus Movie "Two Person at the Same Town SE2"

Source | 2019/07/03 | Permalink

Trailer added for the upcoming Korean omnibus movie "Two person at the same town SE2"...More

Korean Movies Opening Today 2019/06/13 in Korea

Source | 2019/06/13 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2019/06/13 in Korea: "Judgment Night", "The Boy Who Had Horns" and "Norigae"...More

[New Movie] "Judgment Night"

Source | 2019/06/08 | Permalink

Upcoming Korean movie "Judgment Night" added to HanCinema database...More

[HanCinema's News] Jo Eun-ji's Debut Film as a Director, "Not the Lips" Begins Filming

2019/06/07 | Permalink

On June 4th "Not the Lips" began filming. The film is Jo Eun-ji's debut as a director. It stars Ryu Seung-ryong as a successful author in his late forties who is currently in a slump and Oh Na-ra as an aspiring author in her early forties...More

[Photos] New Stills Added for the Upcoming Korean Movie "Judgment Night"

Source | 2019/06/07 | Permalink

New stills added for the upcoming Korean movie "Judgment Night"...More

[Videos] Trailers Added for the Upcoming Korean Movie "Judgment Night"

Source | 2019/06/02 | Permalink

Trailers added for the upcoming Korean movie "Judgment Night"...More

85-Year-Old Lee Soon-jae's First Fan Signing in 63 Years

Source | 2019/05/28 | Permalink

Actor Lee Soon-jae is having his first fan signing session in 63 years.

A fan signing and a mentor lecture will be held on the 17th of June in Busan at 1PM...More

"Perfume" Shin Sung-rok and Go Won-hee Freeze in the Middle of the Night

Source | 2019/05/27 | Permalink

Shin Sung-rok and Go Won-hee appear to be 'frozen' in the middle of the night.

The new KBS 2TV drama "Perfume" is a romantic drama about a creatively ill genius designer, a mysterious fashion model back from hell, and the second chance at life given to them...More

[HanCinema's News] Japanese Video Rental Store TSUTAYA Publishes List of Most Popular Korean Dramas

2019/05/01 | Permalink

After sparking the Korean wave back in the mid-2000's, it would seem that the Japanese market still has fond nostalgia for Korean drama produced in that era. These are findings of a list published by the Japanese video rental store chain TSUTAYA, which to this day still makes decent income by renting out Korean dramas...More

Jeon Do-yeon Honored for Lifetime Achievement at Italian Film Fest

Source | 2019/04/29 | Permalink

Actress Jeon Do-yeon's career in film has been honored with a lifetime achievement award at the Far East Film Festival in Italy.

Jeon received the Golden Mulberry award at the festival's opening in Udine on Friday...More

CJ ENM's '300: War of United Voices' is going worldwide

2019/04/14 | Permalink

The music competition format that is set for U.S. development has also sealed an option deal in Europe.

Asia's leading content and merchandising company CJ ENM announced today that they have sealed another deal in Europe for '300: War of United Voices'...More

[HanCinema's News] Choo Ja-hyun gushes about husbands at "Beautiful World" press conference

2019/04/05 | Permalink

At a press conference for "Beautiful World" on April 4th Choo Ja-hyun spoke positively of her co-star, Park Hee-soon. She also made reference to her real-life husband, Yu Xiaoguang. The specific quote was, in real life as well as in dramas I've been lucky with husbands.

The statement is somewhat ironic, given the dark context of "Beautiful World". In the drama Choo Ja-hyun and Park Hee-soon play parents who are dragged into school violence as their son becomes involved in an assault case...More

Population Starts Dwindling a Decade Earlier Than Expected

Source | 2019/03/31 | Permalink

Korea's natural population will start to shrink this year, a decade earlier than originally expected, as deaths outnumber births, Statistics Korea said Thursday.

Statistics Korea usually announces population estimates every five years and was set to make the next announcement in 2021 but brought the announcement forward due to the ultra-low birthrate, causing a drastic change in natural population analysis...More

Marriages Hit Record Low Last Year

Source | 2019/03/24 | Permalink

Korea's marriage rate hit a 46-year low last year, according to Statistics Korea on Wednesday...More

Fertility Rate Plummets to Less Than 1 Child per Woman

Source | 2019/03/03 | Permalink

Korea's total fertility rate dropped to 0.98 last year, or less than one child likely to be born to Korean women over their lifetime.

Korea is the only country in the OECD whose fertility rate has dipped below 1. The rate dwindled even though the government spent more than W58 trillion to encourage childbirth over the past two years (US$1=W1,119)...More

Korean Drama Starting Today 2019/02/14 in Korea

Source | 2019/02/14 | Permalink

Korean drama starting today 2019/02/14 in Korea "Ghostderella"...More

[New Drama] A Woman Doesn't Welcome Visions of the Dead in "Ghostderella"

Source | 2019/02/09 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean drama "Ghostderella"'s page to HanCinema database...More

[Photos] Behind the Scenes Images Added for the Upcoming Korean Drama "Ghostderella"

Source | 2019/02/07 | Permalink

Behind the scenes images added for the upcoming Korean drama "Ghostderella"...More

[Orion's Daily Ramblings] Kim Bo-ra and Lee Jong-won-I Lead Webdrama "Ghostderella"

2019/02/04 | Permalink

The age of ghostly love is not over yet in Dramaland, and we have a new addition in the form of "Ghostderella", a webdrama produced by Lifetime for its YouTube channel, and set to air this month. The ghost-themed romance stars Kim Bo-ra fresh off "SKY Castle", and Lee Jong-won-I...More

[Orion's Daily Ramblings] "Liver or Die" Releases Heartbreaking Teaser Poster for Yu Jun-sang

2018/12/14 | Permalink

Thank you, KBS 2TV. I needed some soul-crushing pain in my morning. Upcoming family drama "Liver or Die" believes our heart is optional, and aims to break it with this first teaser poster for the series. Ouch, drama. Beautiful ouch...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "A Long Farewell"

2018/11/24 | Permalink

On the southeastern edge of Seoul, real-estate speculation spans out from the Gangnam district and slowly threatens to encompass all the region with the same hideous conformity of modern style apartment buildings. While "A Long Farewell" deals with one particular neighborhood affected by these market forces, the embellishment is mine. Director Raya has actually made a very abstract documentary- the kind you might expect to find at an art museum played on permanent loop...More

38th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2018 Winners

Source | 2018/11/15 | Permalink

Winners of the 38th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2018. The ceremony was held on November 13, 2018...More

Young People See No Hope Amid Soaring Home Prices

Source | 2018/09/16 | Permalink


The snowballing cost of housing and student-loan debt are fueling disenchantment and frustration among young people...More

[Spoiler] "Time - Drama" Kim Jung-hyun's running out of time, Hwang Seung-eon finds out

Source | 2018/09/05 | Permalink

On the latest episode of the MBC drama "Time - Drama", Cheon Soo-ho (Kim Jung-hyun) and Seol Ji-hyun (Seolhyun) got married while Eun Chae-ah (Hwang Seung-eon) watched...More

[Orion's Drama News] Ghosts of the Past

2018/09/01 | Permalink

The past comes back to haunt the characters of today's featured dramas in different ways, and I start off with the reunion of a father and his daughter in "My Only One". If you're looking for actual hauntings, fear not – or rather be afraid – because "The Ghost Detective" is premiering this upcoming week, and its chilling mystery deepens...More

[New Movie] A Love of a Lifetime Documented in "Butterfly"

Source | 2018/08/25 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean documentary "Butterfly"'s page to HanCinema database...More

KCON 2018 LA Wraps Another Successful Year Reaching 94,000 K-pop and K-culture Fans in Attendance

2018/08/19 | Permalink

Amplified Fan to Artist Access and an Expanded Beauty Block Highlighted Annual K-pop Music Festival and Fan Convention
KCON 2018 USA presented by Toyota drew a record-breaking 94,000 fans to KCON 2018 LA, the largest celebration of Korean culture in the world this past weekend in Downtown Los Angeles at the Los Angeles Convention Center and Staples Center. KCON 2018 USA closes out the summer with a combined total of 147,000 attendees for its two U.S. events in 2018...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Life" Episode 3

2018/08/05 | Permalink

What I thought was an expert at playing it safe is just a rebel without a plan, as Jin-woo lacks the necessary strategic thinking to handle the Pandora's box that he has single-handedly opened. More importantly, he lacks the conviction to do so. Once again, Seung-hyo does what he knows best, and brings Jin-woo face to face with these lackluster efforts. Seung-hyo is clearly winning, and Jin-woo needs to catch up...More

[Interview] Kim Myung-soo Draws Inspiration From Feedback Good and Bad

Source | 2018/07/17 | Permalink

He is no longer Kim Myung-soo from Infinite, but Kim Myung-soo-I the actor. "I have to work hard to break prejudices about my being a former idol".

Kim Myung-soo played Im Ba-reun in the recently ended JTBC drama "Miss Hammurabi" and Seoul Paper met him in a café in Seoul...More

"Miss Hammurabi" Will Forever Be in Our Hearts

Source | 2018/07/17 | Permalink

The main cast of "Miss Hammurabi" expressed how they felt about finishing the drama...More

Jun Jong-seo Talks About Her Step into Spotlight with Debut Film

Source | 2018/07/14 | Permalink

Actress Jun Jong-seo spent more time in movie theaters than in the classroom while a film major at Sejong University because she felt she could not learn what she wanted at school.

She skipped most of her lectures, she admits, and instead immersed herself in films, which comforted and helped her to pull herself together whenever she was going through a hard time...More

[Guest Film Review] "Spinning the Tales of Cruelty Towards Women" with Full Movie

2018/06/23 | Permalink

Despite the rather extreme title, which points both at a melodrama and an exploitation film, "Spinning the Tales of Cruelty Towards Women" is actually a quite significant film for the Korean movie industry, since it was the first one to screen in the "Un Certain Regard" section of the Cannes Film Festival. Furthermore, the depiction of the hardships women had to face during the Joseon Dynasty spawned much controversy, by many who believed that the events depicted in the film were hyperbolic...More

[Orion's Daily Ramblings] Ji Sung, Han Ji-min and More Attend Script Reading for "Familiar Wife"

2018/05/29 | Permalink

Summer romance drama with a fate-bendy twist, "Familiar Wife", has made its first step into the pool of promotional waters, as the drama has released script reading stills revealing its main and extended cast. Joining Ji Sung and Han Ji-min are so many familiar faces, which make yours truly truly happy...More

Childbirths Fall to Fresh Record Low

Source | 2018/05/27 | Permalink

Fewer than 90,000 children were born in Korea in the first three months of this year, a fresh record low, but deaths exceeded the 80,000 mark for the first time.

The birthrate has been dwindling despite government spending worth more than W200 trillion to tackle the issue over the past decade (US$1=W1,083)...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Haewon"

2018/05/19 | Permalink

In "Haewon" director Gu Jahywan takes us on a road trip to a series of sites wherein civilians were massacred in between the end of the Japanese Occupation and the close of the Korean War. Really, the opening subtitles spell the situation out pretty well. Everyone thought it was great that the Japanese were gone, but that hope didn't last long. The more the citizenry tried to express themselves democratically, the more the South Korean government became determined to stomp out dissent by any means necessary...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "The Gateless Gate"

2018/05/19 | Permalink

The opening scenes of "The Gateless Gate" dramatize the legendary historical event that led to the creation of the Zen Buddhist koans of the same name. After the dramatization, "The Gateless Gate" transitions into a documentary depicting eleven practitioners of Korean Buddhism who undergo a ritual inspired by the teachings of those koans. They isolate themselves into a small locked room with an adjoining yard for a thousand days, and spend that time meditating...More

[Lily's Take] 8 Celebrities Who Were Bullied Growing Up

Source | 2018/04/29 | Permalink

Someone once said that school is a small society. In such society, there's always social ranking – those who are 'in' and those who are 'out'...More

Devastated Choi Bool-am Visits Late Actress Choi Eun-hee's Funeral

Source | 2018/04/18 | Permalink

Actor Choi Bool-am attended Choi Eun-hee's funeral.

He comforted the family of the deceased with deep sadness in his eyes...More

Choi Eun-hee's Funeral

Source | 2018/04/16 | Permalink

Actress Choi Eun-hee passed away from sickness and her funeral is being held in Sungmo Hospital in Seoul. She passed away at 92 this year.

Choi Eun-hee debuted in the theater for the first time in 1942 with Kim Ji-mee and Um Aing-ran. They were the original troikas of the 1950s to 60s. She married director Shin Sang-ok in 1954 and starred in 130 or so movies throughout her lifetime...More

Dwindling Marriages Bode Ill for Birthrate

Source | 2018/03/25 | Permalink

The number of marriages hit a record low last year. The total fertility rate -- the average number of children born to a woman over her lifetime -- also hit a record low of 1.05 last year and will probably drop below one...More

[Lily's Take] Han Chae-ah to Become a Bride in May

Source | 2018/03/08 | Permalink

Actress Han Chae-ah announced her marriage to the national hero, Cha Bum-kun's youngest son, Cha Se-jji...More

Birthrate Hits Another Record Low, Outstripping No. of Deaths

Source | 2018/03/04 | Permalink

The number of babies born in Korea fell below 400,000 for the first time last year. The total fertility rate -- the average number of children born to a woman aged between 15 and 49 over her lifetime -- fell to 1.05, according to figures released by Statistics Korea on Wednesday...More

[Lily's Take] Seo Woo Shares Her Trauma Caused by Anti-fans

Source | 2018/03/01 | Permalink

On March 1st, actress Seo Woo appeared on a talk show "Happy Together" and shared her trauma regarding anti-fans...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Mother - Drama" Episode 10

2018/02/25 | Permalink

Our heroines have been through a long and arduous journey, but the nature of their bond, and the beast stalking them would not remain at bay forever. Hye-na's guilt-ridden escape and the law's discovery of Soo-jin's actions pushes everyone to reveal their honesty enough for the bonds between them to show themselves for how strong and irreplaceable they really are. With Soo-jin and Hye-na officially on the run and in danger, is a happy ending possible...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Mother - Drama" Episode 6

2018/02/09 | Permalink

Soo-jin has been juggling a lot of lies and deceit towards different people currently in her life, so it was only a matter of time before it all came crashing down. Different truths are revealed to different characters, and a meeting takes place which has been a long time coming. Jin-hong becomes the next shelter for our heroines, and I finally see the value of his role in Soo-jin and Hye-na's life at a time they need him the most...More

[Lily's Take] Top Actresses Attend Son Ye-jin's Birthday Party

Source | 2018/01/10 | Permalink

To celebrate their best friend's birthday, top actresses like Gong Hyo-jin, Lee Min-jung, Oh Yoon-ah, Uhm Ji-won, Song Yoon-ah, and Lee Jung-hyun came together...More

Working-Age Population Dwindling Fast

Source | 2018/01/07 | Permalink

Korea's working-age population is dwindling faster than that of other OECD countries, according to a study...More

Birthrate Likely to Fall Below 300,000 in 2022

Source | 2018/01/07 | Permalink

The number of births fell below 400,000 in 2017 for the first time. If the trend continues, fewer than 300,000 babies will be born in 2022, a study projects...More

Winners of the 2017 KBS Drama Awards

Source | 2017/12/31 | Permalink

Presented by Namgoong MinLee Yu-ri and comedian Park Soo-hong on December 31, 2017, New Year's Eve, the KBS Drama Awards was an exciting affair that recognized the hard work of the people who brought us this year's excellent KBS television. We now present to you the winners of the KBS Drama Awards...More

Today's Photo: December 29, 2017 [3]

Source | 2017/12/29 | Permalink

Actress Nana attends the 6th Korean Top Star Awards ceremony in Seoul on Thursday.


Top Star Award


[HanCinema's Digest] Travel Bug Bites

2017/12/24 | Permalink

A promotional video from Gangwon Province reveals the stunning sights and flavours of the region, discover the pleasures of Korea's many beautiful gardens and landscapes through Lonely Planet, the government rolls out special passes just ahead of the Winter Games in February, and The Korea Times puts a new hotel in Seoul in the spotlight...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Where is your hometown?"

2017/12/09 | Permalink

After the Japanese Occupation ended normal Koreans in difficult economic circumstances struggled to find work. With the collapse of the Japanese Empire the only stable country that was a viable location for economic migration was the Soviet Union. Then the Korean War happened, and all of a sudden, all the Koreans who had taken on temporary positions on the Kamchatka Peninsula were unable to return home. "Where is your hometown" is a documentarian explanation of their story...More

37th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2017 Red Carpet and Ceremony

2017/11/09 | Permalink

Park Seo-joon, Sol Kyung-gu, Na Moon-hee, Jeon Hye-jin-II and Choi Hee-seo

Red carpet event and ceremony for the 37th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2017 held on November 9 and presented by Seo Kang-joon and Lee Sun-bin...More

37th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2017 Winners

Source | 2017/10/31 | Permalink

Winners of the 37th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards 2017. The ceremony will held on November 9 and presented by Seo Kang-joon and Lee Sun-bin...More

Go Won-hee to star in "The Best Time to Quit a Company"

Source | 2017/10/12 | Permalink

Go Won-hee is starring in the new drama "The Best Time to Quit a Company"...More

Korea Drama Festival: Winners

2017/10/04 | Permalink

The Korea Drama Awards took a look at the best of the best and the competition between nominees was fierce. Congratulations to all of the nominees and let's check out the winners...More

[Video] Seolhyun's beautiful voice for "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/09/18 | Permalink

As dark, strong moments of father and daughter collage across the screen, Seolhyun's dulcet tones intone an acappella melody, showcasing the heart of "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

"Memoir of a Murderer" hits 2 million

Source | 2017/09/17 | Permalink

Show Box announced that Sol Kyung-gu's "Memoir of a Murderer" had broken two million audience views on the 17th by 4 PM KST. It has become one of Korea's best thrillers...More

Ex-German Leader Visits Sex Slavery Victims

Source | 2017/09/17 | Permalink

Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder hugs a victim of wartime sex slavery in Gwangju, Gyeonggi Province on Monday. /Yonhap

Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder on Monday visited the survivors of sexual enslavement by the Japanese military during World War II and expressed regret over Japan's refusal to apologize for its wartime atrocities...More

[Photos + Video] "Memoir of a Murderer" adds stills, full cast, and trailer

Source | 2017/09/15 | Permalink

"Memoir of a Murderer" is out and drawing viewers into theaters. More dark stills of Sol Kyung-gu, Kim Nam-gil and Seolhyun have come out to help promote its efforts. The full cast has alsobeen released. On top of that, we get the 30-second trailer, which gives us everything we needed to know in order to be drawn in: a serial killer with Alzheimer's must kill again to stop another killer and protect his beautiful daughter...More

Kang Ha-neul's friendship goals

Source | 2017/09/13 | Permalink

Korean actor Kang Ha-neul officially enlisted for compulsory military service on September 11, 2017. That morning the 28-year-old actor posted a heartfelt message on his instagram accompanied by several photos of his special haircut ceremony with his close friends...More

Korean movie opening today 2017/09/06 in Korea

Source | 2017/09/06 | Permalink

Korean movie opening today 2017/09/06 in Korea: "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos] "Memoir of a Murderer" releases new stills of Kim Nam-gil and Seolhyun

Source | 2017/09/01 | Permalink

"Memoir of a Murderer" is gearing up for its September 6 release and as a result we have new stills to enjoy. There are some of Kim Nam-gil, Seolhyun, Oh Dal-soo, and a few others to keep us sated until this puppy hits the big screens, ready to help us dive into the degrading psyche of a serial killer...More

[Video] "Memoir of a Murderer" releases new tension-riddled trailer

Source | 2017/08/30 | Permalink

There is no shortage of teasers and trailers for "Memoir of a Murderer", which has been enjoying screenings and press conferences in Korea. This latest video, a written and read narrative of a retired serial killer is no less suspenseful than the material that has come before it...More

[Video] Join the "Memoir of a Murderer" cast in this englightening showcase for the upcoming film

Source | 2017/08/25 | Permalink

Join the "Memoir of a Murderer" cast in this englightening showcase for the upcoming film...More

[Video + Photo] movie talk and still for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/24 | Permalink

New movie talk and still for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos] Added new posters for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/23 | Permalink

Added new posters for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos + Video] Suspenseful new stills and preview video for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/22 | Permalink

Suspenseful new stills and preview video for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos + Video] New stills and riveting video added for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/16 | Permalink

New stills and riveting video added for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos] Haunting new character posters added for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/11 | Permalink

Haunting new character posters added for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Video] Thrilling trailer released for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/07 | Permalink

Thrilling trailer released for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/04 | Permalink

Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos] Added posters for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/08/01 | Permalink

Added posters for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photos] Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/07/28 | Permalink

Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Photo] Added new still for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2017/07/19 | Permalink

Added new still for the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"...More

[Orion's Drama News] The Element of Surprise

2017/07/01 | Permalink

There is no rest for Dramaland as viewer appetite takes no holiday breaks. This week I take a look at the cast of "Argon" and wonder where it stands, aside from its place on the periodic table. I have more drama news after this and worry not, because they include water gods...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Strong Family" Episodes 29-30

2017/05/29 | Permalink

The romantic subplots in "Strong Family" are really good in how they relate to each other. We have Ik-hee going through the adolescent awkwardness of a teen romance where no one knows what they're doing, Jeong-min being generally giddy about a relationship that will most likely end in marriage (because of her age), and then Miss Jo contemplating a late lifetime romance. Incidentally, Choon-seop (played by Nam Kyung-eup) is my favorite love interest of the bunch. The man really rocks his late fifties facial hair...More

[Spoiler] "You're Too Much" Kang Tae-oh and Jun Kwang-ryul meet for the first time

Source | 2017/05/28 | Permalink

On the recent episode of the MBC weekend drama "You're Too Much", Kang Tae-oh and Jun Kwang-ryul met for the first time regarding the suicide of someone but got off on the wrong foot.

Seong-hwan (Jun Kwang-ryul) heard from Na-kyeong (Yoon Ah-jung) that Yoo Jina's (Uhm Jung-hwa) son had something to with the recent suicide. He met Kyeong-soo (Kang Tae-oh) himself...More

Chunsa Film Art Awards 2017 Winners

2017/05/26 | Permalink

Chunsa Film Art Awards 2017 winners' list...More

53rd Baeksang Arts Awards 2017 Winners in Dramas

2017/05/03 | Permalink

53rd Baeksang Arts Awards 2017 winners in dramas...More

Eric Mun and Na Hye-mi to get wedding pictures taken at Bae Yong-joon's honeymoon site

Source | 2017/04/30 | Permalink

Soon to be married Eric Mun and Na Hye-mi are having their wedding pictures taken in Korea.

The location is said to be a resort in the South on the 4th and 5th of June...More

Jobseekers Favor Quality of Life Over High Pay

Source | 2017/04/16 | Permalink

The most important factor young jobseekers look for in a new job is a corporate culture that gives them time to enjoy their lives rather than high pay, a poll suggests...More

Chinese Tourists Love Korean ID Photos

Source | 2017/03/05 | Permalink

A woman from Hong Kong has her ID photo taken in a studio in Sincheon, Seoul.

Tourists from China and Hong Kong love having their ID photos taken in Korea because of the flattering magic studios here perform in no time.

Kim Jing-sung, who own a photo studio in Sinchon Seoul, said he has 15 to 20 Chinese customers a day. "Most of them bring photos of Korean or Chinese celebrities and ask their ID photos to be taken that way", he added...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Moon Young"

2017/03/04 | Permalink

Moon-young (played by Kim Tae-ri, the underappreciated actual female lead in "The Handmaiden") is a taciturn student who compulsively records nearly every moment she spends outdoors. Why Moon-young acts in such a peculiar manner is the main mystery of "Moon Young", although the minimalist nature of the production is such that the answers offered are, by design, unimpressive. The film closes out with a surprise encounter on the subway that is, more than anything else, rather ominous...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Photography and Art

2017/02/19 | Permalink

Korea's Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism gets behind "Concept Korea" at New York Fashion Week, learn more about the rise in popularity of Korea's "monochrome" movement, Do Ho Suh creates "fabric architecture" of his past homes, and The Korea Times interviews the president of The Korea National University of Arts (K-Arts)...More

"The Legend of the Blue Sea" ends today, will Jun Ji-hyun and Lee Min-ho have a happy ending?

Source | 2017/01/24 | Permalink

The die is out. With one more episode to go, fans of "The Legend of the Blue Sea" wonder what the ending is going to be.

"The Legend of the Blue Sea" has been playing hard to get and it's almost impossible to guess if the drama will end on a happy note or not...More

SBS Drama Awards 2016 Winners

2016/12/31 | Permalink

SBS Drama Awards 2016 winners' list...More

53rd Daejong Film Awards (Grand Bell Awards) 2016 Winners

2016/12/27 | Permalink

53rd Daejong Film Awards (Grand Bell Awards) 2016 winners during the ceremony presented by Kim Byeong-chan, Gong Seo-young and Lee Tae-im...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Food Lovers' Lane

2016/12/17 | Permalink

My Korean Kitchen dishes up dessert, a kimchi master shares his love, explore Seoul's oldest restaurants with Seoulistic, and discover twenty shades of Korean drinks with CNN Travel...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Cinema Snippets

2016/12/03 | Permalink

The Indian Express interviews Im Kwon-taek about his career and thoughts on Bollywood, see how the recent protests in Korea have impacted the nation's dream machine, Lee Kyoung-mi talks about some of the challenges female filmmakers face, and Kim Hyung-seok explores the trend of fantasy in modern Korean cinema...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Cinema Snippets

2016/11/26 | Permalink

Hangul Cinema's podcast reflects on "Memories of Murder", Kobiz presents the highest-grossing Korean films in America, Im Kwon-taek honoured in India, and the Guardian reviews Yeon Sang-ho's zombie blockbuster...More

Your favorite K-drama stars - Did you know they are best friends IRL?

2016/11/09 | Permalink

To talk about South Korea's celebrity best friends irl (in real life), we can't forget the famous Song Joong-ki and Lee Kwang-soo duo! Their friendship started as they appeared together in a variety show called Running Man. These same age actors, brand new to the entertainment business, quickly grew very close to each other. Soon, they even acted together in a drama "Nice Guy" as best friends in the show. Since then, their friendship passed the stage of just "best friends", they are more like brothers at this point...More

1 in 4 New Mothers Over 35

Source | 2016/08/28 | Permalink

One out of every four new mothers in Korea is 35 or older as more and more tie the knot later in life.

Statistics Korea on Wednesday said 23.9 percent of all women who gave birth last year were over 35, up from 21.6 percent in 2014 and just 4.7 percent in 1995...More

[Spoiler] 'Doctors' Kim Rae-won and Park Shin-hye overcome wounds and live together happily ever after

Source | 2016/08/23 | Permalink

The final episode of SBS' "Doctors" showed the huge success in both love and work that Ji-hong and Hye-jeong achieved together.

On this day, Ji-hong (Kim Rae-won) and Hye-jeong (Park Shin-hye) carried out the operation on Myeong-hoon (Uhm Hyo-sup), who was their lifetime enemy...More

Park In-bee Overcomes Injury to Win Gold in Women's Golf in Rio

Source | 2016/08/22 | Permalink

Park In-bee reacts after winning the gold medal in women's golf at the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil on Saturday. /Yonhap

Park In-bee won the gold medal in women's golf on Saturday at the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil with a 16-under-par 268.

Lydia Ko of New Zealand won silver and bronze went to China's Shanshan Feng. Yang Hee-young came fourth, while Chun In-gee and Kim Sei-young finished 13th and 25th respectively...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Photography and Art

2016/08/20 | Permalink

Hear how artist Haegue Yang is passionately unconventional in her approach to her work-life, The Korea Herald has a packed arts and entertainment calendar to diarise, learn more about the history of pottery in Korea, and photographer Lee Myoung-ho captures space-time his own way...More

Record Numbers Preparing for Public-Sector Jobs

Source | 2016/07/24 | Permalink

Record numbers of young Koreans are preparing to sit the exam for safe civil-service jobs, and almost twice as many say they hope to work in the public sector as in private enterprise.

According to Statistics Korea on Thursday, 39.3 percent or 256,000 of the country's 6.52 million jobseekers between 15 to 29 are preparing to take civil service exams. That is a record and up 35,000 from only a year ago. Only around 140,000 are preparing to apply for jobs in private businesses...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Night Song"

2016/07/23 | Permalink

Situated a bit to the north of Jeonju with its very own rail station, Samrye appears to be, from my cursory analysis of Naver maps, a random college town. Admittedly, I've never been there. In "Night Song", though, Samrye appears to be something else entirely- an all-encompassing void lacking in both loud sparkle and quiet contemplation. It is here that aspiring film director Seung-woo (played by Lee Sun-ho) meets waitress Hee-in (played by Kim Bo-ra) and they set off in search of...something...More

With or without bangs, still beautiful

Source | 2016/06/23 | Permalink

Park Shin-hye, Lee Sung-kyung and Sulli have something in common and that is that they make others want to get bangs too.

Getting short hair or letting the hair grow as well as getting bangs or not is a lifetime concern for women. It's not easy to get bangs as once it's cut, it takes a long time to grow it back out...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "One Way Trip"

2016/06/11 | Permalink

Yong-bi (played by Ji Soo), Sang-woo (played by Suho), Ji-gong (played by Ryu Jun-yeol), and Doo-man (played by Kim Hee-chan) are four friends on the cusp of adulthood. After some basic explanation establishing the situation of the four young men in life as well as their basic personalities, they set off on an adventure mostly for the sake of relieving stress. Leaving the confines of high school may be grounds for excitement, yet it is also an exercise in suddenly realizing the world is a dangerous place with tragic long term consequences...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Reach for the SKY"

2016/06/11 | Permalink

In South Korea, education is a pretty big deal. Getting into a good college can be seen as the make it or break it moment that defines an entire lifetime. "Reach For The SKY" is a documentary that explores the lives of three families with college age kids who try and hope for a positive outcome in the days leading up to the College Scholastic Ability Test. Though all hope for entry into one of the SKY schools (Seoul National University, Korea University, Yonsei University), in the end the fatigue of the process makes them willing to settle for just about anything...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Entertainers" Episode 15

2016/06/09 | Permalink

The elements of "Entertainers" that make it poignant are also its weak points. Ji Sung is powerful in his delivery of melodrama and tears, the crying is appropriately moving, and the conflict is well set-up, if a bit slow. And that's the crux of the matter: everything is a bit slow and tends to perseverate.

In real life, tragedy is consuming and the person suffering from tragedy may take years to a lifetime to deal with that tragedy...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Travel Bug Bites

2016/06/03 | Permalink

The Korea Tourism Organisation releases a new guide for tourists in various languages, discover why South Korea is perfect for family travel, check out six top travel blogs/websites, and The Korea Times has a host of exciting events happening around town...More

Actor Jung Jin passes away after long struggle with bladder cancer

Source | 2016/06/02 | Permalink

Actor Jung Jin (Jeong Soo-hwang) passed away at the age of 74.

He passed away on the 2nd and his memorial is being held at the Seoul Asan Hospital...More

[HanCinema's Korea Diaries] "Gamgok" May 6th-7th

2016/05/21 | Permalink

Next on my itinerary to return to Seoul via the most unnecessarily complicated route was Gamgok, which is located to the north of Jincheon in Eumseong County. Gamgok District (감곡면) is farmland. Peaches are the main crop grown there. Unfortunately the peaches are not in bloom in May so Gamgok looks rather nondescript right this minute. It's the kind of township where solar panels look really cool, simply because they're different from most of what else is available to look at...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "The Royal Gambler" Episode 12

2016/05/03 | Permalink

"The Royal Gambler" continues to hold steady in second place as its rating rises to 9.2%. Seol Im returns to add another wheel to the love quadrangle, but her character is rich and and example of a strong woman. Our brothers grow closer in a way that makes me think we're in for heartache in the future - it's too good to be true.

Both brothers are rough and tough on the outside, but inwardly respect each other and their mutual goals...More

'Saimdang: Light's Diary' Hong Seok-cheon takes selfie with Lee Young-ae

Source | 2016/04/28 | Permalink

Hong Seok-cheon revealed his duo selfie shot he took along with Lee Young-ae.

On April 28th, Hong Seok-cheon shared the photo of himself and Lee Young-ae on his personal Instagram. Lee Young-ae's shy look with her eyes closed and Hong Seok-cheon's comical gesture are drawing attention...More

Chunsa Film Art Awards 2016 Winners

Source | 2016/04/06 | Permalink

Chunsa Film Art Awards 2016 winners list...More

[HanCinema's Korea Joa] Goodbye Korea Joa, And Thank You!

2016/02/27 | Permalink

Korea Joa 2015 organized by KOFICE happened in October 2015. It is now February 2016 and I've only now finished my articles on that wonderful adventure. It feels like it is only now ending. In case you're new to my Korea Joa coverage, HanCinema was invited as one of fifteen world sites on Korean culture, Kpop, K-drama, and K-film to represent the international journalist community...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Moorim School" Episode 11

2016/02/22 | Permalink

"Moorim School" episode 11 is all about looking within to find the answers. There is a big competition going on and everyone is vying to win, but winning isn't the answer. To attain the keys to the Chintamani is the outward goal, but the true teachers at the Moorim School want their students to find strength within to protect those dear to them.

Si-woo is struggling to control a rare power that he possesses...More

[HanCinema's Drama Preview] "Please Come Back, Mister"

2016/02/20 | Permalink

Body swapping is nothing new in Korean drama, but you have to admit that the idea of turning Kim In-kwon and Kim Soo-ro into Rain and Oh Yun-soo sounds very fun. The series is shaping up to be a hilarious and hopefully heartwarming one too, as "Please Come Back, Mister" deals with life and death situations quite literally...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Hwang Jin Yi" + DVD Giveaway

2016/02/20 | Permalink

Jin Yi (played by Song Hye-kyo) eventually becomes one of Korea's greatest poets, though she is technically a fallen woman, having become a courtesan with the somewhat unusual background of an upper class education. But once upon a time, Jin Yi was just a little girl with curiousity about the world. This curiousity ends up mingled with horror, as Jin Yi discovers the darkness hidden behind the opulence of wealth, and even the secret of her own birth. From there, Jin Yi feels like she has only one choice- to find her own way...More

Actor Kang Ha-neul in "DongJu, The Portrait of a Poet"

Source | 2016/02/16 | Permalink

Kang Ha-neul can be said to be the best actor when it comes to portraying youth these days. He played Lee Hyo-sin in "The Heirs", Jang Baek-ki in "Incomplete Life", Booma Jin in "Empire of Lust" and Kyeong-jae in "Twenty".

Kang Ha-neul is another youth in "DongJu, The Portrait of A Poet". He is Yoon Dong-ju, a young man who dreamt of being a poet during the Japanese Invasion when name, language, dreams and everything else was under control...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Where Is My Son?"

2016/01/09 | Permalink

In the rural outskirts of Andong a seventy-year old man pushes his ninety-five year old mother home in her wheelchair. And that's about all there is to "Where Is My Son??"- a documentary focused almost entirely on ambience. There's the love between a son and his mother, the sense of peace that comes as the elderly mother slowly but steadily moves toward the end of her life, and then there are the visuals of rural Andong, where traditional architecture and greenery overwhelms every shot...More

SBS Drama Awards 2015 Winners

2015/12/31 | Permalink

SBS Drama Awards 2015 winners list...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Photography and Art

2015/12/26 | Permalink

Get your academic brain in gear as Crystal explores colour in K-pop; see how one blogging couple captured their trip of a lifetime; a photographer shares his story about shooting in North Korea, and see how the world got ready for Christmas this year...More

"Bubble Gum" Lee Dong-wook, "Happy and good memories"

Source | 2015/12/15 | Permalink

Actor Lee Dong-wook is sad to see the tvN drama "Bubble Gum" end.

King Kong Entertainment revealed a message from 'Park Ri-hwan' Lee Dong-wook and behind the scene pictures...More

[HanCinema's Digest] Travel Bug Bites

2015/12/06 | Permalink

Watch Gu-Hyeon travel home to North Korea after decades away, Will Fly For Free has some tips for first-time travelers, Seoulistic presents their top fifty attractions and how to get there, and find about Korea's many temples you can visit...More

Actor Lee Hee-joon and model Lee Hye-jung are getting married

Source | 2015/12/04 | Permalink

Actor model couple, Lee Hee-joon and Lee Hye-jung are getting married

Actor Lee Hee-joon's agency BH Entertainment told MBN Star on December 4th, "Since both of them are of age to think about marriage sincerely and the relationship between the two became so strong, they've decided to get married naturally"...More

52nd Daejong Film Awards (Grand Bell Awards) 2015 Winners

2015/11/20 | Permalink

52nd Daejong Film Awards (Grand Bell Awards) 2015 winners during the ceremony presented by Shin Hyun-joon and Han Go-eun...More

Former After School member, Lee Joo-yeon joins Jo In-sung in movie 'The King'

Source | 2015/11/12 | Permalink

Former After School member Lee Joo-yeon has been cast for movie, "The King".

According to sources in film industry on November 12th, Lee Joo-yeon will star in the upcoming movie, "The King" starring Jo In-sung as the leading actor and directed by Han Jae-rim. Lee Joo-yeon's character will play an important role in moving forward the plots and developing events in the movie...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "City of Fathers" + DVD Giveaway

2015/10/10 | Permalink

Kang-soo (played by Ko Chang-seok) used to have a decent job. Then he became kind of a hopeless screw-up. The catalyst for this was Jong-cheol (played by Yoo Seung-ho)- or more specifically the awkward circumstances regarding the poor teenager's birth. In the present day Jong-cheol tries, mostly ineffectively, to try and prevent Kang-soo from spiraling too hopelessly into oblivion but there's not that much to be done. Kang-soo is a fairly lousy parent, and he has to be brought down pretty low to finally do the right thing...More

Tracing back 3,500 kilometers to home country

Source | 2015/09/20 | Permalink

I was told that my grandmother used to have sore eyes from crying day and night, missing her second son, Kim Gyeong-soo (aged 65) said in tears while he was telling the story of his late grandmother. In the arms of Kim was the urn of ashes of his uncle Kim Ik-jung at Sumireu Park in front of Busan Port Passenger Terminal at 11:00 a.m. on Friday. His uncle who used to live in Gochang County, North Jeolla Province was taken by Japanese soldiers to Hokkaido in 1942. Back then, he was 18 years old. We were informed that my uncle died from a bombing attack two years after he had worked in construction sites in Japa...More

Upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"

Source | 2015/09/12 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean movie "Memoir of a Murderer"'s page to HanCinema database...More

[Spoiler] 'The Merchant: Gaekju 2015' Jang Hyuk, Jung Tae-woo grab each other by the collar at their first encounter

Source | 2015/09/04 | Permalink

An intensive scene from "The Merchant: Gaekju 2015" is drawing attention, where Jang Hyuk and Jung Tae-woo grabbed each other by the collar at their first encounter.

As "The Merchant: Gaekju 2015" is scheduled to begin on September 23rd, Jang Hyuk and Jung Tae-woo will present their adventurous journey together as sworn brothers of loyalty thicker than blood...More

Jin Tae-hyun and Park Si-eun choose to volunteer instead of honeymoon

Source | 2015/08/06 | Permalink

This angel couple decided to do charity work instead of going on their honeymoon.

Jin Tae-hyun posted on his Instagram on the 7th saying, "We are returning to Seoul after 6 days and 5 nights in Jeju Island. We spent 4 days with some angels"...More

Won Bin is going to be a dad!

Source | 2015/08/03 | Permalink

Actor actress couple Won Bin and Lee Na-young are going to be parents.

On August 3rd, the couple's agency Eden 9 announced Lee Na-young's pregnancy news...More

Madonna (2015)

Source | 2015/07/04 | Permalink


Genres: Drama

Running Time: 120 min.

Directed by: Shin Su-won

Starring: Seo Young-hee, Kwon So-hyun-I, Kim Young-min

Synopsis: Hye-rim, a 35-year-old woman, finds a job at a hospital as a caregiver assigned to a quadriplegic VIP patient who practically owns the hospital. For the past 10 years, the VIP patient's son Sang-woo has been desperately keeping him alive for money, ordering the doctors to perform several heart transplants despite recurrent heart failures. In need of another one, Sang-woo takes a brain dead unidentified woman as a donor and asks Hye-rim to look into her background. She discovers that the woman was once a prostitute known as Madonna who has experienced a lifetime of abuse, and that she is pregnant. In an attempt to save Madonna's unborn child, Hye-rim goes against Sang-woo's orders and searches for the baby's father...More

"The Piper" Lee Joon, "It was tough to kill the cat"

Source | 2015/07/02 | Permalink

Actor Lee Joon claims it was tough to film the scene where he killed a cat.

The press conference for the movie "The Piper" was held on the 2nd with producer Kim Gwang-tae, actors Ryu Seung-ryong, Lee Sung-min, Lee Joon and actress Chun Woo-hee...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Remember You" Episode 2

2015/06/23 | Permalink

The chain of events that explains how Hyeon came into his present-day position as an eccentric professor are mostly clearly defined. His motivations are what's more difficult to grasp. In most dramas the death of a father and the disappearance of a younger brother would be the spur to a lifetime of seeking revenge. Yet bizarrely, Hyeon doesn't even seem to be taking these events all that personally. It's the psychology of motivation that keeps Hyeon engaged rather than any kind of emotional attachment...More

Seo Young-hee, why she refused any sponsorship for her secret wedding

Source | 2015/06/18 | Permalink

Seo Young-hee revealed why she refused any sponsorship for her wedding.

Actress Seo Young-hee had an interview with News N regarding her newest film "Madonna" and her wedding...More

Korean movies opening today 2015/06/11 in Korea

Source | 2015/06/11 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2015/06/11 in Korea: "A Midsummer's Fantasia", "Lover - 2015" and "Outing"...More

Upcoming Korean movie "Lover - 2015"

Source | 2015/06/05 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean movie "Lover - 2015"'s page to HanCinema database...More

Korean movies opening today 2015/06/04 in Korea

Source | 2015/06/04 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2015/06/04 in Korea: "Perfect Proposal", "Crown Princess Hong", "My Fair Wedding", and "The Outsider: Mean Streets"...More

[Photos] Added new stills for the Korean movie 'Lover - 2015'

Source | 2015/06/03 | Permalink

Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Lover - 2015"...More

Won Bin and Lee Na-young's 'small wedding'

Source | 2015/05/31 | Permalink

Won Bin and Lee Na-young got married. They are a top star couple also known as the Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie of Korea. The two of them got married in a quiet village and had a small wedding without the fuss of having a huge top star wedding. Why though?

There are a few things that can be mentioned when it comes to top star weddings. Media and the spotlight, a luxury hotel wedding hall with celebrity guests who look like they're going to an award show and more fanciness and fuss than a regular wedding are some. The wedding alone is confusion enough but it's true that celebrities have more pressure on their shoulders when their wedding becomes the hottest topic not only in the showbiz but publicly as well...More

Won Bin and Lee Na-young tied the knot in secret

Source | 2015/05/30 | Permalink

On May 30, actor Won Bin, 38, and actress Lee Na-young, 36, were married through a private wedding ceremony in Jeongseon, Kangwon-do, where only family members attended.

Won Bin and Lee Na-young's agency, Eden Nine said, "Today (May 30), the two loving lifetime partners made their very first step together on a small unnamed trail midst a wheat field in Kangwon-do" and "After the wedding ceremony, they set an iron cast pot in the middle of the field and shared warm noodles with their family members"...More

[Photos] Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"

Source | 2015/05/29 | Permalink

Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"...More

Bae Yong-joon and Park Soo-jin, sweet and cute on SNS and outside

Source | 2015/05/27 | Permalink

Bae Yong-joon and Park Soo-jin, who are going to wed this fall, are making the online community happy with their cute battle to leave the first comment on their own SNS postings.

On May 27th, Bae Yong-joon posted on his personal Instagram, "Thank you for so many congratulations and blessings. I'm just being thankful for having found my lifetime partner. I'll greet you again at our happy wedding ^^. Have a great day!"...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Make a Woman Cry" Episode 12

2015/05/24 | Permalink

Kyeong-cheol has many flaws, but the worst of them has to be that the guy's just not that smart. Last cliffhanger he "discovered" that Deok-in was having an affair with Jin-woo. A more farsighted person might have realized that Deok-in finding a boyfriend is a good thing. It makes Deok-in less likely to try to cling to the marriage. Which, consequently, would make it easier for Kyeong-cheol to get a divorce and finally marry Jin-hee. So how does Kyeong-cheol use this information?...More

[Photos] Added characters poster and new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"

Source | 2015/05/18 | Permalink

Added characters poster and new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"...More

Jo In-sung to return to big screen with 'The King'

Source | 2015/05/14 | Permalink

It seems that actor Jo In-sung will return to the big screen in seven years, as he is positively discussing about his appearance in director Han Jae-rim's new project, 'The King' at the moment.

An official from his agency IOK Entertainment told OSEN on May 14th, "He has not completed the last stage of the contract yet. However he's looking into the offer positively"...More

[Video] Added new official trailer and stills for the Korean movie 'Perfect Proposal'

Source | 2015/05/11 | Permalink

Added new official trailer and stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Unkind Women" Episode 13

2015/05/08 | Permalink

I'm not a fan of some of the twists and turns in this week's episode of "Unkind Women". They were overly dramatic. The construction of the web of relationships in the drama is already a bit difficult to believe, so turning Mo-ran into a desperate woman in the twilight of her life is too dramatic a move. There are enough coincidental and unbelievable events to fill a lifetime without the addition of her dramatics.

Mo-ran has been seeking forgiveness from Soon-ok so that she can die in peace...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Make a Woman Cry" Episode 5

2015/05/02 | Permalink

This episode is the one where the title really hits an accurate mark. While Deok-in might be a hard-boiled ex-detective who's good in a fight, ultimately, we constantly see that all she really wants to do is cry. It's not something Deok-in can do with her husband's family, because to a large extent they expect Deok-in to just be a pillar of support. It is something that she can do with Jin-woo, mostly because he happens to be there when she breaks down...More

[Video] Added new trailer and poster for the Korean movie 'Perfect Proposal'

Source | 2015/04/20 | Permalink

Added new trailer and poster for the upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Unkind Women" Episode 5

2015/04/17 | Permalink

"Unkind Women" is delving into Hyeon-sook's past and from that burgeoning knowledge comes the reason why she has been so strict with the brilliant Ma-ri. We also learn more about Hyeon-sook's enemy, and about the pain that has plagued Soon-ok for thirty years.

This is the point when "Unkind Women" feels like it's truly starting to take off...More

[Spoiler] 'The Queen's Flower' Kim Sung-ryung is convinced by Lee Jong-hyuk's nice gestures?

Source | 2015/04/04 | Permalink

On the 7th episode of MBC's weekend drama, "The Queen's Flower", Kim Sung-ryung was swayed by Lee Jong-hyuk's goodwill gestures.

Rena Jeong (Kim Sung-ryung) fell asleep in Park Min-joon (Lee Jong-hyuk)' car while she was getting a ride from him. She told him "I fell asleep again. Well, I always get to show the ugly side of myself. Thank you for today, bye" and then she got off his car...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Punch - Drama" Episode 19 (final)

2015/03/23 | Permalink

"Punch - Drama" is over and I'm feeling a little numb. What a ride it gave me. It was one of the strongest dramas I've seen, despite a few live shoot glitches. The writing was more than solid - it was inspired. The acting was heartfelt, the direction was clear and clean. Mostly, it was the impeccable writing and the ability of the writer/director pairing to keep the story, and me, on our toes, as each expectation was subverted, played upon and turned into another exciting event.

With the constant tension and battles between Jung-hwan and his enemies, there was barely a second to breathe ...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Family Outing" Episode 20

2015/03/15 | Permalink

The cliffhanger is resolved mostly unsurprisingly and uninspiredly. This much is to be expected given that "Family Outing" has now gone into full epilogue mode. Kkeut-soon has dementia, and as we see, it only really gets worse as times goes on. The main interesting hook here is that the dementia element actually does end up getting used in the larger storyline rather well- we finally get to see the full animated short than Dong-seok made, and it's probably not quite what you're expecting...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Hogu's Love" Episode 10

2015/03/10 | Permalink

Now that Kang-cheol has been all but definitively cleared in terms of not being the baby's father, I'm increasingly unsure what purpose he's actually supposed to be serving in the story. Most of this episode is just comedic hijinx at Kang-cheol's obvious expense. If he was the father I could call this just desserts. As stands, though, "Hogu's Love" is just acting kind of mean. Contrary to what was implied earlier on it looks like Kang-cheol is only involved with this case at all because he, too, has an unresolved emotional attachment to the baby's real father...More

Lee Byung-hun returns, "I'm indebted to Lee Min-jung"

Source | 2015/02/26 | Permalink


 Actor Lee Byung-hun left words of apology as soon as he arrived.

Lee Byung-hun arrived at Incheon International Airport on the 26th with wife and actress Lee Min-jung. He stood in front of the press to say, "A long time has passed because of my foolishness. I have caused a lifetime debt to my wife and family"...More

[HanCinema's Image Gallery] "Han Gong-ju" @ 24fps

2015/02/21 | Permalink

Lee Su-jin's "Han Gong-ju" @ 24fps...

There are so many films flashing furiously past our eyes nowadays that it's hard to remember some of the devilish details, moments, and ideas from our favourite features. Add to that all the music videos, T.V. series, news broadcasts, digital advertisements, YouTube playlists and gaming, and it might well start to feel like there's an insurmountable backlog of compelling content, and you'd be right (sooner or later). Our lifetime is slowly being replaced by digital dream streams that if we were to watch all the classics, the critically acclaimed, personal recommendations and cultural must-sees, our lives would no longer have a convincing anchor in reality, and screen-time would be our only time...More

Korean drama of the week "The Man of the Vineyard"

Source | 2015/02/12 | Permalink

Korean drama of the week "The Man of the Vineyard" (2006)

Directed by Park Man-yeong

Written by Jo Myeong-joo

Network  : KBS

With Yoon Eun-hye, Oh Man-seok, Kim Ji-suk, Jung So-young, Song Eun-chae, Kim Chang-wan,...

16 episodes - Mon, Tue 21:55
Sassy City Girl VS Simple Country Boy Money means everything to Ji-hyeon, a city girl, and one day she gets an opportunity of a lifetime. She is to receive an acre of vineyard if she works on the farm for one year! What's waiting for Ji-hyeon is an unknown country boy, Taek-gi. Two totally different people are in for a trouble but cupid finds them out of nowhere...More

C'est Si Bon (2014)

Source | 2015/02/08 | Permalink

"C'est Si Bon"

Genres: Drama and Romance

Running Time: 123 min.

Directed by: Kim Hyun-seok

Starring: Kim Yun-seok, Jung Woo, Han Hyo-joo, Kim Hee-ae

Synopsis: In the late 1960s, C'est Si Bon is the music bar where every acoustic band's dream lies. There Geun-tae, a naïve country boy, meets the young musical prodigies Hyung-joo and Chang-sik, and forms the band named after it -- the C'est Si Bon Trio. As the three young artists bicker over their music, beautiful socialite Ja-young enters the picture and becomes their muse, and a series of moving love songs come from it. Geun-tae's pure-heartedness wins Ja-young over but when she accepts a once-in-lifetime opportunity for a shot at an acting career, they part ways. After 20 years, the untold story of their love, song, and youth at C'est Si Bon is finally brought to light...More

Korean movies opening today 2015/02/05 in Korea

Source | 2015/02/05 | Permalink

[Spoiler] 'Sensible Love' Uhm Tae-woong says to Lee Soo-hyuk, "Thank you"

Source | 2015/02/03 | Permalink

Uhm Tae-woong said farewell to Lee Soo-hyuk.

On the last episode of tvN drama, 'Sensible Love', Jang Hee-tae (Uhm Tae-woong) went to see Kim Joon (Lee Soo-hyuk)...More

[Photos] Added new posters for the Korean movie 'C'est Si Bon'

Source | 2015/02/02 | Permalink

Added new posters for the upcoming Korean movie "C'est Si Bon"...More

[Spoiler] 'The Legendary Witch' Kim Soo-mi tricks Byun Jung-soo perfectly

Source | 2015/01/31 | Permalink

On the 29th episode of MBC weekend drama, 'The Legendary Witch', it featured Kim Young-ok (Kim Soo-mi)'s imposture trick in order to retrieve the cellphone from Ma Joo-ran (Byun Jung-soo).

Kim Yeong-ok met her and apologized first saying, "I am sorry to bother you while you are so busy. We should have sent you people instead...More

[HanCinema's Image Gallery] "JEON WOO CHI : The Taoist Wizard" @ 24fps

2015/01/31 | Permalink

Choi Dong-hoon's "JEON WOO CHI: The Taoist Wizard" @ 24fps...

There are so many films flashing furiously past our eyes nowadays that it's hard to remember some of the devilish details, moments, and ideas from our favourite features. Add to that all the music videos, T.V. series, news broadcasts, digital advertisements, YouTube playlists and gaming, and it might well start to feel like there's an insurmountable backlog of compelling content, and you'd be right (sooner or later). Our lifetime is slowly being replaced by digital dream streams that if we were to watch all the classics, the critically acclaimed, personal recommendations and cultural must-sees, our lives would no longer have a convincing anchor in reality, and screen-time would be our only time...More

[Photos] Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "C'est Si Bon"

Source | 2015/01/29 | Permalink

Added new stills for the upcoming Korean movie "C'est Si Bon"...More

[HanCinema's Image Gallery] "The Admiral: Roaring Currents" @ 24fps

2015/01/17 | Permalink

Kim Han-min's "The Admiral: Roaring Currents" @ 24fps…

There are so many films flashing furiously past our eyes nowadays that it's hard to remember some of the devilish details, moments, and ideas from our favourite features. Add to that all the music videos, T.V. series, news broadcasts, digital advertisements, YouTube playlists and gaming, and it might well start to feel like there's an insurmountable backlog of compelling content, and you'd be right (sooner or later). Our lifetime is slowly being replaced by digital dream streams that if we were to watch all the classics, the critically acclaimed, personal recommendations and cultural must-sees, our lives would no longer have a convincing anchor in reality, and screen-time would be our only time...More

[Interview] Yoo Ji-tae, "How can love change?"

Source | 2015/01/06 | Permalink

Yoo Ji-tae said the words, "How can love change?" in the movie "One Fine Spring Day" but he proved love doesn't have to change with his lifetime partner Kim Hyo-jin. In the movie "The Tenor Lirico Spinto" in which he stars as a genius tenor who's lost his voice, his favorite song is 'As Si Ben Mio' which means "Oh My Love". It's not an overstatement to say he's the god of love.

Q: We know you to have knowledge about classical music...More

SBS Drama Awards 2014 Winners

2014/12/31 | Permalink

SBS Drama Awards 2014 winners list...More

KBS Drama Awards 2014 Winners

2014/12/31 | Permalink

KBS Drama Awards 2014 winners' list...More

'KBS Drama Awards' Best New Actor and Actress awards for Seo In-guk Park Hyung-sik Kim Seul-gi Nam Ji-hyun

Source | 2014/12/31 | Permalink

Actors Seo In-guk and Park Hyung-sik and actresses Kim Seul-gi and Nam Ji-hyun were co-awarded Best New Actor and Actress Awards from the KBS Drama Awards, which took place at KBS Hall, Seoul on December 31, 2014.

Seo In-guk said accepting his award "Thank you, all the staff as well as the people from my agency for working so hard behind the scenes. I would run out of time to say each name here so I'll call everyone later. Thank you for giving me this Best New Actor Award, the once in a lifetime award. I will continue to work hard until the ending of "The King's Face" trying to make it perfect...More

MBC Drama Awards 2014 Winners

2014/12/30 | Permalink

MBC Drama Awards 2014 winners list...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Birth of a Beauty" Episode 15

2014/12/20 | Permalink

At first, I thought the outrageous speed with which Tae-hee is trying to set up a wedding is a little off-putting. Then I realized that, you know what, this guy loves plans. And a convoluted plan to set up a wedding on Christmas on short notice is exactly the kind of exciting convoluted prospect he can only ever hope to run into once in a lifetime. Tae-hee really is a fun protagonist. The man's just so upbeat, so in a hurry to get the job done, because why waste a single minute of this amazing experience called life for boring dramatic reasons?...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Pororo, The Snow Fairy Village Adventure" and "Awaiting"

2014/12/05 | Permalink

This holiday season marks the release of two unusually short films in Korean theaters. Both are worth your time, albeit for very different reasons. First up is "Pororo, The Snow Fairy Village Adventure". As the titles implies, the lovable penguin goes off with his friends to a snow fairy village to have an adventure. Yes, this is obviously a cartoon intended for children. If you're one of those humorless folks who hates anything not intended to directly please superior adult brains only just skip the next couple of paragraphs...More

51th Grand Bell Awards (Daejong Film Awards)

2014/11/21 | Permalink

51th Grand Bell Awards (Daejong Film Awards) winners...More

Im Kwon-taek to Receive Award at Singapore Film Fest

Source | 2014/10/30 | Permalink

Veteran director Im Kwon-taek will receive an award for his lifetime achievements at this year's Singapore International Film Festival which opens early December. The award ceremony will take place on Dec. 13.

The festival's organizing committee said Im, who made more than 100 films over the past 50 years, has been chosen as a recipient of the honorary award for this year's film festival in recognition of his lifelong contribution to the Asian film industry as well as Korean cinema...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Secret Door" Episode 9

2014/10/24 | Permalink

Thirst for power has consumed King Yeongjo's heart. He is such a fascinating and rich character. Despite the fact that he knows what he does is wrong and it goes against his conscience and his feelings for Seon, he does it anyway. He is willing to sacrifice even his own flesh and blood for the throne he gained through similar sacrifice.

It seems like "Secret Door" is trying to make a martyr of Seon when history paints a darker picture...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Secret Door" Episode 1

2014/09/26 | Permalink

"Secret Door" is based on one of the most famous stories in Korean history: the story of Crown Prince Sado and his father, King Yeongjo. It is a tragic tale that has been re-created many times. The circumstances surrounding the lives and deaths of the father and son pair are shrouded in mystery despite multiple (differing) accounts of Sado's contemporaries. "Secret Door" is putting its own spin on the story, which thus far is exciting and fast-paced.

All the well-known figures in history have made their appearance, played by a remarkably strong cast...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "The Night Watchman's Journal" Episode 16

2014/09/23 | Permalink

There's an actual story here, surprisingly enough. As usual it's pretty easy to point out the general inconsistencies. One would think that given the main characters have a ghost detecting machine, a guy whose entire job is a lifetime of experience of dealing with ghosts, and three actual ghosts with nothing better to do than stand guard at all hours, it would be pretty difficult to demonically possess one of the main characters. Still, one of these prevention devices does eventually work, even if it takes the whole episode.

The trajectory of the story here is actually a pretty passable one...More

Korean movie of the week "Miss Granny"

Source | 2014/07/24 | Permalink

Korean movie of the week "Miss Granny" (2014)

Directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk

With Shim Eun-kyung, Na Moon-hee, Park In-hwan, Sung Dong-il, Lee Jin-wook, Kim Hyun-sook,...

Formerly known as "Suspicious Girl" on HanCinema
Oh Mal-Soon (Na Moon-hee) is a 74-year-old widow that realizes she is becoming a burden on her family. As she is roaming the streets, she comes across a photo studio and decides to dress up for a self- portrait. When she walks out of the photo studio, she mysteriously turns back into her twenty year old self. Making the most out of this one in a lifetime opportunity, she changes her name to Oh Doo-Ri (Shim Eun-kyung) and decides to make the most out of her youth...More

"For The Emperor" Lee Min-ki kisses Lee Tae-im

Source | 2014/05/01 | Permalink

A teaser of the new movie "For The Emperor" has been revealed.

"For The Emperor" is an action noir movie based in Busan about two men who struggle to become the emperor in the same kind of world. Lee Min-ki and Park Sung-woong display the poster. The two of them emit two different kinds of charisma in the poster...More

[Guest Review] "Emergency Couple" 1-10

2014/04/26 | Permalink

[WARNING: If you even suspect you might suffer a brain aneurysm if someone suggested that the prime couple in a romantic drama should not be reunited at the end of a series, particularly this one. I strongly suggest you skip this post.]

Fairly recently I watched two Korean dramas that seemed to hold promise in their cast selection and in their probable scenarios. However, long before the end of each I was sorely disappointed. I considered both outright failures albeit for differing reasons. So these and other experiences color my views of the "Emergency Couple", perhaps just a bit unfairly.

Here is a generic listing of my complaints about the failings of too many Korean romantic comedy / dramas:

I have watched too many bad Korean dramas, seen too many lame plot lines filled with inconsistent actions. Add in illogical, vile and out of context speeches that are not character driven. When a character's motivations seem to be absent or devoid of any logic other than the writer's need for a plot twist to prolong a weak story line I lose patience...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "A Little Monk" + Giveaway

2014/04/18 | Permalink

This movie depicts the dark side of Buddhism. I don't mean anything so cliched as monks driven mad by spiritual rights, jumping headfirst into the most grotesque hedony imaginable. "A Little Monk" goes into much more ambiguous territory, by giving us characters who don't actually seem to like Buddhism all that much, and yet they appear to have been forced into the faith by circumstance and don't really have any way of getting out...More

Fewer and Fewer Children Born in Korea

Source | 2014/03/02 | Permalink

Some 436,600 children were born in Korea last year, the smallest number recorded since 2005, Statistics Korea said on Thursday. Compared to 2012, the number dropped 9.9 percent from 484,550.

The total fertility rate, the number of children that would be born to a woman in her lifetime, stood at 1.19 children last year, even fewer than the 1.3 recorded in 2012...More

[Star Interview] Lee Yoon-ji, "The Wang Family" welcomed me to my 30's"

Source | 2014/02/26 | Permalink

She took on the role of Wang Gwang-park, the third daughter in The Wang Family. She co-starred with her partner Han Joo-wan and made everyone come together with her romantic act.

"The Wang Family" has always been brought up for its dramatic topic and layout. The viewing percentage was phenomenal. A staggering 48.3% was recorded by Nielsen Korea. Lee Yoon-ji learned wisdom of life and drew out her life strategy during this time.

▲How does it feel to have completed a drama which half the nation watched?...More

Korean movies opening today 2014/01/23 in Korea

Source | 2014/01/23 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2014/01/23 in Korea; "Hot Young Bloods", "Miss Granny", "Stray Dogs", "The Dinner"...More

[Video] Teaser released for the Korean movie 'Miss Granny'

Source | 2014/01/23 | Permalink

Teaser released for the Korean movie "Miss Granny"...More

South Korea's "Miss Granny" is coming to N. American Theaters starting on January 24th!

2014/01/21 | Permalink

South Korea's "Miss Granny" (dir. Hwang Dong-hyuk) is coming to N. American theaters starting on January 24th! The movie will be released in Los Angeles (CGV Cinemas), and other theaters in New York (Bay Terrace) and New Jersey (Edgewater Multiplex) will be screening it on January 31st...More

Upcoming Korean movie "Perfect Proposal"

Source | 2014/01/03 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean movie "Secret Temptation"'s page to HanCinema database...More

SBS Drama Awards 2013 Winners

2013/12/31 | Permalink

MCs Lee Hwi-jae, Lee Bo-young and Kim Woo-bin

SBS Drama Awards 2013 winners list...More

MBC Drama Awards 2013 Winners

2013/12/30 | Permalink

MBC Drama Awards 2013 winners list...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Season of Good Rain"

2013/12/13 | Permalink

Often while watching this movie, I was puzzled as to why it was so long. The film's aesthetic and narrative bears much similarity to a short film. Dong-ha (played by Jung Woo-sung) meets his old acquaintance Mei (played by Gao Yuanyuan) while on a business trip to Chengdu in China. There's plenty of reminiscing about old times, drumming up of nostalgia and old emotions. And it would seem like that's all there is to it. Or is it?

All of the conversations between Dong-ha and Mei are in English, as this is the only language they have in common, even though Dong-ha is Korean and Mei is Chinese...More

[Spoiler] Bae Soo-bin kisses Hwang Jung-eum and…

Source | 2013/10/09 | Permalink

Bae Soo-bin and Hwang Jung-eum kissed.

On the fifth episode of the KBS 2TV drama "Secrets", Yoo-jeong (Hwang Jung-eum) and Do-hoon (Bae Soo-bin) shared a kiss...More

TV dramas use similar names for main characters

Source | 2013/09/12 | Permalink

Jang Tae-san, Jang Tae-joo, Jang Tae-ha

They sound like names for brothers, but they are characters appearing in different TV dramas in Korea. Jang Tae-san (played by Lee Joon-gi) is the main character in MBC TVs Wednesday and Thursday drama series "Two Weeks". He is a fugitive who is mistakenly charged for murder, and struggles to save his daughter. Jang Tae-joo (played by Go Soo) is the main character in SBS TVs Monday and Tuesday drama series "Empire of Gold", and is an ambitious man who seeks a hostile takeover of a chaebol enterprise to take revenge for his father who died due to false allegations.

Jang Tae-ha (played by Park Sang-min) is a character of hard-headed conglomerate owner on MBC TVs weekend drama series Scandal. They come to have similar names because all of them are serious and strong characters, and the screenplay writers sought to pick names suitable for such characters...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] Returning to the Sunny side of Love.

2013/07/27 | Permalink

Korean films are particularly intrigued by the tragic tests time and memory can place on love. This fascination extends across genres and the results are often not the Hollywood fairy tale viewers might come to expect. We see this in recent films like "The Servant", where Choon-hyang (Korea's 'Juliet' played by Cho Yeo-jeong) suffers a devasting physical trauma that leaves her mentally and emotionally incapacitated, no longer able to remember the love and passion she once had for her forbidden lover Bang-ja (Kim Joo-hyuk). In Park Chan-wook's cult classic "Old Boy" Oh Dae-su (Choi Min-sik) is confronted with an impossible decision at the end, one that cruelly pits the love for his daughter against his own sanity. (I think it will be highly interesting to see how Spike Lee's version of the story's ending differs to Park's). There are other examples of how time and love collide in Korea cinema, often with truly memorable results, and recently I returned to one of the most successful dramas in recent years: Kang Hyeong-cheol's "Sunny - 2010"...More

CJ Entertainment Proudly Presents "A Werewolf Boy"

2013/07/23 | Permalink

Some Instincts Can Never Be Tamed ... Is It Possible He Continues to Wait for Her?

Romantic Fantasy Comes to Life on DVD Aug. 13th

Sometimes love can wait a lifetime in the romantic fantasy "A Werewolf Boy", captivating DVD Aug. 13 from CJ Entertainment America.  

An unexpected phone call summons an elderly woman, who has lost interest in life, back to Korea and the remote cottage in the countryside where she spent a tumultuous time in her youth. Memories overwhelm Suni (Park Bo-young) of a feral and mute orphan (Song Joong-ki) who the family took in ... only to discover that he was a creature never meant to exist...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] The Queen's Classroom Episode 9

2013/07/15 | Permalink

We've been waiting 9 episodes to figure out Teacher Ma Yeo-jin and while we don't get a clear cut answer, the show finally threw us a bone. Ma was a mother.

Her child died.


[Spoiler] "Jang Ok-jeong" Hong Soo-hyun dies

Source | 2013/06/24 | Permalink

In-hyeon (Hong Soo-hyun) died eventually.

The twenty-third episode of the SBS drama "Jang Ok-jeong" showed In-hyeon claiming chest pains and ending up in sickness...More

Koreans Can Expect 70.3 Years of Healthy Life

Source | 2013/06/23 | Permalink

Koreans are expected to live until the age of 79.7 years on average, but the actual healthy lifespan is about 70.3 years, according to a study. Koreans generally suffer from ill health or disability for some 9.4 years during their lifetime...More

Novice Film Director Invited to Cannes

Source | 2013/05/24 | Permalink

A short film by a promising young Korean director has been invited to this year's Cannes film festival, which opened last week and wraps up this weekend. Moon Byoung-gon's "Safe" is one of nine films entered in the Short Films Competitions after the list was whittled down from 3,500 submissions from 132 countries.

Moon said he decided to embark on his career in filmmaking after he saw veteran director Im Kwon-taek appear on a TV program when he was a freshman at university in 2001. Inspired by what Im had achieved through his lifetime, as well as the longevity of his career, Moon decided to change his major to film directing...More

Meet Legendary Korean Director Kang Woo-seok in Los Angeles

Source | 2013/04/05 | Permalink

Kang Woo-seok will be in Los Angeles for a special presentation of his highly anticipated upcoming release "Fist of Legend". This film will be the first Korean film to have a same weekend theatrical release in Korea and N. America! Director Kang is in Los Angeles for just 2 days, before rushing back just in time to see the film open in Seoul on April 10! "Fist of Legend" will open in 20 cities across N. America on April 12.


Dir. Kang will be participating in 2 special screening events both taking place at CGV Cinemas during his short Los Angeles visit...More

Pet Market Grows as More People Live Alone

Source | 2013/02/23 | Permalink

The market for pets is rapidly expanding as more people live alone or in nuclear families and the population ages.

The market is expected to grow from W1 trillion in 2010 to W1.8 trillion in 2013 and W6 trillion by 2020. It has spawned a burgeoning support industry of veterinarian clinics, pet beauty shops, pet playgrounds and pet-sitting services. Shops that sell premium pet food, medical devices and even fitness equipment are also on the rise...More

Seo Jae-kyung mourns over Jeong Myeong-heon's death

Source | 2013/01/21 | Permalink

Actor Seo Jae-kyung mourned over the death of Jeong Myeong-heon.

He posted on Twitter on the 21st, "Jeong Myeong-heon was Byeong-tae and I was Byeong-sik. We were brothers in a family. He was a genius actor. I pray you rest in peace"...More

Singer Lee So-eun Passes U.S. Bar Exam

Source | 2013/01/01 | Permalink

Singer Lee So-eun recently passed the U.S. bar exam, offering an alternative role model for Korean youngsters who regard becoming a celebrity as the be-all and end-all of existence.

For Lee, going to law school was not an escape from a flagging musical career. She has released four albums since debuting in 1998, when she was just in high school. Lee spent her childhood in the U.S. and had difficulty adjusting to school back to Korea. Then she happened to hear about an audition on education broadcaster EBS and entered it. She made it to the finals with a piece she composed by herself...More

[Spoiler] Added episodes 37 and 38 captures for the Korean drama 'May Queen'

Source | 2012/12/24 | Permalink

Added episodes 37 and 38 captures for the Korean drama "May Queen"...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "The Great Queen Seondeok"

2012/12/23 | Permalink

Origin myths can tell you a lot about a country. It's not the literal truth of the stories that's really important- rather, it's what people remember about their culture and have decided to pass along to their descendants. The heroes of our pasts are who we want future generations to emulate. In the United States, for example, the Founding Fathers are considered nigh immaculate philosopher kings who produced the Constitution through the sheer force of combined genius. This isn't even remotely true (and the Founding Fathers themselves would be quite disturbed if they knew we remembered them like this), but this simple fact in itself tells you a lot about the United States' current national character...More

[Spoiler] Cheongdam-dong Alice: Episode 5 Recap

Source | 2012/12/18 | Permalink

By: Raine


This show keeps getting better. Se-kyung's emotional palette widened, she opened up more to "Secretary Kim", there was some serious hilarity and we got to see how sweet Psycho-jo really is. I'm really falling in love with the show because I love how quirky and off-kilter Park Si-hoo's character is and I love that our female lead is severely, severely flawed. While I'm waiting for In-hwa to beef up a little more as a character, Coach Tick (Yoon-joo) is an awesomely layered baddie.

Gimme MOAR!...More

[Spoiler] Added episodes 35 and 36 captures for the Korean drama 'May Queen'

Source | 2012/12/17 | Permalink

Added episodes 35 and 36 captures for the Korean drama "May Queen"...More

[Spoiler] Added episodes 33 and 34 captures for the Korean drama 'May Queen'

Source | 2012/12/10 | Permalink

Added episodes 33 and 34 captures for the Korean drama "May Queen"...More

[Spoiler] Added episodes 31 and 32 captures for the Korean drama 'May Queen'

Source | 2012/12/03 | Permalink

Added episodes 31 and 32 captures for the Korean drama "May Queen"...More

Korean movies opening today 2012/10/18 in Korea

Source | 2012/10/18 | Permalink

Art and Culture

Source | 2012/10/17 | Permalink

It's Wednesday and that means it's celebrity news time with our Michelle Kim. But first, she has news on who will be hosting next year's Golden Globes.

Hello Michelle

[Reporter : ] Hello Hanul.

So let's start with the Golden Globes.

[Reporter : ] I'm sure the names Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are familiar to many of you. Their comedic talents in television and film are well known in the U.S. and beyond. As hosts of the next Golden Globe Awards, they're sure to give audiences plenty of laughs. Take a look...More

Im Kwon-taek: Run Far, Fly High

Source | 2012/10/09 | Permalink

19 October 2012 - 2 November 2012

Im Kwon-taek, winner of the Best Director prize at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival, as well as the Berlin Bear Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2005 Berlin Film Festival, came from a humble film background as a prop assistant to a lighting assistant. Yet since 1962 he has directed more than 100 films in his native South Korea. Critics contend that after his early films of the 60s and 70s - mainly historical dramas and war movies - Im found his true artistic voice in the 1980s and onward, through his subtly subversive manner of portraying South Korea's urgent and pressing social issues during a time when the country's film industry was highly censored...More

[Video] Trailer released for the upcoming Korean documentary "The Great Flight"

Source | 2012/10/02 | Permalink

Trailer released for the upcoming Korean documentary "The Great Flight"...More

Upcoming Korean documentary "The Great Flight"

Source | 2012/09/28 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean documentary "The Great Flight"'s page to HanCinema database...More

'Pieta' filled with bloody revenge

Source | 2012/09/06 | Permalink

Jo Min-soo, left, and Lee Jung-jin star in a scene from director Kim Ki-duk's "Pieta", which is a strong contender for the Golden Lion prize at the 69th Venice film fest.

By Kwaak Je-yup

What can wash our sins away? In Kim Ki-duk's "Pieta", it is our own blood.

Having premiered at the Venice Film Festival and opened in selected theaters in Seoul this week, the latest work by Korean cinema's enfant terrible may draw reference from Christian art's depiction of the Virgin Mary cradling the dead body of Jesus but nobody in the film abides by the religious values. They go directly against them, in fact.

A debt collector goes around the dilapidated industrial area around Cheonggye Stream, downtown Seoul, to cripple the debtors for insurance money. The impoverished victims and their family members resort to suicide and vengeance. There is no room for pity or mercy. If Mary were to star in the film, she would go hang the sons of Jerusalem's leaders and then kill herself to repent...More

Art and Culture

Source | 2012/09/03 | Permalink

It's Monday and now it's time for our Michelle Kim to tell us about all the latest arts and culture updates for this week. I hear she has two interesting exhibitions for us and a traditional music performance she just went to this past Saturday.

Hello Michelle

[Reporter : ] Hello Conn-young

So what do you have for us today[Reporter : ] Some of the fancy geometric shapes we see in carpets and tile have Islamic roots. These shapes provide insight into modern design for viewers of an exhibition at the Goyang Aram Nuri Aram Art Gallery. I have this and another exhibition featuring geometric shapes. Take a look at this...More

On two wheels: To the land of imagination

Source | 2012/08/04 | Permalink

Visitors walk through the metasequoia lane in Nami Island located in Gapyeong, Gyeonggi Province.

By Yun Suh-young

When we first think of Nami Island, what comes to mind is the metasequoia lane where the famous TV drama "Winter Sonata" was filmed...More

K-Pop Academy Opens in London to Cater for Growing Interest

Source | 2012/07/27 | Permalink

While the crowds cheered the Korean football team in St. James Park in New Castle on the other side of town in the jam-packed dance studio in Chelsea Townhall in London K-pop idol group Super Junior's hit song "Sorry Sorry" blared for the K-pop faithful...More

"MBC Star Audition" Season 3 Auditions in Los Angeles

Source | 2012/07/24 | Permalink

Auditions to be held on August 12, 2012

MBC is proud to present the 3rd season of "MBC Star Audition", Korea's celebrated singing competition show. Contestants will be picked from all over the globe to compete for a cash prize and a chance to debut as a pop singer in Korea.

The Los Angeles auditions will be held on Sunday, August 12, 2012. (Details including time and location will be released soon.) Contestants who pass the initial audition phase will be flown to Korea in September to compete against other finalists for the grand prize, and an opportunity to become an international singing sensation...More

Universal triumphs with 'Romeo and Juliet'

Source | 2012/07/15 | Permalink


Universal Ballet's principal dancers Ohm Jae-yong and Hwang Hye-min play the title roles in Kenneth Macmillan version of "Romeo and Juliet" at the Seoul Arts Center on July 12./ Courtesy of Universal Ballet

Principal Yu Zeung's Mercutio stands out from rest

By Rachel Lee

Universal Ballet has once again presented a masterpiece to local audiences.

After receiving excellent reviews for John Cranko's Onegin, Universal Ballet, led by Julia H. Moon, staged Kenneth Macmillan's 1965 version of Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet" at the Seoul Arts Center's Opera House from July 7 to 14...More

Korean movie of the week "Dancing Queen"

Source | 2012/07/12 | Permalink

Korean movie of the week "Dancing Queen" (2012)

Directed by Lee Seok-hoon

With Hwang Jung-min, Uhm Jung-hwa, Lee Han-wi, Jung Sung-hwa, Ra Mi-ran, Lee Dae-yeon,...

The wife of a Seoul mayoral candidate is a Dancing Queen
"How would you like to be a pop star?"...More

Art and Culture

Source | 2012/07/09 | Permalink

It's a fresh start to a new week and to give us a picture of this week's latest arts and culture events, we have our Michelle Kim with us right now. I hear she has a very unique opera performance in London and a sneak peek of two plays about love in Seoul.

Hello Michelle

[Reporter : ] Hello Conn-young

So what is this unique opera that you want to tell us about...More

(41) Im Kwon-taek brought Korean tradition to screen

Source | 2012/07/01 | Permalink

Director Im Kwon-taek received an honorary Berlin Bear award for his lifetime achievement at the 55th Berlinale International Film Festival in Berlin in 2005. / Korea Times

By Andrew Salmon

A master of pansori ― a form of vocal Korean opera ― leads his adopted son and daughter through the backwaters of rural Korea. The troupe scratch an increasingly precarious living as itinerant musicians while their master, refusing to compromise with modernity, strictly trains them in the traditional art which is his only skill and his motive passion.

But with the country swept up in massive social upheavals between the 1940s, 50s and 60s, their art form is losing its cachet, relevance and audiences. The son decides to abandon his life as a wandering troubadour and embrace modern music. The father ― believing that suffering is essential to create great art, unwilling to change with the times and desperate to keep his hold on to his adopted daughter, an extraordinary vocal talent ― is driven to commit an act of unforgettable cruelty...More

Star on the rise

Source | 2012/06/24 | Permalink

Soprano Kathleen Kim speaks at a roundtable interview on June 5. / Courtesy of the Metropolitan Opera

Petite soprano Kathleen Kim lures opera fans with big voice

By Kwaak Je-yup

You cannot help but be struck by her pint-sized figure when you first see the Korean-born American soprano Kathleen Kim. But her stage presence is everything but small...More

Power of Asian Filmmakers, Fantastic Film School 2012

Source | 2012/06/17 | Permalink

Fantastic Film School (FFS) is an intensive training program for genre film professionals at Network of Asian Fantastic Films(NAFF) organized by Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan). For its fifth edition entitled with Asian Filmmakers Lab, FFS focuses on the core process of filmmaking reflecting the rapid changes in current filmmaking trends.

This year, with generous supports from Media Development Authority (MDA) of Singapore, Taipei National University of Arts, Create HK and Korean Academy of Film Arts (KAFA), FFS has selected 24 participants from Asia, including South Korea, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and UK. With competitive submissions from emerging and established filmmakers alike, the selection process was the most contested in the programs history...More

(15) Kang Chol-hwan: harbinger of N. Korean defectors

Source | 2012/06/10 | Permalink

Kang Chol-hwan, who defected from North Korea in 1992, now lives in South Korea and works as a journalist and human rights activist. / Korea Times

By Andrei Lankov

The North Korean resistance movement does not have many recognizable faces. This is understandable: a really brutal dictatorship would not allow any dissenter to stay alive. The fact that dissent was possible in Brezhnev's Russia and, for that matter in Park Chung-hee's South Korea, is yet another reminder that these two dictators were softies if compared to really serious practitioners of the craft ― like the hereditary dictators of the Kim family in the North ...More

Joseon folk arts champions

Source | 2012/06/09 | Permalink

By Kim Ji-myung

While Koreans had the talented hands to create remarkable artifacts, it was the Japanese who had the eyes to appreciate their value.

It is a provocative equation, but this dynamic comes to mind when we think of the handful of Japanese art connoisseurs who helped awaken Koreans to the beauty and value of Joseon Kingdom (1392-1910) porcelain and crafts during the occupation (1910-1945)...More

The New York Asian Film Festival (June 29 - July 15) returns - and this year we're bringing crazy back!

Source | 2012/05/09 | Permalink


The opening night film is Pang Ho-cheung's astonishingly filthy, extremely hilarious VULGARIA, a movie about making movies, shot in just 12 days, all about gangsters named Brother Tyrannosaur, sleazy lawyers, The Sex Film industry, and men who love donkeys a little too much. The Hollywood Reporter calls it a "...laugh-out-loud, aptly titled comedy". Pang himself, Hong Kong's hottest young director, will be a guest of the festival and we'll be presenting his new romantic comedy, LOVE IN THE BUFF, about a couple who meet in the smoke break alley outside their office building and try to make their romance work despite cell phones dropped in toilets, friends who have the death touch, and corporate moves to Beijing...More

[HanCinema's Interview Corner] Ten Questions for the: PARTY ANIMAL

2012/05/05 | Permalink

Seoul is a buzzing and happening city that boasts an exciting and vibrant nightlife. Where are some of your favourite hangouts and what is it about those places that keeps you coming back for more?

Well I'm fan of so many places. There's of course Rhythm and Booze, my main hangout in Bucheon. The owner is a good friend, the people are all friendly, and the overall atmosphere and life of the place makes you feel like you're at home.

Besides that, really, there are so many good clubs in this country. A lot of people will right away say Volume, but honestly, I never took to it. There are many other clubs like Mansion, Ellui, Answer, and more, which I have gone to amazing parties and live performances...More

South African film festival comes in Seoul

Source | 2012/04/23 | Permalink

The South African Embassy will hold a film festival April 25-26 as part of celebrations to mark the 20th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties.

South African film Retribution screens at 6:00 p.m. April 25 and Skin at 11:00 a.m. April 26 for free to the general public at the Korean Film Archive's Movie Theater 2. Just come and enjoy South African cinema...More

Salty foods fatten you up

Source | 2012/04/14 | Permalink

By Yun Suh-young

The more salt you intake, the bigger you get.

A recent study by the Ministry of Health and Welfare and Dongguk University Medical Center showed that higher sodium consumption increased the risk of obesity in both adults and teenagers and the correlation between the two was much higher for adolescents.

The data for the study on the relationship between salty food and obesity had been collected since 2008 through national health and nutrition surveys...More

Check your English instructor's credentials

Source | 2012/04/07 | Permalink

1 in 10 foreign English instructors verified

By Lee Hyo-sik

Education authorities have failed to properly check the identity and qualifications of foreign English teachers hired by private learning institutes.

The Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education said Friday that it has been able to verify criminal records, medical history and other personal details of only 9.3 percent of non-Koreans working at cram schools, or hagwon in Korean, as English instructors in the capital city...More

Many Koreans suffer 'English stress' and a few snap

Source | 2012/04/07 | Permalink

By Kim Tae-jong

The Korea-born gunman who killed seven people at a Christian college in California alleged he had been regularly teased by his peers over his poor English skill, and that might have made him snap.

It's debatable whether this can explain his heinous action.

Back home, many of the Korean campus shooter's compatriots suffer from a great deal of stress from advancing their English proficiency, although at different levels without going down the same extreme path as he did...More

[Interview] Han Ga-in, "It's not that I didn't, I couldn't"

Source | 2012/03/27 | Permalink

The 'it' girl is Han Ga-in (30, Kim Hyun-joo) these days. It took her 10 years to become 'the lovable actress' from 'the pretty commercial star'.

She took in all the criticism she will hear in a lifetime, all at once on "The Sun and the Moon". People ask "Is that X her?" in the movie "Architecture 101".

Out of the box and into the public's arms, Han Ga-in talked about the past 6 months she lived as an actress. "I knew it was going to be hard but I got the courage and it was beyond harder than imagined but I survived with tenacity".

Seeing the box office top 1 result, she pats herself on the head and says, "It was right of me to get my courage together"...More

[HanCinema Korea's Diary] Classical Korean Cinema at KOFA: Im Kwon-taek's "Gilsotteum"

Source | 2012/03/17 | Permalink

Every month at Korean Film Archive in Seoul Darcy Paquet, a respected Korean film critic and journalist, will be presenting a number of classic Korean films. The first of these was held last weekend and Im Kwon-taek's hidden masterpiece "Gilsotteum" (1985) was screened. After which, Darcy shared some facts on the piece as well as his thoughts on the film, the director and the actors involved. Hancinema was there for the screening and recorded the Q & A session (English and Korean)...More

Between life and death carved in your palms

Source | 2012/03/17 | Permalink

By Janet Shin

I have lived a life travelling many countries for various reasons. And they were mostly underdeveloped and sometimes dangerous.

For someone like me, who was intrigued by fate, physical hazards, such as war, terrorism and epidemic disease were not major factors to fear. I had to fight more against the mental frailty and complicated relationships among different interest groups...More

(28) Ahn Jung-geun: patriot, assassin, hero

Source | 2012/03/10 | Permalink

This calligraphy with the stamp of a hand was known to be done by Ahn Jung-geun himself sometime in February 1910 in his prison cell. He was executed one month later. / Korea Times file

By Andrew Salmon

In an exchange between two characters in a Jack Higgins World War II novel, a Frenchman tells an Englishman, "You are fortunate that your country has not been occupied. It is not an experience I recommend"...More

More Babies, Fewer Divorces Bode Well for Korean Families

Source | 2012/03/03 | Permalink

More babies were born in Korea for the second year running and divorce hit a 14-year low, raising hopes that the country may be able to reverse the dwindling birthrate and halt family disintegration.

Statistics Korea on Monday said 471,400 babies were born last year, up 0.3 percent from a year earlier and an average of 1,292 a day. This was the most since 2007, the Year of the Golden Pig thought to augur wealth, when 493,200 babies were born, and the second increase in as many years...More

SM Entertainment Holds Auditions in Chicago: Chicago Really Knows How to "Dream High!"

Source | 2012/02/29 | Permalink

The Korean Cultural Center of Chicago in Wheeling, IL

Talents came from near and far for their shot at idol stardom. On Feb. 20, 2012, young people of all ethnicities gathered at the Korean Cultural Center of Chicago in Wheeling, IL to audition for SM Entertainment. The South Korean entertainment agency was in the city to discover the next singer, dancer, actress, model and composer who could become the next star of Asia...More

Marital harmony: tragedy of a couple

Source | 2012/02/25 | Permalink

By Janet Shin

Choosing a suitable spouse is one of the most important decisions to lead a happy life. We all try to meet someone who will be a faithful companion throughout our life journey. Couples reach marriage, sometimes through true love, or sometimes under the other conditions. Whatever the reasons are, they ultimately wish to live a happy married life. This, seemingly easy wish is actually the most difficult thing in our life. Why is that?

We humans are not perfect. Everybody has their own drawbacks and sometimes hidden trauma. When it is explained by a saju perspective, it is because we have only four pillars, not five pillars of destiny. The cosmos and every being in the cosmos are explained by yin, yang and the five elements...More

Shinhwa sells out reunion concerts

Source | 2012/02/14 | Permalink

Boyband Shinhwa performs during the 10th-year anniversary concert at the Olympic Gymnastics Arena in Bangi-dong, southeastern Seoul, in this March 29, 2008 file photo. / Courtesy of Shinhwa Company/Topclass Entertainment

Boy band remains hot ticket 14 years after debut

By Kwaak Je-yup

As the years go by, even the hottest teen idols often disappear into oblivion and make room for the younger generation to bask in the limelight. But one group in Korea has managed to stay relevant and even wildly popular ― 14 years after their debut.

Shinhwa, the longest-running boy band in the country, sold out its two-night concert series "THE RETURN" 40 minutes after tickets went on sale at 8 p.m. Monday, the group's management announced the morning after...More

Kim Junsu: 'The Role That Has No Correct Answer Attracts Me'

Source | 2012/01/31 | Permalink

Kim Junsu will play the role of Tod in the Musical "Elizabeth".

The musical "Elizabeth" is based on a true life story of Austria's Empress Elizabeth, and the other protagonist besides Elizabeth is Tod, which is the personified character of death. "Tod", who met Elizabeth when she was young, fell in love with her and came to stay right beside her during her lifetime while tempting her. Elizabeth, who came to be destined to live in the cage of the palace even though she had been pursuing her free life and love, became weakened by Tod's temptations...More

[Spoiler] "Padam Padam" Han Ji-min has suspicions, Jung Woo-sung pleads

Source | 2012/01/03 | Permalink

Jeong Jina was scared of Yang Kang-chil. He was an ex-convict who murdered her uncle and got the blind support of his mother.

Jeong Jina (Han Ji-min) announced their break up on the latest episode of JTBC drama "Padam Padam... The Sound of His and Her Heartbeats" on January 3rd...More

2011 MBC Drama Awards : Winners List

Source | 2011/12/31 | Permalink

2011 MBC Drama Awards : Winners List...More

Samulnori Lights up Hollywood at Christmas Time

Source | 2011/12/23 | Permalink

On November 12th, the auditorium of a middle school in Los Angles rang with the sound of traditional Korean samulnori.

The students remain tense and focused throughout the performance, and the audience watches with held breath. That's because this performance is just a dress rehearsal for another, bigger performance...More

Korean movies opening today 2011/12/15 in Korea

Source | 2011/12/15 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2011/12/15 in Korea "Too Many Villains", documentary "My Barefoot Friend" and "Love and Affair" "Too Many Villains" (2010)

Directed by Kim Harry

With Kim Jun-bae, Song Seo-yeon, Kwon Oh-jin, Kong Yoo-seok,...

Kang-pil is a former gangster who now runs a private detective agency and needs money to hire a lawyer for the rights to have custody of his daughter. A woman called Lee Moon-hee brings a huge amount in check and asks him to follow a man named Park Yong-dae. However, at the same time, Park Yong-dae goes missing and the woman is unreachable and Kang-pil d...More

Lee Sun-mi wins Woman in Film of the Year

Source | 2011/12/14 | Permalink

Women in Film Korea has announced producer Lee Sun-mi is the 2011 winner of the Woman in Film of the Year Award for her work on "Detective K". Other awards went to actresses Song Hye-kyo and Choi Ji-hee-I, director Han Hye-jin-I, and producer Um Joo-yeong...More

Updated cast for the Korean movie "Pained"

Source | 2011/12/10 | Permalink

Updated cast for the Korean movie "Pained"...More

Updated cast for the Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/12/10 | Permalink

Updated cast for the Korean movie "Champ"...More

Added new images for the upcoming Korean documentary "My Barefoot Friend"

Source | 2011/12/09 | Permalink

Added new images for the upcoming Korean documentary "My Barefoot Friend"...More

Moon Chae-won: 'I Will Show My New Appearance in New Year'

Source | 2011/12/09 | Permalink

This year's rising star Moon Chae-won (25) appeared on a talk show program on News Y, which is the news channel produced by Yonhap News, to express her feelings about this year's huge achievement and new year's plan, and she said, "I appeared in two historical dramas this year, but I will try more to present my modern appearances next year".

Moon Chae-won garnered two rookie actress awards at the Grand Bell Awards and Blue Dragon Awards with her appearance in the movie "Arrow, The Ultimate Weapon", and she gained great popularity with her appearance in KBS's melodrama about tragic love entitled "The Princess' Man". Those two works were both historical dramas, and Moon has obtained many male viewers' love by being selected as the most beautiful woman in a Hanbok...More

Added new stills and video for the upcoming Korean documentary "My Barefoot Friend"

Source | 2011/11/29 | Permalink

Added new stills and video for the upcoming Korean documentary "My Barefoot Friend"...More

Upcoming Korean documentary "My Barefoot Friend"

Source | 2011/11/22 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean documentary "My Barefoot Friend"'s page to HanCinema database...More

The Front Line wins big at Korean Critics Awards

Source | 2011/11/14 | Permalink

Director JANG Hun's "The Front Line" was the big winner at the 31st Korean Association of Film Critics (KAFC) Awards. The ceremony was held at the Seoul Press Center on the evening of Friday, Nov. 11.

 South Korea's submission to the Academy Awards best foreign language film nominations, The Front Line snapped up a total of four KAFC awards - Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best New Actor...More

Ko Un Most Likely Candidate for Nobel Literature Prize

Source | 2011/11/09 | Permalink

South Korean poet Ko Un recites his poem in Seoul. "That is excitement, Tears flowing out of the gun barrel, That is roots of the underground that do not worry about leaves of the aboveground. That is the sound of someone's young flute", recited South Korea's most renowned poet Ko Un (高銀) with forceful intensity at a literary gathering in Seoul on Nov. 8, 2011...More

A fluent dialogue between East and West

Source | 2011/11/04 | Permalink

Part of American painter Andrew Wyeth's "Marriage" (1993), which is carried in the book "Picturesque Life - An Artistic Encounter of East and West".

By Noh Hyun-gi

The difference between Eastern and Western art is apparent; the disparity in material, composition, colors, and subject matter is often considered to reflect an innate clash between the two sets of cultures...More

[Portrait] Filmmaker Im Kwon-taek: master of mirrors

Source | 2011/10/20 | Permalink

Filmmaker Im Kwon-taek drinks a cup of morning coffee during an interview with The Korea Times at a cafe near his home in Suji, Gyeonggi Province on Sept. 28. / Photography by Jesse Chun for The Korea Times...More

Passion for life pierces Yu's poems

Source | 2011/10/14 | Permalink

Poet Yu Chi-whan (1908-1967)

Yu Chi-hwan's poems translated into English

By Chung Ah-young

Renowned for his representative poem "Flag", Yu Chi-whan (1908-1967) was one of the most prolific poets in the 20th century in Korea. Born in Tongyeong, South Gyeongsang Province, he was not only a leading poet but also a school teacher and a brother of Yu Chi-jin, a prominent playwright.

Yu wrote more than 160 poems and published 10 anthologies of his poetry during his lifetime...More

[HanCinema's Film Review] "Bedevilled"

Source | 2011/09/17 | Permalink

Subtlety is a foreign concept to "Bedevilled", dealing more with superlative than finesse. Not to say that's entirely a shame - in fact, it's more strategic than anything else. The audience is manipulated upon entering the cinema, expecting a revenge thriller or typical horror and instead being emotionally thrashed by confronting horror and cruelty that doesn't at all follow the entertaining hack and slash disposable violence and cathartic resolution of the horror genre.

Our main character, Hae Won, is a morally obtuse city slicker whose pathos indirectly hurts those around her, whether it be refusing to help a woman being beaten or putting clerical procedure over a person's livelihood. That same lethargy deals its damage to her childhood friend, Kim Bok-Nam, when she visits the island of her upbringing...More

Added new stills and videos for the Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/09/16 | Permalink

Added new stills and videos for the Korean movie "Champ"...More

Experience kimchi and taekwondo in Gangnam

Source | 2011/09/08 | Permalink

A taekwondo demonstration takes place at Kukkiwon, southern Seoul. The regular performance is on Saturdays at the World Taekwondo Headquarters. / Courtesy of Kukkiwon

By Kim Rahn

Several decades ago even when foreigners barely knew anything about Korean culture, they had still heard of two things: kimchi and taekwondo...More

Korean movies opening today 2011/09/07 in Korea

Source | 2011/09/07 | Permalink

Korean movies opening today 2011/09/07 in Korea "Pained", "Champ" and "Marrying the Mafia IV - Family Ordeal"...More

Added stills, music video and updated cast for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/09/05 | Permalink

Added stills, music video and updated cast for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

Added new stills, video and updated cast for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/09/01 | Permalink

Added new stills, video and updated cast for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

Added plenty of new stills and on-the-set videos for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/08/22 | Permalink

Added plenty of new stills and on-the-set videos for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

Added new stills and making of for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/08/19 | Permalink

Added new stills and making of for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

"Quick" is Speeding Its Way to the United States and Canada! +Win FREE Tickets!

Source | 2011/08/12 | Permalink

"Quick" redefines the Korean blockbuster and blasts away the summer heat!
The speed maniac and motorcycle messenger Gi-su receives a mysterious call when he is about to take Arom, his ex-girlfriend and a member of a girl band, to a live broadcast. Suddenly, a mysterious voice on the phone warns that there is a bomb wire to Arom's helmet and that a package must be delivered to a designated address within 30 minutes. "Remove the helmet or fail to complete the mission and the bomb goes off".

...As the clock is ticking, the two begin a race against time to stay alive...More

Added new poster and stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/08/08 | Permalink

Added new poster and stills for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

"Lie to Me" : Tomato juice, Cola, and Ice Cream - 3 little things that remind us of Gong Ah-jeong and Hyeon Gi-joon

2011/08/02 | Permalink

What is the similarity between tomato juice, cola, and ice cream? Hmm…..they are the right things to refresh you during a blazing sunny day? Definitely. What else?

Specifically, they are the right stuffs that will definitely freshen up your memory of the journey of love between Gong Ah-jeong (Yoon Eun-hye) and his ultimate husband, Hyeon Gi-joon (Kang Ji-hwan). Do you still remember her lie that has led her to get the once-in-a-lifetime marriage with the most wanted bachelor in South Korea? It is probably the best method to get a husband in these crazy days...More

Trailer revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/07/29 | Permalink

Trailer revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

New poster revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/07/20 | Permalink

New poster revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

weekly star scene

Source | 2011/07/14 | Permalink

Show transcript

Up next is , our round up of the top 5 stories from showbiz in the past week.

: We have our lively, energetic Dami here in the studio with us. Hello, Dami!

[Reporter : ] : Hi Sean and Hi 건영. It's nice to have you back!

: I'm glad to be back! What sort of news do you have for us today...More

'Godfather' Star Al Pacino Coming to Seoul Next Month

Source | 2011/07/13 | Permalink

Al Pacino will set foot in Korea for the first time on Aug. 25. The actor, famous for his role in the Godfather trilogy, will attend a ceremony marking the construction of a new studio belonging to Gwangju Advanced Media Corporation. GAMCO is a joint-venture that was established by Gwangju city and K2EON, a U.S. 3D content conversion company, in January.

The ceremony, which will be held at Seoul's Lotte Hotel on Aug. 26, will serve as a venue for an episode of the actor's 90-minute talk show, "Pacino: One...More

Poster revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/07/11 | Permalink

Poster revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

Teaser and first stills revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/07/08 | Permalink

Teaser and first stills revealed for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

Park Yong-ha's Fans Visit Film Concerts in Japan

Source | 2011/06/30 | Permalink

Around 25,000 fans have participated in the late Hallyu star Park Yong-ha's film concerts, which have been held a total of 27 times in nine different cities in Japan.

Hallyu star Park Yong-ha, who passed away last year in June, has had film concerts held on his behalf in Japan, and many of his Japanese fans have been visiting the film concerts. The concert entitled "Park Yong-ha FILMS 2004~2010 ☆We LOVE Yong Ha☆" was held twice at Tokyo International Forum Hall in Yurakucho, Tokyo on June 22, and his family members including his mother Oh Young Ran and many fans watched the video that contains his performances filmed during his lifetime...More

Remembering Park Yong-ha

Source | 2011/06/27 | Permalink

To commemorate the first anniversary of the late actor Park Yong-ha's death, various memorial events are being held in Japan. / Korea Times file

Memorial wave for late hallyu star continues

By Chung Ah-young

Although the late hallyu star Park Yong-ha died a year ago, his popularity is not waning in Japan...More

47th Baeksang Awards - Winners' List

Source | 2011/05/27 | Permalink

47th Baeksang Awards - Winners' ListX

In films

Daesang: Lee Byung-hun (I Saw the Devil)
Best Picture: "The Man From Nowhere"
Director: Lee Chang-dong ("Poetry")...More

Late Actress Jang Jin-yeong's Memorial Hall Opens on May 14

Source | 2011/05/16 | Permalink

"A chrysanthemum under a high autumn sky sleeps the eternal sleep. Even though we cannot see her graceful appearance again in person, she will stay forever as a delicate scent in every person's mind who loves her".

Actress Jang Jin-yeong died with stomach cancer in September, 2009, and the three-thousand square meter memorial hall for commemorating her sprit was built and opened in Imsil-gun in Jeollabukdo province on May 14. The memorial hall has been built by his father Jang Gil Nam (78), who wanted to let her rest in peace in a remote mountain village with clean air...More

Jung Gyu-woon is 150 kg

Source | 2011/04/26 | Permalink

Well known for looking good in suits Jung Gyu-woon transformed into a 150kg man.

In the new KBS2 drama "Romance Town" he is Kang Gun-woo and made the transformation of a lifetime. With a massive body weighing 150kg and short round hair also known as 'Hosub hair', he is just as shocking as Kim Ah-joong from movie "200 Pounds Beauty"....More

Ordinary no more: 'Snooki' leads reality TV's new focus on non-celebrities

Source | 2011/04/26 | Permalink

Amy, left, and Bonnie, are ordinary young women who became famous through a Korean reality program. / Korea Times file

By Kwon Mee-yoo

The demand for reality shows in Korea is catching up with that of Western audiences, and the focus has moved from celebrities to ordinary people...More

Andre Kim posthumously awards doctors

Source | 2011/04/18 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won

He may have parted from this world, but his knack for style and charity seem to remain in vogue.

Two resident doctors of the Seoul National University Hospital received the Andre Kim Award, a legacy of the late fashion designer, the hospital said Tuesday.

While receiving treatment at the medical center in April 2008, Kim donated 1 billion won, asking that it be used to foster talented young doctors.

He gave an additional 500 million won before passing away in 2010, as well as 50 million won posthumously last December.

The inaugural Andre Kim Award recognized ...More

Shin's English debut touching US readers

Source | 2011/04/08 | Permalink

Author Shin Kyung-sook signs an autograph for a fan at a reception to celebrate the book's English debut in the United States in New York's Korean consulate, Wednesday. / Yonhap

By Chung Ah-young

Prominent Korean novelist Shin Kyung-sook's bestseller "Please Look After Mom" is capturing the hearts of U.S. readers in her English debut published by Knopf in the United States on April 5 with its timeless and universal values of a family and the devotion of a mother...More

Korea Honored at Asian Film Awards in Hong Kong

Source | 2011/03/25 | Permalink

By Lukas Schwarzacher

Korea was in the limelight at the Asian Film Awards (AFA) in Hong Kong on March 22. Best Director and Best Screenplay kudos went to director Lee Chang-dong for "Poetry". Ha Jung-woo won Best Actor for "The Yellow Sea", and Youn Yuh-jung was awarded the Best Supporting Actress prize for "The Housemaid - 2010".

The Best Editor was Nam Na-yeong for "I Saw the Devil" (in American release since two weeks ago)...More

Korean cineastes sweep Asian Film Awards

Source | 2011/03/22 | Permalink

From left, actor Ha Jung-woo, the winner of Best Actor award, Youn Yuh-jung, the winner of Best Supporting Actress award, and director Lee Chang-dong, the winner of Best Director award, pose with their trophies at the Asian Film Awards in Hong Kong, Monday. / AP-Yonhap
By Lee Hyo-won

HONG KONG ― South Korean cineastes shone at the Asian Film Awards Monday, winning Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress and Best Editing.

The fifth edition of the awards, held in conjunction with the Hong Kong International Film Festival, featured a tough competition among some of the most renowned Asian cineastes and the red carpet event beamed brighter than ever with the attendance of top stars. Yet it was marked by many absences in the aftermath of the disastrous earthquakes in Japan, and ovations were respectful rather than enthusiastic...More

Director Jang Jin, "Kim Soo-ro was different than usual"

Source | 2011/03/15 | Permalink

Director Jang Jin spoke about the rediscovery of actor Kim Soo-ro.

Kim Soo-ro acts as lawyer and husband Min-gyu who loses his laughter after losing wife in director Jang Jin's tenth movie, "Romantic Heaven". He transforms his image from being comic to being a husband full of sorrow....More

Updated cast for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"

Source | 2011/03/13 | Permalink

Updated cast for the upcoming Korean movie "Champ"...More

The old Korean song

Source | 2011/02/16 | Permalink

By Lyman McLallen

Korea is one of the oldest countries in the world yet at the same time one of the newest. Its capital, Seoul, is a vast modern city, one of the largest on Earth, with more skyscrapers than you can count. Its transportation system is a marvel, for Seoul has one of the finest subway rail systems on the planet with trains that will take you to every neighborhood in the city and out to many parts of the metropolitan area and beyond.

The trains and buses run frequently and arrive and depart like clockwork, plus there are always taxis everywhere, making it so easy to get around Seoul that you don't need a car.

From early in the morning through the afternoon and late into the evening, millions of people go to work and return home riding the subway.

A couple of weeks ago I was standing in a crowded subway car in the late afternoon holding onto the strap to keep from falling when I noticed the elderly couple sitting in that section of the car reserved for older people and pregnant women. They had their two, young granddaughters with them who couldn't have been more than four or five years old.

I couldn't help but listen as the old man started singing to his granddaughters in a soft but grizzled voice, and though I couldn't tell for sure because I had never heard that song before, I knew it was a children's song and I also knew that he had learned it when he was a child ...More

'Blossom' portrays love in twilight years

Source | 2011/02/07 | Permalink

A scene from the film "Late Blossom"

By Kwon Mee-yoo

Elderly people are often excluded from big and small screens dominated mainly by the portrayal of romance between young couples. However, the new movie "Late Blossom" features the love of four people in their twilight years, based on a hit Internet cartoon by Kang Full...More

Actor joins the Marines

Source | 2011/01/14 | Permalink

"Rich people are different from the rest of us", wrote F. Scott Fitzgerald in "The Great Gatsby", a novel about the Roaring 1920s of the U.S. At the time, the upper class dominated the political, economic and social circles with fortunes inherited from their parents. So what about the super rich in the 21st century? They are the "working rich" who earned their fortunes by maximizing their outstanding abilities with technology and globalization. They practice "noblesse oblige", or the moral obligation of those with high social status, through active charity work and follow a lifestyle different from that of ordinary people.

In the popular SBS soap opera ...More

'Glove' pitches for love of the game

Source | 2011/01/13 | Permalink

A scene from Kang Woo-seok's sports drama "GLove", which is based on a true story about hearing impaired boys challenging themselves through baseball

By Lee Hyo-won

You can hear it loud and clear - hope is at bat here...More

Veteran Stuntwoman Has Grown Up with the Job

Source | 2011/01/06 | Permalink

Cho Joo-hyun is a veteran stunt woman with a career spanning over 17 years. The 40-year old, who stands 165 cm tall and weighs 51 kg, has appeared in hundreds of films, TV series and commercials. There are only 10 women among some 200 stunt doubles in Korea, and Cho is the only woman who has been working in the field for more than a decade.

"I've come this far because I tried hard not to be picked on for being a woman", she says.

Her job is a calling. A gymnast in middle and high school, she gave up although she enjoyed it because she felt she was not good enough. She then became an aerobics instructor, but it was a coincidental recommendation by her brother-in-law, who was working in film industry, that introduced her to the world of stunt acting, and it became her career...More

Go Hyun-jung wins grand prize at SBS Drama Awards

Source | 2011/01/02 | Permalink

Actress Go Hyun-jung [SBS]

Korean actress Go Hyun-jung received the grand prize at major broadcaster SBS' year-end drama awards ceremony held on the last day of 2010.

At the SBS Drama Awards held at the SBS Open Hall on Friday, Ko was awarded the top acting honor for her role in "Daemul - Big Thing" in which she played Seo Hae-rim, about one woman's rise to become the first female president in the country...More

Yoo Jae-suk wins grand prize once again at MBC Entertainment Awards

Source | 2010/12/30 | Permalink

Korean variety show host Yoo Jae-suk [Asia Economic Daily]

Korean entertainment show host Yoo Jae-suk won the grand prize for the second consecutive year at the MBC Entertainment Awards held last night.

At the awards ceremony held at MBC's Dream Center located in Ilsan, Gyeong-gi Province, Yoo was awarded the top honor for his role as emcee for MBC's variety shows "Infinite Challenge" and "Come Over", making it his seventh award during a year-end program...More

[Century of Turbulence] (49) Motion picture first came to Korea at turn of 20th century

Source | 2010/12/12 | Permalink

These two photos show Burton Holmes shooting scenes on streets in Seoul in the early 1900s. The American traveler and filmmaker (1870-1958) is known to have introduced a motion picture to the royal family during his vist to Korea. His lifetime achievements earned him a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. / Robert Neff Collection

By Robert Neff

On a cool evening in October 1897, a crowd of excited Koreans gathered in front of a small dilapidated barn in the Jingogae (modern Chungmuro) area of Seoul. They all wanted to be the first to witness the latest modern technology to be introduced into Korea – the motion picture...More

Hwang Jung-eum's Acting Blossoms

Source | 2010/12/11 | Permalink

Hwang Jung-eum has seen a stunning reversal of fortunes this year. Once criticized for her unnatural and affected acting since her debut, she has blossomed into a versatile performer with the sitcom "High Kick Through The Roof", which ended early this year, and serious hour-long TV drama "Giant", which ended Tuesday.

In "Giant", she plays a woman who sacrifices everything for love. "I think as an actress I just got over the stage of embarrassment", the 25-year old admits...More

Girls' Generation, 2AM win 2010 Golden Disk Awards

Source | 2010/12/10 | Permalink

Girl group Girls' Generation (top) and male ballad group 2AM at Golden Disk Awards Ceremony on Thursday, December 9 [Asia Economy Daily]

Idol groups Girls' Generation and 2AM won the top prizes at the 2010 Golden Disk Awards held Thursday.

At the 25th Golden Disk Awards held at Korea University in Seoul on December 9, nine-member girl band Girls' Generation and four-member boy band 2AM won the grand prize for album and grand prize for digital sound source, respectively...More

Lee Seung-gi fell down from his chair while '2010 Golden Disk' was in progress... 'Ouch Seung-gi!'

Source | 2010/12/09 | Permalink

Lee Seung-gi got new nickname, 'Ouch Seung-gi' as he fell down while he was sitting during the Awards show.

During the 25th '2010 Golden Disk' which was held in Seoul Korea University on 9th, Lee Seung-gi experienced a lifetime experience while he was interviewed by Tak Jae-joon....More

Jo Dong-hyuk's muscular body lines are revealed

Source | 2010/11/21 | Permalink

Actor Jo Dong-hyuk revealed his masculine photoshoot.

In the photos of Jo Dong-hyuk, which were released on the21st, he is catching everybody's eyes with his six packs and sexy pose that is revealing little but of his pubic hair....More

"The Man From Nowhere" sweeps Korea Film Awards

Source | 2010/11/19 | Permalink

Korean action movie "The Man From Nowhere" [CJ Entertainment]

"The Man From Nowhere" triumphed at the 2010 Korea Film Awards on Thursday, raking up the most trophies at the annual ceremony including its main star Won Bin who won the prize for best actor.

The action flick directed by Lee Jeong-beom took the awards for best actor, best new actress, best cinematography, best music, best lighting, best visual effects and best editor...More

Won Bin won Best Actor Award in Korea Film Awards... 'The Man From Nowhere' won 7 awards

Source | 2010/11/18 | Permalink

Won Bin won Best actor Award at the 8th Korea Film Awards.

He won Best Actor Award in 8th Korea Film Awards, which was held at Seoul Cultural Hall on 18th, by his latest movie, "The Man From Nowhere"....More

[REVIEW] SBS TV series "Life is Beautiful" - Finale Episodes

Source | 2010/11/08 | Permalink

A scene from "Life is Beautiful" [SBS]

Last episodes to SBS TV series "Life is Beautiful"

In the end, everybody was happy. Tae-sup (Song Chang-eui) and Kyung-soo (Lee Sang-woo) became strong-willed enough to believe they will not waver may they face outing from society and married couple Byung-tae (Kim Young-chul) and Min-jae (Kim Hae-sook) who always served as the unfaltering roots to their family became excited with the thought of going on a trip for the first time in many years. Also, as he had wished, the grandfather (Choi Jung-hoon) spent the last moment of his life next to his dear wife...More

Trailer released for the Korean movie "Our Happy Ending"

Source | 2010/11/04 | Permalink

Trailer has been released for the Korean movie "Our Happy Ending"...More

Korean movies released today in Korea

Source | 2010/11/04 | Permalink

Korean movies released today in Korea "Rolling Home with a Bull", "No Doubt", "Love on the Debt", "The Boy from Ipanema" and "Our Happy Ending"...More

Pans & Tilts - Mumbai Film Festival: Fulfilling and Frustrating

Source | 2010/11/02 | Permalink

By Gautaman Bhaskaran
South Asia Editor
The recent Mumbai Film Festival cannot be faulted at least on one very important score. Its selections are outstanding. Undoubtedly. At least they have been so since the Festival last year, when Reliance Big Entertainment took over and Srinivasan Narayanan stepped in as Director. The eight-day Festival, whose 12th edition ended last week in India's citadel of cinema, offered about 200 movies from 60 countries.

Starting its roll with David Fincher's acclaimed "The Social Network" that fictionalises the founding of Facebook, the Festival had an International Competition for first features. Obviously, festival competitions in India do not attract the best of baskets. One, there really is no market worth the name, and most big directors/producers or those with a touch of brilliance would rather go to the top European festivals, like Cannes, Venice or Berlin. If they fail to get in there, there is always Pusan that has grown unbelievably impressive in the past few years.

Yet, Mumbai Festival's Competition did throw up a few interesting films. Sophie Deraspe's "Vital Signs" from Canada tells an engaging story in 88 minutes of a handicapped girl's fulfilling involvement in the lives of those about to die. Turkey's "Majority" by Seren Yuce, which clinched the Festival's top prize, talks about a bullying father's relationship with his meek son (does it remind you of Vikramaditya Motwane's "Udaan" that screened at Cannes in May?). India's entry in Competition was Aamir Bashir's "Autumn". It describes with a touch of poignancy how a came...More

Singer-actress Uhm recovers from cancer

Source | 2010/10/20 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won

It became belatedly known that singer-actress Uhm Jung-hwa received treatment for thyroid cancer in May.

"Uhm Jung-hwa was diagnosed with the early stages thyroid of cancer and underwent surgery in May. The surgery was successful and she has since fully recovered",the 41-year-old's agency Sim Entertainment said Wednesday.

The news caught many by surprise since Uhm had been appearing regularly in the public spotlight, including as a judge for the "American Idol"-style talent recruitment TV program "Superstar K2".

"Very few people knew about her condition, including her family and the head of her management agency. Other staff members of Sim were also surprised to hear the overdue news. They say thyroid diseases usually last a lifetime but thyroid cancer is actually more easily treatable. Uhm has be...More

Upcoming Korean movie "Our Happy Ending"

2010/10/13 | Permalink

Added the upcoming Korean movie "Our Happy Ending"'s page to HanCinema database...More

[PIFF] Jang Dong-gun "Warrior" is Asian western film

Source | 2010/10/11 | Permalink

American film producer and director Barrie Osborne and Korean actor Jang Dong-gun pose during a photocall of a press conference for film "The Warrior's Way" held at the Haeundae Grand Hotel in Busan, South Korea on October 9, 2010. [Chae Ki-won/10Asia]

The storyline of "The Warrior's Way" may sound like that of a typical western film -- a man leaves behind his past to live in peace at a quiet village when one day, the village is attacked by intruders and the man fights till his death to defend the village.

However, as director Sngmoo Lee explained at a press conference in Busan on Saturday, his latest feature flips the story to have as Asian warrior fight for a Western village, the warrior played by Korean actor Jang Dong-gun...More

Rain says done lifetime's worth of running for "The Fugitive Plan B"

Source | 2010/09/27 | Permalink

Korean singer and actor Rain poses during a photocall of a press conference for upcoming KBS TV series "The Fugitive Plan B" held at the Lotte Hotel in Seoul, South Korea on September 27, 2010. [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]

Asian pop sensation Rain, who is constantly on the run as a fugitive in upcoming TV series "The Fugitive Plan B", has said he has had to run so much that he has probably done a lifetime's worth of running.

In the romantic comedy investigative action series about a conspiracy involving a hefty sum of money going missing in times of the Korean War 60 years ago, Rain plays Gee-woo, a private detective at an international secret agency who becomes pegged as the murderer of his own old friend...More

"Reign of Assassins" to open in theaters on October 14

Source | 2010/08/26 | Permalink

John Woo film "Reign of Assassins"

Upcoming John Woo movie "Reign of Assassins" will be opening in local theaters on October 14, according to the film's importer Sane Company Inc. on Thursday.

"Assassins", starring top Korean actor Jung Woo-sung and Chinese actress Michelle Yeoh, is about an ordinary postman (Jeong) with extraordinary martial arts skills. Yeoh will be playing a skilled female assassin and the two come together to fight off a gang and return the ashes of a mystical Buddhist monk...More

[INTERVIEW] Model and actor Kim Jae-wook - Part 2

Source | 2010/08/20 | Permalink

Kim Jae-wook [Chae Ki-won/10Asia] 

10: I heard that you spoke almost no Korean when you first returned to Korea around the time you entered elementary school. It must've been very stressful not being able to speak your native language at that age.
Kim Jae-wook: Hmm... This is from a very long time ago but my dad and older brother actually spoke Japanese well but not my mom. So me and my mom communicated in a very weird way and instead, I think I knew how to communicate with Koreans who don't speak any Japanese. I learned the Korean alphabet only after I got into school, while everyone else was learning what one plus one is, but kids young early at that age.

10: The strict rules and uniform system of Korean middle and high schools is difficult for even normal Korean students to bear. I heard you tended to ask many questions about irrational regulations regarding clothing or hair when you were in school. I'm curious to know how you beared through those times because such conflict leads to extreme clashes or the student quitting school.
Kim Jae-wook: Once, when I was in middle school, I told my parents that I might not go to high school while we were in the car on our way to eat out. My dad isn't the type that interferes with my life but for the first time that day, I remember him saying, "But still, how about you study humanities in high school?" And being able to join a band when I go to high school played a big part too...More

[INTERVIEW] Model and actor Kim Jae-wook - Part 3

Source | 2010/08/20 | Permalink

Kim Jae-wook [Chae Ki-won/10Asia] 

10: Well since you're done with the drama, you'll have to start your activities with band 'Walrus'. How did this come about in the beginning?
Kim Jae-wook: We're all friends from college. It started with the three of us but we didn't have a bassist so one person joined recently. I had always wanted to work with him and it turns out he finished serving in the military early this year so I half forced him to join. (laugh)

10: I heard that it's been nine years since Walrus was formed. You weren't able to pursue your activities as a band very actively so what was the driving force behind you remaining together?
Kim Jae-wook: I'm not sure about that either. And I don't know about the other members but I at least have never given up on the fact that I'll do a band. Added to that, I always thought, 'I'm going to do a band. I'm going to do it with these guys'...More

[INTERVIEW] Avex Asia Managing Dir. Buddy Marini - Part 2

Source | 2010/08/18 | Permalink

Avex Asia Managing Director Buddy Marini [Avex Asia]

Q: In what ways do you think the NAFF could do better?
A: I would like to see more Korean company participation. I think there's a lot of creative people there such as Korean directors and producers with projects, but I'd like to see more industry people there. And I think programming-wise it's always been very interesting and keeps getting more interesting
so it's good but I'm feeling that maybe this year, perhaps it's because of the industry situation as a whole, I didn't feel it was as dynamic as last year. The first time I came I had fun meeting all these independent directors and producers that I usually don't meet. And last year I thought it was getting bigger in scope. But this year, I felt it wasn't as good as last year because the Korean companies weren't here. Last year, industry people from Seoul made appearances here but many didn't this year. I think the fest needs to, or at least NAFF, they need to incorporate this aspect more...More

Mourning Over Andre Kim's Death

Source | 2010/08/16 | Permalink

The late Andre Kim is talking with the actress Kim Hee-sun at the fashion show held in Seoul in 2001.

People in the entertainment industry were mourning over the news of Andre Kim's death while saying, "A great star in Korea has fallen".

The late Kim had been involved in the entertainment industry and formed close family-like relationships with many stars during his life. In particular, actors such as Kim Hee-sun, Cha In-pyo, Jang Seo-hee, Choi Ji-woo, Ryu Si-won, and Cha Seung-won had shared special affection for Kim and each other for a long time, and they had been loved by fans for appearing on the catwalk at Kim's fashion shows, and they looked deeply shocked by the news that Kim had passed away on August 12...More

US teens savor Korean culture

Source | 2010/08/13 | Permalink

By Aileen Kim

Flashing cameras, sounds of laughter and gazes of pure amazement were the scene at Korea's historic Changdeok Palace in Jongno-gu, Seoul, Tuesday. Exclamations of awe came from 99 high school students from the U.S., who were participating in the "Korea-US Youth Network" program organized by the Korea Foundation.

"It's amazing. I love the ornate decorations, it's very colorful. I'm impressed by how well it is preserved", said Meryl Kus, 16, from the state of Maryland.

Changdeok Palace wasn't the only hotspot on the itinerary. With Korea's history and culture as the theme of the day's agenda, the students visited...More

[INTERVIEW] Female singer BoA - Part 3

Source | 2010/08/09 | Permalink

BoA [SM Entertainment]

Q: How did your Hollywood movie project come about?
BoA: Personally, I am a huge fan of the film "Step Up". That film made me re-think about street dancing and I gained passion for dancing. When I heard that the writer of that film offered me a role, I was very surprised. There has been a lot of talk over the years that I would start acting, but I wasn't up for it because my original job is being a singer and I was worried that once I started to act, it would look like acting was my full-time job. But I like that this movie is a dance film. As a singer, there is no opportunity to leave behind my dancing as a work of its own. But being able to express a two-hour movie with dancing, I think that, in itself, will be of great help to my career.

Q: Don't you want to keep acting, by any chance?
BoA: So far I don't have a huge interest in other areas...More

[INTERVIEW] Actress Kim Ha-neul - Part 1

Source | 2010/08/06 | Permalink

Kim Ha-neul [Chae Ki-won/10Asia]

10: At the last press conference for "Road No. 1", you had said you don't know whether you'd be able to pull off the role of your character Soo-yeon but once the drama started, it felt as if I was watching an angel.
Kim Ha-neul: She's full of love. And she knows how to love.

10: It's to the extent that it seems transcendental. You embrace characters like Soo-hyuk (played by Kim Jin-woo) who is a nuisance and look after Myung-ho with whom you are not related in any way.
Kim Ha-neul: I don't know. I myself fully understand and sympathize with her. The situation has been expressed in a slightly dramatic way but wouldn't anyone in her situation do what she is doing? And don't you feel sorry for Soo-hyuk? In how he is trapped inside an ideology...More

Son Dam-bi: 'Taking Criticism of My Singing Is My Assignment'

Source | 2010/07/30 | Permalink

As they say that good times come with the bad, star singer Son Dam-bi (27), who recently released a mini album entitled "The Queen", is now facing unfavorable reviews for the first time.

The music video for the title song "Queen" has been talked about with allegations of plagiarizing an American drama, and the video of her appearance on TV was posted on an Internet website with the MR (Music Recorded) removed, so she has been pointed out for her lack of singing ability. She eventually confirmed the plagiarism from the music video production company and the problematic scene has been deleted from the music video, and now she is singing the chorus live, although she had originally planned not to sing it live to focus on dancing...More

Ryu Jin: 'I Was Happy While Playing Lovely Character Han Do Hoon'

Source | 2010/07/16 | Permalink

Actor Ryu Jin (38) always looked serious, cold, and cool-headed.

He used to be a son of a rich family and a member of the elite, and he used to be very popular among women, so he usually wandered between two women. Thanks to these characters that he has played so far, he completely melted into similar roles while acting in popular dramas such as SBS's "Love You a Thousand Times", KBS's "Mom's Dead Upset" and " Who Is My Love", and MBC's "General Hospital 2". He seemed to settle down as a "stereotyped stable actor". But, in the fourteen years since his debut, he has shown a shocking rebellion...More

'Barefoot Dream' fuels football fever

Source | 2010/06/24 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff reporter

With South Korea set to compete Saturday in the World Cup round-16 match, the football fever here is hotter than ever.

A timely release is "Barefoot Dream", about the so-called "Hiddink of Korea" that coaches penniless East Timorese children (named after the Dutchman who led the Taeguk Warriors to the 2002 World Cup semifinals).

Made with the support of the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs and having been the first ever feature film to be screened at the U.N., "Barefoot" is a solid, politically correct (and a bit sugar coated) sports movie that is all about the love of the game.

It showcases all the hallmarks of the classic underdog movie, with adrenaline-pumping sequences, but is also so much more. It is a humane tale about "jeong" or collective compassion that touches upon the timeless themes of hope and redemption while offering an incisive observation of a developing country.

Yet even for those who could care less about malnourished kids kicking ball in an obscure place, it offers lighthearted entertainment with mass appeal to audiences both near and far. Like any good movie, it transports...More

'N. Korean teens exposed to South Korean dramas'

Source | 2010/06/14 | Permalink

By Kwon Mee-yoo
Staff reporter

More than half of North Korean teen defectors watched South Korean films and dramas when they were in the world's most reclusive nation, a recent survey showed Monday.

Yoon Sun-hee, a professor of journalism and mass communication at Hanyang University, questioned 144 students at Hangyeore Middle and High School, a special education facility set up in 2006 for young boys and girls who have defected, and found that 79 or 56 percent of them had seen South Korean movies and TV programs while in the North.

Pyongyang strictly bans its people from viewing South Korean entertainment to keep them from being "corrupted" by Western or capitalist culture.

The latest survey also confirmed that many North Koreans are exposed to the South's pop culture, known as "hallyu".

The professor admitted that though it was hard to generalize the result to a nationwide level, the outcome was surprising. "I cou...More

Meet Korean, Japanese master directors

Source | 2010/06/13 | Permalink

The Korean Film Archive will offer 10 works by Lee Doo-yong, a pioneer of Korean action films, for free on its video-on-demand website through June 30./ Courtesy of KOFA

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff reporter

The Seoul arts scene is becoming increasingly eclectic with an international scope: various concert halls are presenting Chopin, Schumann and Mahler-themed performances to celebrate major anniversaries of the composers and the Seoul Museum of Art is showcasing the largest retrospective of Rodin.

Not to be left out, those looking for something timeless in cinema with a hint of nostalgia should head to the Korean Film Archive (KOFA), Seoul this summer to celebrate Akira Kurosawa's centennial or revisit Im Kwon-taek's masterpieces, or watch Lee Doo-yong's films online.

Lee Doo-yong

Lee Doo-yong is known as the first Korean director to have been invited to the prestigious Cannes and Venice film festivals in the 1970s and '80s, way before Korean cinema came into vogue.

KOFA is offering fans a chance to watch his works for free online until the end of June, on its video-on-demand website .

The veteran director is recognized as a pioneer of local martial arts films, and the action in his films presented a unique style distinct from that of Hong Kong action movies. But he is also called "the alchemist of genre" for experimenting with different film genres.

Ten fil...More

Jung Woo-sung to attend Venice film fest with John Woo pic

Source | 2010/06/07 | Permalink

Korean actor Jung Woo-sung [Asia Economic Daily]

Korean actor Jung Woo-sung will be making his international debut at the 67th Venice Film Festival in September through new John Woo pic "Reign of Assassins".

According to the film's importer Sane Company Inc. on Sunday, the festival committee has invited Jeong and Woo to premiere their martial arts flick at the event, which kicks off in Venice on September 1.

Woo will also be receiving a lifetime achievement award at the film fest this year, organizers said...More

Kim Jae-wook says Kim Nam-gil "like a time bomb" - Part 2

Source | 2010/05/20 | Permalink

Q: I think you've lost a bit more weight. Is it because of the hernia?
Kim Nam-gil: Hm, because director Lee gives me a hard time? (laugh) I actually slept after eating ramen at five in the morning so it's a relief to hear that. (laugh) I lost weight once for film "Lovers Vanished and just didn't have to gain weight after shooting "Queen Seon-deok" for six, seven months. I'm not trying to lose weight but I just do and there are also scenes where I have to take off my clothes so...

Q: How was it working with director Lee Hyeong-min?
Kim NG: I miss director Park Hong-gyoon from "Queen Seon-deok". Park was someone who is into the details but director Lee is also like that but to the extent that I felt like I was suffocating. So I called director Park recently and told him I miss him. (laugh)

Actor Kim Jae-wook [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]

Q: There are articles mentioning your military entry. How do you think this will pan out?...More

2010 Dream Concert Lineup Revealed

Source | 2010/04/21 | Permalink

It's one of the hottest k-pop concerts of the year! The 16th annual Dream Concert will be featuring some of the hottest stars, like it does every year. This year's line-up includes two of the most successful comebacks made in 2010: Rain and Lee Hyori. Also included on the recenly finalized list are the Wondergirls, Girls' Generation, SS501, Super Junior, 2PM, SHINee, Afterschool, Kara, U-Kiss, f(x), BEAST,T-ara, MBLAQ, 4minute, Rainbow, ZE:A, Davichi, and F.cuz.

This ye...More

Kim Yunjin weds movie producer in Hawaii

Source | 2010/03/29 | Permalink

Korean actress Kim Yunjin [Zion Entertainment]

Korean actress Kim Yunjin married movie producer in a surprise wedding ceremony in Hawaii today, according to her agency Zion Entertainment.

An official at Zion told Asia Economic Daily over the phone Monday that the actress "will hold a small wedding with only the bride and groom's immediate family in attendance".

The nuptials reportedly took place on a privately owned beach this morning around 8 a.m. (Seoul time) and the "Lost" actress did not even wear a wedding dress...More

Go Hyun-jung, "Haeundae" win grand prize at PaekSang Arts Awards

Source | 2010/03/29 | Permalink

Korean actress Go Hyun-jung at the 46th PaekSang Arts Awards held at the National Theater of Korea on March 26, 2010. [Asia Economic Daily]

Top Korean actress Go Hyun-jung and "Haeundae" producer JK Youn won the grand prize at the 46th PaekSang Arts Awards, held at the National Theater of Korea on Friday.

Ko claimed the top crown in the TV category for her portrayal of royal concubine Mi-shil in historical drama "Queen Seon-deok" while producer Yoon was awarded the same honor in the film category...More

[INTERVIEW] "High Kick Through The Roof" Actress Yoo In-na

Source | 2010/03/19 | Permalink

"I was chosen? Thank you so much", is was what Yoo In-na said after receiving news she was selected as our next interviewee. The public have started to become curious about her, not just because of her role in MBC sitcom "High Kick Through The Roof", but because they are curious to find out more about this actress whose popularity has been increasing. She had been in training under her agency YG Entertainment for over a year to make her acting debut at the not-so-young age of 27 so we asked her the recent change in her life means to her.

Actress Yoo In-na [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]

10: Your popularity right now is uncomparably high from when you first made your debut. Do you get treated differently for that? Boy band 2AM said their meals have changed since reaching No.1 on music programs...More

Road No. 1 So ji-sub, Kim Ha-neul, Yoon Kye-sang's first impressions

Source | 2010/02/22 | Permalink

* First broadcast: TBA (estimated to be June)

Drama "Road No. 1"

Leading actors So Ji-sub, Kim Ha-neul and Yoon Kye-sang tell of their first impressions!

2010's most highly anticipated drama series is about the turbulent times of the Korean War, "Road No. 1". Its actors So Ji-sub, Kim Ha-neul and Yoon Kye-sang took it upon themselves to introduce the production and talk about life on set for the eager viewers.

So Ji-sub (Jangwoo) "This is a once in a lifetime opportunity".
"Road No. 1"'s Jangwoo is a character who lives through the Korean War, his emotions of love just as desperate as his fight to survive the war. An empathetic character who finds himself agonizing between friendship with a comrade and a ...More

Jang Seo-hee wins grand prize at SBS Drama Awards

Source | 2010/01/04 | Permalink

Korean actress Jang Seo-hee at SBS Drama Awards [SBS]

Korean actress Jang Seo-hee won the grand prize at the SBS Drama Awards, held at SBS' Open Hall on December 31.

Jang was awarded the top honor for her role in "Temptation of Wife", which was one of the most-watched and most controversial dramas of the year for its sensational storyline.

"I didn't want to cry. I wanted to be cool about receiving [the award]".. said Jang in her acceptance speech. "I thought I wouldn't be able to win this because of the genre. I would like to thank writer Kim Soon-ok... I was in a slump for three years but she helped me make a comeback"....More

Yoo Jae-suk Named Top Entertainer at Year-End Event

Source | 2009/12/30 | Permalink

Comedian Yoo Jae-suk poses after receiving the Grand Prize for MBC's Entertainment Awards for the fifth straight year at the broadcaster's auditorium in Yeouido, Seoul, Tuesday.
/ Courtesy of MBC

By Han Sang-hee
Staff Reporter

The Grand Prize for MBC's Entertainment Awards went to comedian and television host Yoo Jae-suk, Tuesday night.

The 37-year-old has now won the award for five consecutive years, including grand prizes from networks such as KBS and SBS, becoming the first Korean celebrity to do so.

"I am so grateful, but I am also very sorry. It's so easy to become boring when the program has been running for a long time, but I will strive to bring change and new items to the table", he said after receiving his award, mentioning his gratitude to fellow nominees Kang Ho-dong, Lee Gyung-gyu, Park Mi-sun and Lee Hwi-jae.

"I'm becoming a father next year and I hope I get to enjoy my programs with my child even through the year 2022", he added.

Yoo has long been one of the top television hosts in Korea, appearing in four shows: MBC's "Infinite Challenge" and "Come Over", SBS' "The Family is Out" and KBS' " Happy Together ". His modesty and sense of humor has grabbed the audience's attention, which also led him to earn the title, "MC of the Nation".

Yoo made his debut in 1991 through KBS' University Gag Contest, but failed to attract attention, while his buddies, such as comedians Kim Yong-man, Nam Hee-suk and Park Su-hong, became top entertainers. Several years passed, and Yoo finally made a name for himself with his witty comments...More

Park Chan-ok Named Female Director of Year

Source | 2009/12/15 | Permalink

By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Staff Reporter

Acclaimed Korean director Park Chan-ok was named "Female Cineaste of the Year" by an organization of female film professionals.

Park, who directed "Paju", received the award Tuesday during a ceremony of the organization Women in Film Korea, held at Cine Cube in Gwanghwamun, Seoul. Women in Film Korea is a non-profit organization of female professionals workin...More

Director Im Kwon-taek Brings 101st Film

Source | 2009/12/01 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

Master director Im Kwon-taek may have 100 films under his belt, but he considers his upcoming project, "Dalbit Gireo Oligi" ("Hanji"), his "debut piece".

"I hope this will be called my first ― rather than 101st ― film, a debut piece that breaks away from the framework of the 100 Im Kwon-taek-marked films I've made in the past", the 75-year-old cineaste told a crowded press room in Seoul, Tuesday, ahead of the shooting that begins next month.

He even "broke up" with his old working partner, cinematographer Jung Il-sung, in order to venture into the world of digital cinema for the first time. Two years ago at the opening reception of the 1st Cinema Digital Seoul film festival (CinDi), he had said it was a genre that he "must learn".

"I just decided to run headlong into it", he said, "I wanted to contradict expectations and work with something new and contemporary, and I hope to project myself into the medium while learning its advantages". He will work with Hwang Gi-seok, a young cinematographer who is experienced in digital films. "But he's young, so I'm w...More

Rain: 'Keep Trying to Make Your Dream Come True'

Source | 2009/11/23 | Permalink

-Rain, who has been promoting his movie "Ninja Assassin" in North America, during his interview on November 21 (local time) in Hollywood, Los Angeles, USA.

"'Ninja Assassin' helped me dream. If I keep trying, someday I will top the box office", said Rain (real name Jeong Ji-hoon) during his interview on November 21 in Los Angeles. He is the first Korean actor to play a lead in a major Hollywood movie. He has been promoting his movie "Ninja Assassin" in North America since last week. On November 19, he attended a prestigious red carpet event in Hollywood and a screening. On November 21, he was to give interviews to some 30 media agencies based in Los Angeles.

While saying that his movie had received positive feedback in the U.S., Rain added that what mattered most was taking on new challenges rather than producing good results. Rain said he wanted to publicize Korean culture in Hollywood.

With regard to his H...More

[ChanMi's star news] Remember Lee Eui-jung?

Source | 2009/07/24 | Permalink

Actress Lee Eui-jung who has been away from the screens for a while is back in the hot topic for her fans!

She has revealed her boyfriend of three years on her mini homepage!

In her recent photo of her that she came in public, she looks more mature and stronger.

Her boyfriend is known to be 7 years younger....More

Bong Joon-ho's Latest Challenge in 'Mother - 2009'

Source | 2009/07/04 | Permalink

By Kyu Hyun Kim

Kim Hye-ja marvels in an overwhelming thriller

Small country town, Korea. Do-joon (Won Bin, returning to the screen after four years of military service) is a pretty-faced young man, treated as a village idiot and perpetually causing minor havoc with his ne'er-do-well friend Jin-tae (Jin Goo). Do-joon's devoted mother Hye-ja (Kim Hye-ja) is left to clean up the aftermath.

Then one day everyone is stunned to find Do-joon arrested for the murder of a high school girl Ah-jung (Moon Hee-ra). The evidence seems incontrovertible, but Hye-ja launches her own awkward investigation into the murder case, hoping to nab the real culprit. However, everyone in the town, including Hye-ja and Doo-jun themselves, seems to harbor some dark secret, threatened to be uncovered by her sleuthing.

While the film's plot and set-up superficially resemble Bong's based-on-real-life police procedural "Memories of Murder", "Mother - 2009" is even more emotionally shocking and devilishly manipulative of the viewer's expectations.

Director Bong spares no authority figure in his searing indictment of contemporary Korean society, all the more effective due to the black-comic tone it ass...More

Yun Mi-joo Attracting Attention as 'Chubby' Girl in 'The Accidental Couple'

Source | 2009/06/08 | Permalink

What makes the KBS2 drama "The Accidental Couple" more entertaining is its many unique supporting characters, including the two of Gu Dong-baek's bosses: the team's director (Yoon Joo-sang), with a signature laugh, and manager (Kim Kwang-kyu), a famous sycophant.

Park Gyeong-ae is another notable character who's drawing growing attention for her portrayal of a fu...More

Actor Touches Comfort Women in Novel

Source | 2009/04/03 | Permalink

Staff Reporter

Among a slew of the books written by celebrities these days, actor Cha In-pyo's book is conspicuous for many reasons.

First of all, the book is the first novel ever penned by an actor in Korea. Secondly, it is not a vanity project or self-focused ego-fluff, but rather deals with the issue of comfort women. Comfort women refer to the sexual slavery of numerous women, mostly Korean but also including Chinese, Filipino, Vietnamese, and Southeast Asian nationalities and even Europe, by the Japanese military in its imperial expansion years.

Cha's involvement in the book titled "Goodbye Hill" goes back to 1997, when he first heard the story of "Grandmother Hoon". She had been hauled off as a comfort woman to Cambodia during the colonial period and continued living in that country for 70 years until she visited her native Korea in 1997.

The 41-year-old actor's interest was first piqued upon hearing the news reports. So for the past decade, he worked on the idea, researching, writing, and editing his manuscript.

Set in Tiger Village at the foot of Mt. Baekdu in the 1930s, a youthful hunter, Yongi comes to a village with his hunter father to capture the tiger that killed his mother, and encounters Suni, the daughter of the village chief.


Two Indie Directors Conquer Local Cinema

Source | 2009/02/08 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

Two independent films are creating a buzz in the local cinema. "Old Partner", a small documentary, rewrote box office history for the genre, while "Daytime Drinking", a mini-budget road movie, created hype even before its release.

The first South Korean documentary to compete at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival, "Old Partner" has drawn in over 100,000 viewers since its release Jan. 15. The number may seem small when compared to box office scores of local blockbusters, but it is the largest ever tally for an independent movie and is doubly significant considering that documentaries are a minority within the minor genre.

"Daytime Drinking" debuted at the 9th Jeonju International Film Festival and went on to win awards at several overseas events, including Locarno last year. A triumph of creativity over pitifully meager resources, the movie is receiving as much media spotlight as anticipated blockbusters. It is a breath of fresh air for Korean cinema, which has seen the failure of many expensive, star-studded ventures.

Both films, moreover, feature quintessentially Korean themes that have universal appeal: "Old Partner" nostalgically documents "hanwu" (native Korean oxen), though as a friend rather than beef, and "Daytime Drinking" is made complete with soju, the favorite drink among Koreans. The Korea Times met with the directors of the two films ― Lee Chung-ryoul to discuss his heart-wrenching documentary, and Noh Young-seok to laugh about his ticklishly funny road movie.

Man's Best Friend, Cow

The Year of the Ox has so far been a lucky one for Lee. "Selling over 100,000 tickets isn't all that great", said the "Old Partner" director, jokingly complaining about non-stop press meetings in an interview with The Korea Times. "I also hope the Hanwoo (hanwu) Association doesn't send me a written protest", said Lee about unintentionally dissuading some viewers from consuming hanwu. The 42-year-old...More

[ChanMi's movie news] Kim Min-jung becomes a fashionista in "The Scam"

Source | 2009/01/28 | Permalink

Kim Min-jung becomes a financial manager for the wealthy politicians and businessmen, even their hidden money! She is a perfectionist and a workaholic financial manager, Yoo Seo-yeon in this new film, "The Scam".

She is a woman who can handle money business and dirty work with perfection where money is key to power and fame, thus, she definitely needs to look it!

Kim works with a stylist Kim Noori who is a famous movie costume designer.

The character meets political leaders and wealthy elites for her career, thus, she needs a professional look and bold character to fulfill her work as she wears career woman outfits. Inside this facade, she is a woman with a gentle charisma. Her hairstyle is also clean with her hair up in a bun. Her luxurious accessories also bring her a bold and feminine point in her outfit....More

Women in Film Korea (WIFK) honor LIM and GONG

Source | 2008/12/19 | Permalink

The members of Women in Film Korea, an organization of filmmakers, critics, professors, and technicians devoted to representing women professionals in the Korean film industry, held its annual awards ceremony on December 17 at the Art Sonje Center in Seoul.

The recipient of the Woman Filmmaker of the Year award for 2008 was director Yim Soon-rye for her critical and commercial hit "...More

Tongyeong City to Build 'Park Kyung-ni Literature Museum'

Source | 2008/12/15 | Permalink

Tongyeong City in South Gyeongsang Province recently announced its plan to build a humble literature museum to commemorate the lifetime achievement of the late novelist Park Kyung-ni, a Tongyeong-native who passed away earlier this year in May.

The museum will be built over a 4,465㎡ land area. The building will consist of one underground floor and one ground floor and will be built in a rectangular shape. Honoring the humble spirit of the lat...More

'Adrift' Is Unsentimental Yet Touching

Source | 2008/09/04 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

Last November, Japanese heartthrob Joe Odagiri ("Tokyo Tower") caused a traffic jam in Seoul as local fans flocked from one theater to another to catch a glimpse of him. Before the Oct. 9 release of his South Korean film debut, Kim Ki-duk's "Dream", he visits the big screen through the brilliantly manic film, "Adrift in Tokyo".

Odagiri can, in Hollywood parlance, be compared to Johnny Depp with his mass appeal despite (or perhaps because of) his eccentric outfits and unusual roles in independent or experimental genres. "Adrift" is no exception, and the unshaven actor sports wild curls that make him look like an aging Elvis who has just rolled out of b...More

Chungmuro International Film Festival

Source | 2008/08/28 | Permalink

Organizers Open Door to Exchanging Cinematic Cultures

By Han Sang-hee
Staff Reporter

Korea has seen a line of interesting film festivals and the home of Korean cinema, Chungmuro, is bringing yet another one next month. The 2nd Chungmuro International Film Festival in Seoul (CHIFFS) will celebrate retro to recent films from Sept. 3 to 9.

CHIFFS will show fans what Chungmuro was built for: a strong backbone for the local cinema industry, the venue of communication between the old and young and the door to exchanging cinematic cultures with others. This year, CHIFFS will offer some 170 films from more than 40 countries, categorized into 11 different sections.

The first Chungmuro festival was held under three themes ― Discover, Restoration and Creation _ and these will be used again this year, but with more depth and insight. If last year's event set up the basic structure of the event, this year will further expand these concepts. New sections have been added to intensify the three themes while others have been developed to bring a more interesting approach: the International Competition to "discover" hidden cinematic treasures and the CHIFFS Masters where fans can look into the life and work of celebrated cinematic figures.

The Official Selection is the trademark section of CHIFFS, offering classic black and white movies along with hidden gems. With various sub-sections including Restored and New Prints, The Centenary of David Lean and A Tribute to Deborah Kerr, this part of the festival will bring the basic concept of the whole festival to the audience ― appreciating the past, discovering the new and restoring the valuable.

The International Competitio...More

Daejong Film Fest Showcases Trends

Source | 2008/06/29 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

South Korea's esteemed 45th Daejong (Grand Bell) Film Festival held in southern Seoul, showcased the latest local box office trends, with its stronghold of original thrillers, stylistic period pieces and experimental projects. While superstars grabbed the limelight as expected, hitherto overlooked veteran actors and young debutant directors shined the most, suggesting that blatant star power, be it a reputed director or ravishing screen beauty, don't always guarantee ticket sales or awards.

The red carpet event took place outside the COEX Convention Hall in a sea of blinding camera flashes as glamorous cineastes filed in. Screen beauties like Han Chae-young, Park Jin-hee and Shin Ae were elegant in cleavage-bearing, long evening gowns while others such as Kim Yunjin and Go Ara chose mini-dresses to show off their figures.

Actress Kim Ah-joong, who won last year's award for Best Actress ("200 Pounds Beauty"), and popular announcer Choe Gi-hwan hosted the show. To add more sparkle to the star-studded event, pop group the Wonder Girls took to the stage to deliver bubbly dance music.

"The Chaser", the f...More

Moscow Honors Im Kwon-taek with Retrospective

Source | 2008/06/04 | Permalink

An impressive 12 film retrospective, surveying the work of legendary Korean director Im Kwon-taek, will be held in the Russian capital of Moscow this June. Running the 19th to the 28th at the Moscow State Central Cinema Museum in Arbat Square. Director Im has completed 100 feature films in his lifetime, winning the best director prize at Cannes in 2002 for "Chihwaseon".

Cinema Museum director Naum Kleiman will introduce the retrospective with director Im and his wife especially invited to Moscow for the event. Kleiman, with the help of Im An-cha, vice-chairman of the committee for Korea's Jeonju International Film Festival, selected 12 representative films out of the director's 100-feature oeuvre.

Films included in the program are "Genealogy" (197...More

Oh Jung-hae Spreads Korean Beauty through Music, Acting

Source | 2008/05/07 | Permalink

Traditional Korean music singer cum actress Oh Jung-hae is one of the true artists of today. Her refined appearance and heartrending voice embody traditional Korean beauty.

Debuting through the old fashioned Miss Chunhyang pageant and best known for her appearance in the film 'Seopyeonje', she is foremost associated with a tidy image after donning hanbok (Korean attire). But casual Western clothes also suit her well. Any fan of Korean film will remember her in Seopyeonje, a sensational hit of the time, in which she painstakingly acted out her singing role.

Over the years, she has done many different things -- appearing in dramas, films, hosting a radio show and teaching at university -- in places all over the country, including Seoul and the Gyeongsang and Jeolla provinces.

Singer turned Actress Pursues Diverse Activities

Oh was afraid that her distinguished singing talent would...More

Books Map Out Korean Film History

Source | 2008/04/25 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

Korea is increasingly becoming an important film market ― ranking sixth and seventh in the world in terms of audience size and ticket sales, respectively, according to the Korean Film Council.

Last week, the Asia junket for the anticipated blockbuster "Iron Man" took place in Seoul ― the second big Hollywood event to be held here the one for since last summer's "Transformers".

In international film festivals, more and more Korean filmmakers and actors are stealing the limelight, notably actress Jeon Do-yeon (2007 Cannes Best Actress) and directors Kim Ki-duk (2004 Best Director awards at both Venice and Berlin), Park Chan-wook (2004 Cannes Grand Prix) and Im Kwon-taek (2002 Cannes Best Director, 2007 Dubai Lifetime Achievement Award).

Local production companies and investors are now out to play in the big league. Last year, Shim Hyung-rae's "D-War" marked the first widely released Korean film in the United States, while domestic talent whipped up the special effects for " Assembly ", China's first blockbuster. Recently, Taewon Entertainment launched a "global film project" starring international stars Maggie Q and Andy Lau.

In order to better understand the present, of course, you need to glance back at the past. Two books offer comprehensive retrospectives of Korean cinema: the Korean Film Archive brings "Korean Film History" while the Korean Film Council (KOFIC) offers "Korean Cinema From Origins to Renaissance". Both offer 100 years of film history in 10 chapters, decade by decade.

Film specialist Jung Jong-hwa provides a short but all-inclusive anthology in "Korean Film History" (271 pp., 8,000 won). It's a nice pocketbook for Koreans and is filled with movie stills and posters as ...More

[Movie Review] 'Fate' a tale of two gangsters

Source | 2008/03/18 | Permalink

"Fate" (Sukmyeong) packs plenty of heart-pumping action sequences on the strength of high-profile Korean Wave stars but its heavy reliance on stylized images without offering background details stops short of expectations. In the movie, we see the downfall of a handsome and kind-hearted gangster Woo-min (Song Seung-heon) who attempts to hit it big by attacking a casino along with his close friends including Cheol-jung (kwon Sang-woo).

Somehow, they manage to escape with bags of cash, but it turns out that Cheol-jung, a short-tempered, foul-mouthed money-will-solve-everything villain, has sold them out for a reward in a secret contract that he hopes will land him a comfortable life.

After all, Cheol-jung's unwavering belief about life is that money talks the loudest and nothing else, even lifetime friendship, counts.

Playing a scapegoat, Woo-min serves a two-year prison term, showcasing his willingness to sacrifice for his friends. Once out of prison, however, he realizes that s...More

Reporter-Turned-Actress Debuts in 'Night and Day'

Source | 2008/02/19 | Permalink

By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Staff Reporter

New actress Seo Min-jung-I is attracting attention for her supporting role in the critically acclaimed film "Night and Day". It was recently revealed that Seo used to work as a reporter at the Kwangju Ilbo.

"Night and Day", directed by Hong Sang-soo, received praise from critics and audiences when it premiered in the 58th Berlin International Film Festival last week. It was one of four Asian films competing for the much-coveted Golden Bear award.

The film revolves around a successful artist, played by ...More

'The Devil's Game' plays in wrong arena

Source | 2008/01/21 | Permalink

"The Devil's Game", directed by Yoon In-ho, is a thriller with plot twists playing an important role to intrigue the audience and ignite their imagination. But the movie might have had much greater impact if it had been a comedy.

Based on a Japanese comic series, "The Devil's Game" revolves around the wildly imaginative situation where two people change their bodies. But the film has some big holes in its logic, undercutting its claim to be a hard-core thriller.

A street painter named Hee-do (Shin Ha-kyun) does not have much money, but he is nice and kind, especially to his innocent-looking girlfriend Hye-rin (Lee Eun-sung). Their relationship, however, is not without problems.

Hye-rin's family is debt-laden and gangsters often arrive and demand repayment...More

[Year-end Review : Movies] 'Sunshine' offers hope to Korean cinema in 2007

Source | 2007/12/24 | Permalink

The Korean movie industry got off to a shaky start this year, due to the weakened market position of local flicks versus Hollywood blockbusters, but it received a big shining ray of hope from director Lee Chang-dong's thought-provoking drama, "Secret Sunshine".

Jeon Do-yeon, the heroine of "Secret Sunshine", grabbed the prestigious Best Actress award at the 60th Cannes Film Festival in May, setting the upbeat tone for the domestic film industry.

The 34-year-old actress won international acclaim for her brave and inspiring depiction of a grieving Korean woman struggling to rebuild her life in a new city in "Secret Sunshine", the first picture in four years by Lee Chang-dong, a former Korean culture minister.

Despite the positive turn on the filmfest front, the local movie market faced increasing pressure this year. Although the market volume of the Korean film industry remains relatively solid, with 104 films released between January and November this year, the number of moviegoers is steadily declining, and the profitability of major production houses is worsening, leaving a slew of projects stranded.

"The number of Korean movies with box-office influence is going down, and the campaign to export Korean films to foreign markets is nowhere near the target level", said Shim Young-seop, a leading movie critic. Meanwhile, Hollywoo...More

[Photo News] Korean movie director honored

Source | 2007/12/17 | Permalink

Korean movie director Im Kwon-taek receives this year's Lifetime Achievement Awards at the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) on Saturday (Dec. 15).

The award is a retrospective tribute to influential filmmakers from the West, the Arab world, and the East. Last year, Academy Award-winning director Oliver Stone, Syrian film m...More

Great filmmaker Im to get French Legion of Honor

Source | 2007/11/29 | Permalink

Korea's top filmmaker Im Kwon-taek will receive the Order of the Legion of Honor from the French government on Friday, in recognition of his decades of contributions to the field of visual arts.

The ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. at the residence of the French ambassador in Hap-dong, Seoul.

"Im Kwon-taek will be awarded the title of Chevalier de l'Ordre de la Legion d'Honneur by French Ambassador Philippe Thiebaud for his long and active career, and especially for his contribution to defending the movie industry and to promoting Korean movies in France", the French Embassy said in a press release.

Im has already won numerous awards, including the best director award at the 53rd Cannes Film Festival. The embassy said the decoration is also meant to honor Im's dedication to the celebration of the 120th anniversary of diplomatic relations between France and Korea.

Created in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, the Legion of Honor is the highest award given by the French Republic, regardless of the social status or nationality of the recipients. Im, 71, is also set to receive the lifetime achievement award at the fourth Dubai International Film Festival, which will run from Dec. 9. The Dubai film fes...More

France to Award Director Im Kwon-taek

Source | 2007/11/28 | Permalink

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

The French government will award Korea's iconic director Im Kwon-taek, 71, with the title of Knight of the Order of the Legion of Honor, France's highest order (Chevalier de l'Ordre de la Legion d'Honneur).

Launched in 1802 by Napoleon, the Legion of Honor is granted regardless of the nationality of its recipient.

The title recognizes Im's long and active career, especially his efforts to defend the movie industry and promote Korean cinema in France. Im has directed 100 films and won various awards, including the Best Director Award at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival for "Chihwaseon". He also received UNESCO's Fellini Medal that year.

Furthermore, the decoration acknowledges the filmm...More

Shinwa to Reunite Next Month

Source | 2007/11/13 | Permalink

By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Staff Reporter

K-pop's longest running male group Shinhwa will reunite in December, with a new single and concerts in Japan and China. Fans are eagerly awaiting the group's comeback, especially since it will celebrate its 10th anniversary in March.

According to their management agency, Shinhwa's new single "Winter Story 2007" will be released on Dec. 6. This is their first single since they released "Winter Story 2006-2007" last January.

The six-member group will hold a concert in Nagoya, Japan also on Dec. 6, to be followed by two concerts on Dec.8 and 9 at Saitama Super Arena in Tokyo. Shinhwa will travel to Shanghai, China for another concert on ...More

[MOVIE REVIEW] 'Punch Lady' throws high kicks but misses its cinematic target

Source | 2007/10/17 | Permalink

Spousal abuse is not a new cinematic theme, but "Punch Lady" takes a fresh approach to the tricky issue by portraying the psychological trajectory of a battered Korean woman. The question is whether the likely climax -- whatever triumph the victim will manage to get -- meets viewers' expectations in a swift manner, just like the bullet-speed punch of a professional fighter.

After all, this movie, the debut feature by Kang Hyo-jin, involves a professional K1 fighter, Ju-chang (Park Sang-woo), and his timid, shy, self-conscious 36-year-old wife Ha-eun (Do Ji-won). The opening is telling: the couple is engaged in a K-1 fight in the living room, with all the vicious tricks fully deployed ... well, at least by the seemingly crazy husband. What is hard to understand, especially when the film is set in the 2000s, is why Ha-eun still sticks around this...More

"Lost" Star Daniel Dae Kim Feels Lucky About Success

Source | 2007/10/08 | Permalink

Being an Asian American in Hollywood, Feeling Home in Busan

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

BUSAN _ For actor Daniel Dae Kim, who shot to international stardom through the hit ABC TV series "Lost", the walk on red carpet at the 12th Pusan (Busan) International Film Festival meant returning to his native town.

"I'll be honest. I was a little scared (walking down the red carpet). I'm used to it in the U.S. and Europe. But because I'm from here, it mattered a little bit more. I haven't felt that way in about four years... It was also the longest red carpet I've walked on", he said with a slight chuckle.

"I have very fond memories of this area _ my imo (aunt) still lives about half a mile away, my samchun's (uncle's) family lived up on the hill, and I was born in Seodaeshin-dong. I was telling my parents I was coming to Busan, and `Make your country proud', they said", the 39-year-old said with a big hearty laugh.

Unlike his stern character Jin from ABC's hit TV series "Lost", Kim was very down-to-earth and easy-going in person, flashing a bright smile every now and then. Voted one of the "Sexiest Men Alive" in 2005 by People Magazine, the actor's sharply chiseled features _ high cheekbones _ were just as charming in real person.

Kim had immigrated to the United States with his family as a baby, and grew up in New York and in Pennsylvania ever since. He said he is happy to back to the Haeundae area; ...More

Hwang Jae-bock Creates Women's Dream Gowns

Source | 2007/06/22 | Permalink

By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Staff Reporter

What do actress Han Ga-in, the daughter of United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the wife of star baseball player Lee Seung-yeop have in common? All these women got married wearing exquisite wedding gowns made by couture designer Hwang Jae-bock.

Hwang, one of the most sought after designers in the country, is known for creating gowns that can turn any woman into a princess on her wedding day.

In an interview with The Korea Times at her shop in Gangnam, Hwang cannot help getting excited when talking about designing dream wedding gowns. "A woman wears a wedding dress only once in a lifetime. For that day, you have to feel really beautiful. Since it's an important day in your life, it's important to find a designer that will give you your dream dress", she said.

Hwang has a keen sense of what a Korean bride, or any bride for that matter, wants to wear. After all, she has been designing wedding gowns for Korea's elite for o...More

Jeon wins Cannes best actress prize

Source | 2007/05/28 | Permalink

CANNES, France -- Korean actress Jeon Do-yeon, who stars in a tragic movie on death and faith, "Secret Sunshine", won the Cannes film fest's best actress award Sunday.

The 34-year-old actress was acclaimed for her brave performance as a grieving wife and mother in the Korean melodrama, the first picture in four years by Lee Chang-dong, a former Korean culture minister.

"I can't believe I'm here", said Jeon, wearing a silver evening gown.

"There are many fabulous actresses here at the festival, and I would like to represent them all here tonight. It is a great honor for me to have this prize".

She appears in nearly every scene of Lee's two-and-a-half-hour-long film, portraying Shin-ae, a piano teacher who moves with her son to the hometown of her late husband, whose death is still the source of nearly unbearable pain.

She dotes on her young son as a link to his father, and the two have a palpably close relationship.

When, in a cruel and unexpected twist in the story, the small boy is abducted and killed, Shin-ae turns to evangelical Christianity on the advice of her pharmacist, a devout believer, as a means of dealing with her grief. Filled with religious fervor, she decides to visit her son's murderer in prison to tell him she has forgiven him. But she is horrified when the killer tells her with a serene smile that he has repented and God has already offered him absolution.

"Who is God to forgive him before I have?" she asks her Christian friends in a rage.

Jeon is known in Korean cinema as a chameleon who fully inhabits her roles. She shot to stardom at home with her debut in the 1997 romance "...More

'Bunt' Scores and Wins Sans Sacrifice

Source | 2007/04/26 | Permalink

By Kim Tae-jong
Staff Reporter

A bunt in a baseball game is not as spectacular and exciting as a homer, but it is as precious as it is generally a sacrifice for a larger cause.

The new film, "Bunt", is the story of a boy who is mentally challenged, but wants to contribute to society by doing what he can do best, which is bunt.

Directed by Park Gyoo-tae, the film revolves around Huh Dong-gu (Choi Woo-hyuk), an 11-year-Old Boy with an IQ of 60, which often sees him...More

Filming World From Female Angle

Source | 2007/04/08 | Permalink

By Kim Tae-jong
Staff Reporter

Hungarian director Marta Meszaros is a pioneer in female cinema. She has directed 70 films over the past 50 years, many of which dealt with women's issues such as pregnancy, abortion and gender discrimination.

Meszaros said that people can see things differently and more closely through the eyes of women. However, the sharp distinction between male and female films is not only unnecessary but also wrong.

"There is no such thing as a female film. It doesn't matter if a film is made by a man or woman", she said Friday during a news conference at the Artreon Theater in Shinchon, northern Seoul. "What really matters is whether or not it is a good film".

Although her international reputation largely comes from her films regarding issues on women, her interests are not limited to that topic but aroused from everything around her, she said.

"You are mistaken if you think I have mainly dea...More

Shin Sang-ok Youth Film Festival

Source | 2007/02/22 | Permalink

A film festival named after late Korean master director Shin Sang-ok will hold its inaugural edition this year. The Shin Sang-ok Youth Festival held a special reception February 15th to announce the launch, agenda, and awards program for the event which will take place August 10th to 14th in Gongju city, South Chungcheong Province.

The reception was attended by around 300 film industry representatives including director Lee Joon-ik and actors Ahn Sung-ki and Park Joong-hoon. The festival's purpose is to discover outstanding films by young directors and to foster a...More

Scenario Writer Song Kil-han Honored

Source | 2007/02/14 | Permalink

The South Korean film industry recognized the achievements of the acclaimed scenario writer Song Kil-han and honored him with a ceremony for his lifetime contributions in January. Among his ninety something works are scenarios for the Im Kwon-taek directed classics "Mandala" (1981) and the 1987 "The Surrogate Woman" (Sibaji). He is praised for his contemplation of humanism, a characteristic of his work.

Being recognized for lifetime achievem...More

Director's Cut Awards Diversity of Films

Source | 2006/12/28 | Permalink

The Director's Cut Awards bestowed the Best Director Award upon Hong Sang-soo for the film "Woman on the Beach" (Haebyeonui Yeoin), the film depicts the struggle of relationships between men and women. Lee Song-hee-il was awarded the Best Independent Director Award, his gay themed "No Regret" (Hoohwehaji Anha) broke bo...More

Hong Sang-soo Named Best Director

Source | 2006/12/22 | Permalink

Hong Sang-soo of "Woman on the Beach" fame was chosen the best director by his peers.

At the Director's CUT Awards held Thursday evening, Hong was honored with the Best Director of 2006 award. Hong's latest work "Woman on the Beach" won an overwhelming number of votes for its mellow plot and witty twists.

The Best Independent Director of the Year award went to ...More

2006 Korea Cartoon Animation and Character Awards Ceremony held

Source | 2006/12/11 | Permalink

Hosted by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and organized by the Korea Culture and Content Agency (KOCCA, CEO: Suh, Byung-Moon), the 2006 Korea Cartoon Animation and Character Awards held its awarding ceremony last December 6, at 5 PM, at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Yeoksam-dong, Seoul.

Yang Yeong-Soon's 1001 Nights of Folktales by Yang, Yeong-Soon received the Grand Prize in the Cartoon category, Heewon Entertainment (CEO: Kim Yeong-Ae) won the Grand Prize in Animation for the company's Janggeum's Dream, and ICONIX Entertainment (CEO: Choi, Jong-Il) and OCON (CEO: Kim Il-Ho) shared the Grand Prize in Character for its Pororo. Each of these grand-prize winners received the President's Award and 10 million Korean won.

Meanwhile, Y...More

Veteran actress Lee to receive Lifetime Achievement Award at FWF

Source | 2006/12/11 | Permalink

Veteran actress Lee Kyung-hee will be awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at this year's Festival of Women Filmmakers.

Lee, 74, was chosen by Women in Film, the organizers of the festival, for her cinematic contributions throughout the '50s and '60s, which include appearances in films like "Simcheongjeon (Story of Simcheong)" and "Janghwahongryeon (A Tale of Two Sisters)". Lee's performance in melodramas gave her the nickname "Queen of Tears".

"Since debuting in 1955 through 'Mangnani Biseo (The Rogue Secretary)', Lee's pas...More

Shinhwa Chosen Best Korean Singer Overseas

Source | 2006/12/07 | Permalink

Foreign internet users have selected the six-man group Shinhwa as the best Korean singer of the year, according to Arirang International Broadcasting on Wednesday. The group's song "Once in a Lifetime" received 60 percent of the votes cast by foreign internet users.

Shinhwa beat last year's winner, Kangta, who came in second with 20.3 percent followed by TVXQ with 17.3 percent. Super Junior took fourth place followed by Bada, ...More

[MOVIE REVIEW]'Solace' twists melodrama to its advantage

Source | 2006/11/27 | Permalink

Sometimes, we watch films to satisfy our burning (yet often unfulfilled) desire for a better world - a cheap entertainment that whets our insatiable appetite for a sugarcoated fantasy that we hope will help replace our cheaper reality.

"Solace", directed by Byun Seung-wook, defies such convention. The world it portrays is far from beautiful: Life is tough, all the characters are trapped, relationships are hard to forge and even harder to maintain.

In-gu (Han Suk-kyu) is a likable pharmacist. He smiles a lot, is friendly, and pleasant to talk with. His drugstore is small but he seems comfortable in the cramped space, playing an online poker game in his leisure time and ordering Chinese food for a quick lunch.

But his life is anything but happy-go-lucky. Older brother, In-seop (Lee Han-wi),...More

First Love

Source | 2006/11/23 | Permalink

"Once in a Summer" is shaping up to be the love story of the year.

"I'm just thankful. It's an archetypal answer, but… could I say anything else? I came to the hotel late from drinking in Busan, and my fans were still waiting for me".

He lives in a house in Gyeonggi-do, and a Japanese woman bought the house next to his. When men see that type of fan, they usually say, "I wonder if their husbands don't say anything". This reporter asked what he would do if his future wife did the same thing with another actor. He immediately answers, "I would feel bad". He is also a typical Korean man.

The movie starts with a college professor Seok-yeong (Lee Byung-hun) searching for his past love Jeong-in (Soo Ae) on a TV sho...More

Shinhwa Gives Successful Performance in Thailand

Source | 2006/08/21 | Permalink

The six-man group Shinhwa, currently on an Asian tour, has held a successful concert in Bangkok, Thailand, following performances in China. The group held its first Thai concert on Friday at the Impact Arena, where many world-famous artists, including Korean singer Rain, have performed.

Shinhwa began the concert with the song "Perfect Man" from its fifth album and captivated the audience throughout the two-hour concert with its outstanding dancing and singing abilities. It performed all its hit songs from its eight-year career since its debut in 1998, including "Wild Eyes", "I Pray 4 U", "Hey, Come On", "Once in a Lifetime", and "How Do I Say".

The audience welcomed the group by holding cheering pickets written in Korean as well as English and Thai. They also brought other objects such as...More

Song Yoon-ah Gets First Billing at Last

Source | 2006/08/14 | Permalink

The actress Song Yoon-ah is as frank and open as her smile. "Do you remember that my name was always billed after my male partners in my previous films? They said Shin Hyun-joon and Song Yoon-ah in "Face", Sol Kyung-gu and Song Yoon-ah in 'Lost in Love' and Park Joong-hoon and Song Yoon-ah in 'A Masterpiece in My Life', something like that". But her latest horror movie ...More

Jung Doo-hong, best martial arts movie director in Korea

Source | 2006/06/14 | Permalink

One person is drawing extraordinary attention in the Korean movie industry these days. He is an indispensable figure in action films. The man in focus is director Jung Doo-hong, who is considered the best martial arts director in Korea.
Devotion and purity

Jeong is widely regarded as the representative martial arts director for movies and is arguably the best stuntman in Korea. There are numerous episodes involving Jeong. We can easily spend half a day listening to stories about him from movie directors who worked with him, including Kim Yeong-bin, Jang Hyeon-soo and Kim Seong-soo. If we put together all the episodes about him derived from the production of movies and TV dramas, we could easily find enough stories to publish two volumes. Jeong has always been highly determined and oftentimes excessively opinionated, and ready to cause a big stir. But everyone who has gotten accustomed to working with him wants to work with him again. The reason is simple. When the director of a movie wants to create any type of scene, Jeong produces it no matter what. More often than not, directors who wished to produce a specific scene have to prevent Jeong from taking on the challenges, rather than Jeong refusing to do them, which attests to his devotion and enthusiasm.

When Jeong is acting in a scene, or guiding other actors in their performances, his eyes look so passionate and determined that one might find them scary. But anyone who has seen him smile is immediately put off guard. In normal times, he is a friendly and seemingly naive soul -- just a simple man whom director Kim Seong-soo has nicknamed "peasant".

Taekwon Boy's dream
Jeong was born in 1967 in Chilsan-ri, Imcheon-myeon, Buyeo-gun, South Chungcheong Province. In st...More


Source | 2006/05/15 | Permalink

Korean TV dramas reach out further

Three MBC dramas - "Dae Jang Geum (Jewel in the Palace)", "Gung (Palace)" ("Princess Hours") and "Hotelier" - were sold to the Middle East and Africa this month, taking the Korean Wave out further to even more distant countries.

"Dae Jang Geum" was sold to Jordan's top distributor MEM on May 8 and will be aired throughout the Arab nation soon, MBC said Sunday.

A few episodes of the popular drama set in the Joseon Dynasty palace kitchen were introduced to the Arab world in February and received a warm welcome, which led to the signing of the contract.

The Middle East's interest in Korea's historical TV dramas is expected to grow through the fusion ...More

Go South

Source | 2006/04/27 | Permalink

by Mun-Myung Huh

This movie ("South of the Border") being the first by director Ahn Pan-seok, who previously worked as PD and directed TV dramas such as "Roses and Bean Sprouts", uses humane paradoxical aesthetics to make modern people, who float in buoyant freedom and greed, ponder on the things they take for granted by portraying special people who have deserted their nation and family in order to survive. At a glance, the plot seems a bit flat. Pyongyang Mansoo Art Team horn player Sun-ho (played by Cha Seung-won) and War Memorial guide Yeon-hwa (played by Jo Yi-jin) are in love with each other. The two lovebirds are ex...More

Shin Hyun-joon Redeems Himself in Another Intense Part

Source | 2006/04/25 | Permalink

"Public duty" and "faith" are keywords in an interview with the actor Shin Hyun-joon ahead of the release of his film "Barefoot Ki-bong". The actor's mother reportedly prays nonstop for six hours a day, and his older sister is said to have the gift of prophecy. The actor himself is now in his third year of volunteering to help bathe and look after children with cerebral palsy.

In a recent meeting with the press in Japan, the actor got a little carried away while talking about missionary work, until finally the head of the company that sponsored the event and invited the actor said, "Could you please just talk about something else". The actor ...More

Film Guru Shin Sang-Ok Dies at 80

Source | 2006/04/19 | Permalink

By Nigel DSa - Assistant Editor / Staff Writer

Korean cinema giant, Shin Sang-ok, died on April 11th, 2006 at Seoul National University Hospital where he was being treated for chronic liver disease. Director Shin had made over 70 films, many of them Korean cinema milestones, during his lifetime, and was preparing what might have been his final project, a historical feature dealing with Genghis Khan, when he passed away at the age of 80.

Shin directed such classics as "Mother and a Guest" (1961), "The Red Gate" (1963), "The Eunich" (1968), and "Farewell - 1973" (1973). He was born in 1926 in Cheongjin, North Hamgyeong Province, in what is now North Korea. In 1945, he gradu...More

Shin Sang-ok, Pioneer of Korean Cinema, Passes Away

Source | 2006/04/12 | Permalink

Director Shin Sang-ok, a household name during the 1960s and 1970s, passed away at 11:39 p.m. Tuesday at Seoul National University Hospital due to complications following a liver transplant.

Born in Korea's northernmost region of North Hamgyeong Province in 1926 during Japan's colonial rule of the country (1910-45), Shin graduated from an arts school in Tokyo before carving a name for himself as one of the pioneers of Korea's movie industry. He released his first film in 1952.

Shin was extremely prolific throughout his career, pulling along the fledging Korean film industry during the 1960's and 70's. He directed 68 films and produced 169, in addition to working on other productions as a cinematographer. Some of his best w...More

'Scary' Turns Love Comedy on Its Head

Source | 2006/04/06 | Permalink

By Kim Tae-jong
Staff Reporter

What do you get when you mix a Romantic Comedy with a thriller, combining "lovey dovey" scenes involving a couple in love with those of bloody murders?

These seemingly unmatchable ingredients produce hilarious jokes in "My Scary Girl (Talkom, Salbolhan Yonin)".

At a glance, the movie tries to tell a cliche love story between a naďve man and attractive woman, but soon it enjoys a sudden ride of twists and parodies on conventions and formulas too often used in many romantic comedies.

Directed by Son Jae-gon, the movie revol...More

Korean American Feted at Florida Film Festival

Source | 2006/04/05 | Permalink

Korean American director Mora Mi-ok Stephens won the juror's grand prize at the Florida Film Festival.

The movie "Conventioneers" by Korean American motion-picture director Mora Mi-ok Stephens won the juror's grand prize in the Florida Film Festival which has been recently closed.

The film "Conventioneers" is Mora Mi-ok Stephens's feature length debut movie. Mora Stephens also won the coveted John Cassavetes Award first time as a Korean American at the 21st Independence Spirit Award in Santa Monica, California on last month...More

Hallyu, Cultural Coexistence or Imperialism?

Source | 2006/02/26 | Permalink

By Kim Ki-tae
Staff Reporter

Hallyu, widespread popularity of Korean pop culture in East Asia, is an unprecedented experience for the nationals.

Koreans, traditionally under the heavy cultural influence of China and, relatively recently, Japan and the United States, seems to feel both wonder and jitters, just like a lifetime supporting actor who for the first time takes up an unfamiliar lead role.

Changbi Publishing's symposium, titled "Korea's Cultural Power Spreading in East Asia", is an attempt to illuminate the hallyu phenomenon. The symposium was held to mark the 40th anniversary of Socially-Active, a quarterly magazine. Japan's Ritsumeikan University co-hosted the symposium.

Held on Friday and Saturday in Kyoto, Japan, the international symposium delved into the wide spectrum of hallyu's implications, bearing the potential to develop into another form of cultural imperialism or pave the way for a multicultural community in Northeast, or East Asia.

Lee Wook-yon, professor of Chinese literature at Sogang University, noted that the "Korean wave" has most, of all, enhanced Korea's gloomy image, customarily associated with the division and the former military regimes, in East Asia.

According to Lee, Korea's "hybridized" cultural peculiarity has appealed to Asians. "Korea has deftly filtered Western cultu...More

Korean Moviestars Nominated for Asian Excellence Awards

Source | 2006/01/16 | Permalink

The innovative new American cable channel AZN Television, dedicated to serving the burgeoning Asian American community, announced on January 11 2006, its nominees for the 2006 Asian Excellence Awards. A large number of Korean actors appeared on the nominee list, showing once again the power of the Korean wave.

The Asian Excellence Awards, featuring the Remy Martin X.O Honors, is intended to highlight the outstanding achievements of Asian Americans in the fields of entertainment, sports, film, music fashion and science.

The Remy Martin X.O Honors are non-competitive categories and awards will be bestowed for Lifetime Achievement, Inspiration and Bridge. Co...More

Pusan Film Fest Director Kim Dong-ho Honored

Source | 2005/12/05 | Permalink

Kim Dong-ho, second from left in the back row, stands with other winners at the Korean Film Awards in Seoul, Sunday. Kim received the lifetime achievement award at the ceremony.

By Park Chung-a
Staff Reporter

Kim Dong-ho, a festival director of Pusan International Film Festival (PIFF) was honored with a lifetime achievement award at the prestigious fourth Korean Film Awards for his contribution to the domestic movie industry on Sunday.

When 68-year-old Kim was appointed as head of the now Korea Film Council in 1988, the Korean filmmaking circle openly objected to having "an unprofessional figure" at the post. Now 17 years later, few _ indeed, probably none _ would dispute...More

From Singer to Combat Sports Fighter, an Actor Is Born

Source | 2005/10/27 | Permalink

He is a man who has nothing but his own flesh and bone. He is a man to whom women swear to give their lives. He is a combat sports fighter who has never won a single match. He is Gang Bok-gu, the protagonist of the new drama "This Cursed Love" -"A Love to Kill" (Korean title: "Ijugilnomui Sarang"), which will debut on KBS2 at 9:55 p.m. on October 31.

But there is another man behind the role: A man who auditioned a dozen times to become a singer, but was turned down each time because of his looks; A man whose dream was to get an award for best new artist and dedicate it to his mother. That man is Rain, the singer.

He is also Jeong Ji-hoon - Rain, the actor who plays the ill-fated Gang Bok-gu in "A Love to Kill".

The new drama is written by Lee Kyeong-hi, who wrote one of last season's biggest hits, "Sorry, I Love You", and is directed by rising star Kim Kyoo-tae. ...More

'The President's Last Bang' won Lino Brocka Award in Philippines

Source | 2005/10/25 | Permalink

Korean movie, 'The President's Last Bang' (directed by Im Sang-soo) won Lino Brocka Award of Cinemanila International Film Festival to be closed in 25th in Philippines.

According to the film festival committee, 'The President's Last Bang' won Lino Brocka Award which is regarded as the best film award, and Kim Dong-ho,festival director of PIFF (Pusan International Film Festival) won Lifetime Achievement Award.

The 7th Cinemanila International Film Festival, the biggest film festival in Philippines, chose 'In Casablanca Angels Don't Fly' by Mohammed Asli (Morocco) as this year's Grand Jury Prize.

'President's Last Bang' Wins Best Picture at Philippine Festival

Source | 2005/10/24 | Permalink

SEOUL (Yonhap) _ "The President's Last Bang", a South Korean film, was named best picture at the CineManila International Film Festival in the Philippines, its producers in Seoul said Monday.

The film, directed by Im Sang-soo, won the Lino Brocka Award, the best picture prize, while Kim Dong-ho, director of the Pusan International Film Festival, was selected as the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award, they said.

"The President's Last Bang" details the night in 1979 when then President Park Chung-hee was assassinated by h...More

Philippine Film Fest Honors 'Last Bang'

Source | 2005/10/24 | Permalink

"The President's Last Bang" on Monday won the Lino Brocka Award for best picture at the Cinemanila International Film Festival in the Philippines.

Director Im Sang-soo's film is a dark comedy based on the 1979 assassination of South Korean president Park Chung-hee by his own intellige...More

Asia's largest film festival Pusan International Film Festival Runs Oct. 6-14

Source | 2005/09/15 | Permalink

The 10th PIFF to Show 307 Films from 73 Nations
By Tom Pauken II
Associate Editor

The Pusan International Film Festival keeps getting better. Now they are celebrating the 10th year anniversary, featuring 307 films from 73 countries. A compilation of films that is sure to please. The opening ceremony will begin on October 6th; daily screenings from October 7th-13th; closing ceremony will be held on October 14th.

People, the world over, don't think about Pusan as the second largest city in South Korea, but as the host of the best film festival in Asia if not the world.

The event will focus on Asian cinema featuring 87 Asian premiers. As a matter of fact, Hsiao Hsien's version of "Three Times" will be shown as the opening film, while the closing film will be "Wedding Campaign" by director Hwang Byung-kuk. These two movies attracted world-wide attention.

Don't worry, plenty of seating is available, but you must purchase your tickets on schedule. You can use ADVANCE Online Purchases only on September 15th-16th from 9:30am - 10:00pm for opening and closing films. General screening tickets will be made available from September 23rd to October 14th...More

Venice Film Fest to See Solid Korean Presence

Source | 2005/08/30 | Permalink

Hayao Miyazaki, Tsui Hark, Ang Lee, George Clooney, Park Chan-wook, Gwyneth Paltrow, Matt Damon, Lee Young-ae, Ji Jin-hee, Kim So-yeon: this year's Venice Film Festival will attract a stellar crowd from East and West.

The 62nd Biennale lasts for 11 days from Aug. 31 to Sept. 10 with 54 full-length films screened -- 19 in the competition, where they will vie for the Gol...More

'Empress Chung', the first animation film made through a co-production of the two Korea, is open

Source | 2005/08/21 | Permalink

Seoul Business Agency (CEO & President Kwan Oh-nam) announced that the Seoul Ani Cinema, owned by the Seoul Animation Center, will show 'Empress Chung,' the first animation film jointly produced by the two Koreas, for 3 weeks starting on August 18. The animated film has premiered in the South on August 12 and in the North on August 15, the day marking the 60th anniversary of Korean liberation from Japanese colonial rule.

Based on a famous Korean folk tale of a daughter who sacrifices herself to restore her blind father's eyesight, the film has been produced jointly by animators from both South and Nor...More

'Crying Fist' brings about hot interest from abroad

Source | 2005/07/21 | Permalink

Korean movie 'Crying Fist' starring Choi Min-sik and Ryoo Seung-bum, is bring about hot interest from abroad.

Following the Cannes International Film Festival on late May, 'Crying Fist' was commented on favorably in The Karlovy Vary Czech Film Festival as well as The Montreal Fantasia International Film Festival recently.

Buoyed by such favorable comments, this Korean cinema will be invited to a host of international film festivals such as Melbourne, Athens, San Diego, Vancouver, and Stockholm by September ...More

Shin Ah Cast to Star in Chinese Drama

Source | 2005/06/24 | Permalink

Rising star Shin Ah has been cast to play the lead in the Chinese drama "Golf Girl", emerging as a promising hallyu star. Shin held a press conference on June 15 at a golf club in Beijing, China that was attended by over 100 local reporters and broadcast throughout China by the country's largest broadcaster, CCTV.

"Golf Girl", a 20-episode drama whose production begins this coming October, will air in China in February of next year. In the story, Shin plays "Lutsyou", a sassy student who learns golf from her father, an ardent golf fan. But when he dies after his business goes bankrupt, she learns from his journal that one of h...More

Cho Seong-mo Benefits Child Affected with Leukemia

Source | 2005/05/03 | Permalink

Singer Cho Seong-mo appeared on KBS TV1's "Love Request" on April 30, where he consoled a 27-month toddler named Hwang Su-young who is struggling with complications from leukemia. The little girl had undergone surgery twice and was considered cured but was hospitalized again due to hemolytic anemia.

Hemolytic anemia is a disease that occurs when the marrow fails to produce red blood cells fast enough to replenish ones destroyed during blood circulation. The only way for patients affected with the disease to survive is through blood transfusion.

Su-young's story is even more heart-wrenching because her mother was diagnosed with acute hepatitis a month ago, and her father has been nursin...More

Ryu Soo-young Captures Hearts of Female Viewers

Source | 2005/03/25 | Permalink

Actor Ryu Soo-young, who plays a caring husband in the KBS Monday-Tuesday miniseries "18 vs. 29", has drawn the attention of many female viewers recently for his charismatic yet cute portrayal. Although the popularity of the drama is ascribed largely to the charming acting of its lead actress Park Seon-young, the female audience credits Ryoo with perfectly portraying a husband doing his utmost to mend his relationship with his wife.

But very few know that Ryoo landed this role after many twists and turns. Although he was the first actor sought for the role when the drama was still in its initial stages of production, he had to square off with such formidable rivals as Kim Min-jong and Shin Hyun-jun. Ryoo was notified that ...More

Television Dramas Make Marrying Young Look Hip

Source | 2005/03/21 | Permalink

By Park Chung-a
Staff Reporter

Teen marriage emerged as the main theme of many domestic movies last year. They included "My Little Bride," "Marrying School Girl, " and the most recent and most controversial "Jenny, Juno," which deals with the marriage of middle school students following an unexpected pregnancy.

Now, television dramas are also joining the trend. Last year's popular KBS drama "Little Bride" was a love story between an 18-year-old girl and 28-year-old prosecutor ending in marriage. SBS' "My Sister-in-Law Is 19" also featured the marriage of convenience between a high school girl and a doctor.

In line with such a trend, many current popular TV dramas deal with the subject of marrying young and feature young mothers who are much younger than those in real life.

The recent KBS TV drama "...More

Kim Ah-jeong Hones Acting Skills in "Emperor of the Sea"

Source | 2005/03/15 | Permalink

Kim Ah-jeong, who plays a military escort in the KBS TV2 special series "Emperor of The Sea", says she has taken more interest in acting since she began appearing in the drama. "Emperor of The Sea" is Kim's debut work. The production team says they liked Kim's calm and dignified, yet winsome, demeanor when she auditioned for the role of Jeong-yeon's partner.

Like any novice, Kim has a lot to worry about when it comes to acting. But to her, the filming set is the best possible school because it presents her with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn from seasoned actors such as ...More

Stars Under Extreme Stress

Source | 2005/02/24 | Permalink

Depression Drove Actress Lee to Suicide: Police

By Bae Keun-min
Staff Reporter

Mourners bid farewell to late actress Lee Eun-joo during a funeral on Thursday at a hospital run by Seoul National University in Pundang, just south of Seoul.

Police concluded that depression drove Lee to suicide. She had received treatment for her condition at the hospital.

Doctors said she had complained of insomnia and suffered severe stress due to her work.

Lee, the star of such hit films as "Taegukgi" (2004) and "The Scarlet Letter" (2004) as well as the recent MBC television drama "Firebird (Pulsae)," was found dead in...More

Film preview - "Crying Fist" to Premiere in April

Source | 2005/02/19 | Permalink

Two Ordinary Men on the Brink Fight for Their Lives

By James Noh
Staff Reporter

In the midst of a Korean cinema boom, full of candy-fluff movies and over-stylized action movies, comes a poignant sentimental drama about life and human nature rooted in the everyday man. Hot on the heels of his commercially successful action comedy "Arahan", director Ryoo Seung-Wan brings us a touching story of two men on the brink of mental and physical bankruptcy who decide to fight back against the harsh world one last time.

Presented by ShowEast and produced by Sio Flim in association with Bravo Entertainment, Choi Min-Sik and Ryoo Seung-Beom star in this action drama, set to be released in April of this year. This is one premier you don't want to miss.

"Crying Fist" is a moving film about two men who brave their way through a rough life to come up against each other in one great fight which will decide their destinies. Based on two true stories, Ryoo combines the two tall tales of the once championship winning Hareruya Akira and the amateur boxing champion Seo-Chol into a personal epic of fate and destiny.

Shown through the physical pain of connecting fists, the mental agony of losing loved ones, and the penetrating anguish of realizing the unfairness of life, "Crying Fist" reaches deep into our minds and changes our way of thinking. Breaking away from his regular action portfolio, Ryoo paints a picture of life on the edge seen through the eyes of two ordinary men in extreme hardship with his unique stylish sense to create a human drama that will tug on your heartstrings.

Round 1: Kang Tae-Shik - A washed-up boxing star turned doormat, this is as low as it gets.

Tae-shik, once a silver medalist in the Asian Games, now gets paid to be beaten up in place of others in the middle of the street. Gambling debts and a fire in a factory have consumed everything he has e...More

Im Kwon-taek Given Honorary Golden Bear by Berlin Film Festival

Source | 2005/02/13 | Permalink

Korean director Im Kwon-taek (69) became the first Asian awarded the Honorary Golden Bear at the 55th Berlin International Film Festival on Saturday. The award, given in recognition of lifetime service to film, has been given to only 18 people, including Elia Kazan, Sophia Loren and Oliver Stone. Festival director Dieter Kosslick said that in terms of the director's prolific nature and diverse range of topics, Im was an unrivaled figure in Asian film. He praised Im's clear, beautiful point of view, innovative film technique and the emotion he evoked in the 99 films the director had directed in 40 years.

Director Im agreed to a telephone interview with the Chosun Ilbo early Sunday morning, immediately after the award ceremony.

How do you feel about being the first Asian to w...More

'Old Boy': 'An Audience Award' at the Stockholm 15th International Film Festival

Source | 2004/11/28 | Permalink

The 15th Stockholm International Film Festival's official website said that director Park Chan Wook's movie 'Old Boy' has come to receive 'An Audience Award'.

According to the Film Festival's official website, 'Old Boy' has occupied 'An Audience Award' thanks to hot response the audience in the Stockholm 15th International Festival which was held from Nov. 15 through Nov. 28.

An audience Award thanks to hot response of the audien...More

'Old Boy' Wins Stockholm Film Fest's Viewers' Choice Award

Source | 2004/11/28 | Permalink

Local film "Old Boy" was honored with the viewers' choice award at the 15th Stockholm International Film Festival. The Star! Audience Award is given to the film screened at the event that the audience votes to be most popular.
This is not the first time that director Park Chan-wook's broody tale of revenge has received recognition on the international stage. "Old Boy" garnered the...More

A Dialogue between Film Directors Song Hae-sung and Iwai Shunji

Source | 2004/10/13 | Permalink

by Gab-Sik Kim

Director Song Hae-sung's movie "Yeokdosan" is about a Korean wrestler who became a hero in Japan. " Love Letter " by Iwai Shunji has drawn the biggest audience in Korea among reality films. The two directors each presented their new works in the Ninth Pusan International Film Festival; Song Hae-sung (40) showed his film "Yeokdosan", and Iwai Shunji (41) brought his new film "Hana and Alice" to the Korean audience. On October 9, Dong-A Daily invited both directors to a hotel lounge for an interview.

Song and Iwai share some common features. Both are in their early 40's, and they have a one-year age gap. Also, they both have good looks like actors and are notorious for their stubbornness during the filming process.

Iwai's new film "Hana and Alice" will meet Korean audiences in theaters on November 12. Song's 10 billion won blockbuster "Yeokdosan", in which 60 percent of the scenes are filmed in Japan, opens in theaters on December 15, and is scheduled to meet Japanese audiences around June next year. Let...More

'Hypnotized' uncovers vulnerabilities in love

Source | 2004/08/05 | Permalink

Glasses, a clock, pencils, a lamp and other sundry objects float around in a surreal atmosphere. Timelessness shrouds the room. Suddenly, everything floating in the air drops, breaking into pieces. Shards of glass pierce the delicate skin of a woman. What's really hurt, however, is not her body but her lonely heart.
"Faceless Beauty" ("Eolgul eopneun minyeo") opening this Friday, explores the fragility of the human heart when love is denied. Few words can describe the pain when love is entirely rejected and there is no possibility of having your love returned in this lifetime.

In the film, Ji-su (Kim Hye-soo) leads a troubled life because of her peculiar illness - a borderline personality disorder. Borderline patients tend to have almost unlimited fear of being rejected by the people around them. At the same time, they always feel that they may soon lose their loved ones.

As reflected by the floating objects that she alone sees in her room, Ji-su is struggling with a sense of emptiness and directionlessness in her life. She wants to write a novel, but nobody believes her words, and she seems to be in a state of constant delusion. Meanwhile, her husband, a successful foreign exchange dealer, is having an affair with a colleague.

At the hospital she meets Suk-won, a psychiatrist who feels strong compassion for her. A year later when Suk-won returns from the United States and happens to meet Ji...More

'My Mother, the Mermaid' a tribute to Korean mothers

Source | 2004/06/28 | Permalink

A typical Korean mother, or "ajumma", is tough. She defies misfortunes and poverty. She doesn't care about her looks or well-being as long as she can raise children and send them to good schools. She hangs in there even if her husband continually guarantees loans for his friends when he can ill afford to do so.

"My Mother, the Mermaid", which opens on Wednesday (June 30) nationwide, opens a fantasy door to the largely ignored world of Korean mothers who have led difficult lives, sometimes forgetting about their own beauty and romantic past.

The film opens with a fantastic image of female fishing divers swimming like mermaids on Jeju Island. But the scene suddenly shifts to that of a Korean mother named Yeon-soon (Goh Doo-shim) crying and screaming at a funeral.

The funeral is for a friend of her husband, who left behind a great deal of debt. Yeon-soon's husband, who never rejects a call for help from his friends or neighbors, guaranteed the debt for the Dead Friend.

Under the notorious personal loan guarantee system, known as "bojeung", he has to pa...More

Korean Animation Mateo at Theatres on July 24

Source | 2004/06/15 | Permalink

A cute yet somewhat out of place pig pirate Mateo will begin his adventure at theatres on July 24. This fun animation about adventures beyond one's imagination that a group of amateur pirates go through is sure to appeal to audiences of all ages and genders.

Mateo and his friends are trouble makers who dream to become legendary pirates. These very lovable rebels at first plan to attack a convenient store in their village, but end up running errands for the store owner.

One day, a plane of Princess Cutlet who was running away from the Wolf Gang falls down to the village, and Mateo and his friends hold the princess as their hostage. Then the real pirates appear and the Mateo group and Princess Cutlet live through the once-in-a-lifetime adventures....More

Far East Film Fest Closes

Source | 2004/05/06 | Permalink

By Paolo Bertolin
Special Correspondent
UDINE, Italy _ The sixth edition of Far East Film Festival (FEFF), the Italian event that takes place in the town of Udine and is renowned as the biggest showcase for East Asian popular cinema in the West, came to a close last Friday evening, with the announcement of the recipients of the Audience Award.

Kang Je-gyu's all time box office record-breaker "Taegukgi", which screened in its international premiere as official closing event of the festival just prior to the final counting of votes, was presented as runner-up in a preference list led by Yamada Yoji's Academy Award nominated "The Twilight Samurai". On the receiving of his laurel, director Kang warmly thanked Udine's audiences for their support and expressed the hope that his film could find the same welcoming response with all Western audiences.

The threesome of first-cl...More

Moon So-ri Receives Swedish Film Award for Best Actress

Source | 2003/11/25 | Permalink

STOCKHOLM, Sweden - German film director Michael Schorr received awards for best film, best script and best new director for "Schultze Gets the Blues" at the annual Stockholm International Film Festival, the AP reported.

"With quiet humor and unaffected imagery, this highly personal and very life-affirming film allows the audience to fully relate to a, for the ordinary person, great drama", the jury said about Schorr's movie, at the 10-day festival that ended late Sunday.

American film director David Lynch, of the cult TV series "Twin Peaks" f...More

"There Is No Scenario... Just as in Our Life"

Source | 2003/11/18 | Permalink

"Low Life".
This is the movie that Director Im Kwon-taek is working on now who has achieved a long-sought desire of the Korean filming industry by winning the Director's Award at the Cannes Film Festival last year with "Chihwaseon". The movie is his 99th work since his first movie, "Farewell Dooman-gang" in 1961. I met the director at the open set of "Low Life" in Puchon Fantastic Studios in Bucheon, Gyeonggi at 5 p.m. on November 14. This is his first interview about his films since he won the Director's Award.

- Music by "The Great Father of Korean Rock" Shin Jung-hyun

""Chunhyang", "Chihwaseon" and now "Low Life"... Even they (at the Cannes Film Festival) will get surprised, too. I wonder how they will react".

The movie "Low Life" involves a lifetime story of a scamp who lived throughout the late 1950s and early 1970s. Tae-woong who was closer to his own fist than to a book is the hero of this movie. He is indifferent to the historical turmoil of 4/19 and 5/16, but he involuntarily gets involved in the raging waves of the history. ...More