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 Korean Star

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PostSubject: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:03 pm




Prosecution not to book G-Dragon



The prosecution suspended its investigation of obscenity charges against pop singer G-Dragon on Tuesday.

The prosecution said it decided to suspend its plan to indict the singer, who had been accused of simulating sex on stage with a female dancer during a December concert.

Criticism from netizens was especially severe because the audience was made up mostly of pre-teen students.

After the show, the Ministry for Health, Welfare and Family Affairs filed a complaint against the singer and his management agency to the prosecution for obscenity.

The prosecution said it had made its decision because the singer had only acted in accordance with the management agency's plans, and that the controversial scene made up just two minutes of the two-hour performance.

By Ryu Seung-yoon (syryu@heraldm.com)


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:08 pm



New faces to widen the scope of Hallyu dramas

How many outside Korea are aware that Lee Charm, the first naturalized Korean citizen from Germany used to be a TV celebrity, who at one time appeared in Korean TV dramas? Last year he was named the president of the Korean Tourism Organization, becoming the first naturalized citizen to be named to a high government post.

Hallyu drama is fast catering to changing trends. As the number of expats in Korea exceeded one million years ago, new faces are making a splash in Hallyu dramas these days. These new faces are either Koreans from overseas, half-Koreans or expats eager to take their chance to be a star in Asia.


Daniel Henney (left) and the movie he starred in 2007 "My Father"

One of the earliest signs of the big potential for actors from overseas was in the drama “My Lovely Sam-soon” (2005). At the time Daniel Henney, a U.S. model whose mother is ethnically Korean starred as a supportive friend of a girl he loves. Henney, with his good looks and the charming role he played, became an instant talk in Korea, together with the show.

Henney, learning his way around Korea as well as the language, appeared in other TV dramas like Spring Waltz and many TV commercials. With his improved Korean he later landed main roles in local movies like “Seducing Mr. Perfect” and “My Father.” This career paved his way to Hollywood, helping him star in a role as Agent Zero in the film “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” and as Dr. David Lee in CBS drama “Three Rivers.”


Tamna the Island (2009)

Following the successful example of Henney, more overseas actors began to make appearances in local television shows. Julien Kang, a French-Canadian actor whose father is Korean, started out with small roles in dramas like “A Star's Lover” (2008) and “Dream” (2009). He is currently making his name better known through a sitcom called “High Kick Straight to the Roof,” playing a tutor from overseas.

It's not just the dramas. The KBS weekly talk show “Beauties Talk,” in which women from different nations express their thoughts on Korean culture and compare it to their own, has been one of the great attractions on Tuesday evenings since it premiered in 2006.

MBC's Sunday morning show “Surprise” features male and female actors recreating strange events and mysterious happenings from around the world and has recorded steady ratings since it first began in 2002. It has also become quite common for other variety shows to have overseas actors – though they have to speak Korean to some degree – at least as guest stars.

The same can be said for historical dramas, where usually western actors simply had no role to play due to the historical background. With the latest trend to go beyond stories of the Joseon era (1392-1910), which was a hermit kingdom for five centuries, foreign actors are at least showing up on camera as traders and merchants from Persia, Rome and other countries. “Queen Seondeok,” a drama that deals with stories of the Silla Kingdom (57 B.C. – A.D. 935) has plenty of those merchants appearing in the show.

The most dramatic experimentation took place with the 20-episode mini-series “Tamna the Island” (2009) when the producer cast a foreigner as the main character. Pierre Deporte (adopted Korean name: Hwang Chan-bin), who is French but can speak Korean thanks to his Korean stepmother, starred as an English castaway on Korea's Jeju-do Island in the 17th century (Tamna is the old name for Jeju-do). Although it didn't rate as well as expected, it spawned many enthusiastic followers that still laud the new ideas and bold experiments.


Assorted Jems (2010) and Michael Blunck (right)

In the recent weekend drama “Assorted Gems” (2010) Michael Blunck starred in the leading role as a U.S. student who wishes to be a monk in Korea. Unlike a few other half-Korean or foreign actors who had to go the extra length to catch up with the language, Blunck had no trouble showing off his fluent Korean throughout the show. He has lived in Korea for 10 years and though he never acted before, his comfortable screen presence has added to the popularity of the show.

The growing presence of Korean-American actors taking large roles in major TV dramas is most evident in the ongoing medical drama “Jejoongwon” which began to air in mid-January this year. The drama, named after Korea's first modern hospital established in 1885, features many medical missionaries who have newly arrived in Joseon in the late 19th century. . The story deals with episodes stemming from when old Korean culture met the new culture from the West, especially in the field of medicine. The roles of medical missionaries like Horace Newton Allen (1858-1932) and John W. Heron (1856-1890) are played by Sean Richard and Ricky Lee Neely, respectively, both from the United States and half ethnically Korean.

Sean Richard, whose mother is Korean, majored in acting and built his career through stage performances in New York. “I wish to break down the prejudice that overseas actors have to be simply handsome and tall,” Richard said in an interview. He won the role of Allen out of 100 actors who auditioned.

He admitted it wasn't speaking Korean but acting in Korean that proved to be more difficult then he thought. However, he got used to late night acting. In Korea one of the difficulties of acting includes long hours of waiting and waiting, quite often running out of time, chased by pressing schedules – something that many foreign actors have adjusting to.


Jejoongwon (2010): In the middle is Sean Richard and in right, Catherine Baillie

“I work till late then have soju with the staff. That's the fun of Korean TV production I guess,” said Richard. “There's a sense of companionship in the Korean workplace, the gathering you have after the hard work instead of just heading home separately. I think I like that.”

Ricky Lee Neely is a model and has appeared in smaller roles in other Korean dramas like “On Air” and variety shows. He gained attention by marrying musical actress Ryu Seung-joo last year.

“It's good to see that I'm not alone in trying to build an acting career in Korea,” said Neely in his interview and expressed his wish, too, for local viewers to see him beyond just good looks.

More overseas actors are expected to show up in this particular drama based on the historical background. Catherine Baillie from the KBS Variety show “Beauties Talk” is playing female doctor Lilias Horton (1851-1921), meaning that Horton's fiancé and future husband Horace Grant Underwood (1859-1916), one of the first Presbyterian missionaries to Korea, and Oliver R. Avison (1860-1921), another medical missionary to Jejoongwon, are soon to appear.

By Kim Hee-sung
Korea.net Staff Writer


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:14 pm



Feisty Grandmas Pull Off Bandit Acts


From left, veteran actresses Kim Su-mi, Na Mun-hee and Kim Hye-ok star in 밳ukhyeolpo Gangdodan?(Pistol Bandit Band) as a trio of feisty bank-robbing grandmas. The famiy comedy will open in theaters March 18./Courtesy of Lotte Entertainment

By Lee Hyo-won
Staff Reporter

Cinema has seen its fair share of uncanny elderly heroines, from Miss Daisy (not) behind the driving wheel to the cross-dressing Mrs. Doubtfire, but feisty Korean grannies turning into larger-than-life bank robbers in the whim of a late-life crisis, is a first.

"Yukhyeolpo Gangdodan" (Pistol Bandit Band) is like a hearty bowl of "makgeolli." It's brewed from vintage humor like the traditional rice wine -- the physical farce, crude jokes and other comic formulas may not be strikingly novel but they are just the stuff that make local audiences drunk with laughter.

But the family comedy is also determined to inspire tears with a dose of heartfelt drama, and Charlie Chaplin's famous saying comes to mind -- "Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up but a comedy in long-shot."

Basically, three senior citizens decide to rob a bank, or more precisely, reclaim what they believe is rightfully theirs.

The elderly widows have worked hard for the past eight years to save up 8.37 million won -- the exact cost of three VIP tour packages to Hawaii. Strolling along the sandy beaches is for them more than a pleasant getaway; it's the fulfillment of a lifelong dream, a crowning jewel moment of retirement.

Each grandmother has her own dire need for a vacation. Soju-chugging Jeong-ja (veteran actress Na Mun-hee) has led a rough life, having suffered the pain of imprisonment and giving up her son for adoption. The foul-mouthed Yeong-heui (Kim Su-mi, who is enjoying a second renaissance in her career) has just bid farewell to her philandering husband and feels liberated from heartbreak. The lady-like Sin-ja (Kim Hye-ok, who is a familiar maternal figure through TV soaps) has led a relatively comfortable life but has had her share of distress, having had to tolerate her late husband's drinking problems and now is dealing with an incompetent son that swindles her money.

The women have diligently scraped up bills and coins over the years, sometimes resorting to ways that are not strictly "legal" for extra cash. They proudly head to the bank to wire the money but alas, they lose it to bank robbers.

When the bank states that they cannot assume responsibility for the lost money, they set off to track down the bandits themselves -- and persistence, combined with wisdom that comes with age, results in a very terrified fugitive, Jun-seok (funnyman Im Chang-jung).

When it turns out that Jun-seok, having been betrayed by his gang, is penniless, the notorious trio coerces him into training them in the art of bank robbery. Will the grandmas, geared up with a real pistol and floral print masks, be able to go to Hawaii?

An Achilles' heel in Korean cinema has long been the tendency of films to vacillate rather incoherently and erratically between many different genres.

One can argue that life is often not so black and white, but there is however a respectable distinction between a messy potpourri of genres and a thought-provoking gray zone.

The movie is fortunately the latter of the two, and it tickles you with laughter but also pulls at the heartstrings. Writer-director Kang Hyo-jin, who made his feature directorial debut with "Punch Lady" (which was unfortunately an ugly potpourri), shows more promise with his new work. Those wanting pure lighthearted entertainment however might be weighed down by the more somber moments.

In theaters March. 18. Distributed by Lotte Entertainment

hyowlee@koreatimes.co.kr


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:16 pm




Kim Jong-il 'Has 3 Years to Live'

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has only three years to live based on all medical information compiled so far, Assistant U.S. Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Kurt Campbell told South Korean officials. Campbell made the comments in a closed-door meeting during his trip to South Korea last month, sources said.

Campbell invited three North Korean defectors, Liberty Forward Party lawmaker Park Sun-young, Democratic Party leader Jang Sang and Daily NK publisher Han Ki-hong to the U.S. embassy last month to discuss the political situation in North Korea and the prospects of dynastic succession there. U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Kathleen Stephens was also present.

Campbell asked participants how long they thought the North Korean leader has to live. One forecast five years, while another predicted less than that. Campbell added his own prediction of less than five years, saying that based on all medical information available it may be three years.

Experts speculate that these forecasts are behind Washington's proposal to hold more joint military exercises with South Korea to prepare for an emergency in North Korea. Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff made the proposal in a meeting with South Korean brass in October of last year, while Walter Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces in South Korea, reportedly made the same proposal early this year.

Combined Forces Command, comprised of U.S. and South Korean military officials, have prepared an operational plan for an emergency in North Korea, including Kim's sudden death. No specific exercises have yet been held, but a weapons-of-mass-destruction crack team is taking part in the current "Key Resolve" joint military exercise.

A senior South Korean government official said North Korea is "rushing to hand over all authority" to Kim's son and heir apparent Kim Jong-un within the next three years.

Photographs of the leader taken over the past year since his stroke show the color of his hands has darkened, while his fingernails are unusually white, suggesting that he may be suffering from kidney problems.

Campbell said the handover of power would be "totally different" than the time when Kim Jong-il took over from his father. Kim spent a decade under his father's wing learning the ropes, while Jong-un, who is only 26, has had no such training.

One of the participants at the meeting said U.S. agents gathered information about Jong-un's personality and intellectual capacity by interviewing teachers at the Swiss international school he had attended. Participants predicted a smooth transfer of power from father to son, saying major uncertainties await the North anywhere between two to five years after the handover.

A participant said North Korea could be forced to change if the pent-up frustrations of the public are tapped into. Campbell is said to have summed up the meeting by concluding that the Kim Jong-il regime would not last long and that the rapid transfer of power to the young Jong-un poses major concerns.

englishnews@chosun.com / Mar. 17, 2010 11:39 KST


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:24 pm



2PM’s latest Hanami CF


Though their leader has seemingly moved on, 2PM reunited as seven members once more for a new CF for Thailand’s popular snack Hanami. As many of you can guess, this CF was obviously recorded prior to the announcement of Jaebeom’s departure from the group.

We can see the boys together again, showing off nothing but laughs and smiles as they play a quick game of hot potato with a bag of Hanami snacks around the pool. Check out the feel good CF below!



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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:30 pm



Korea Earthenware Pots

People visiting Korea’s countryside might be surprised to discover rows upon rows of large and small, brown earthenware pots placed on a special platform. Spices and seasonings used to make Korean food are pickled and preserved in these pots, which include hangari 항아리and onggi 옹기(pots typically smaller than hangari)


One factor that helps preserve the food and ingredients contained withing is that the pots, despite the fluctuating temperatures of the seasons, tend to retain a constant temperature on the inside.


This allows for the flavor of the seasonings, sauces and pickled foods to be retained for several years. While Korean housewives may add the devotion needed to make a dish complete, it would not be a stretch to say that these pots give birth to the very aromas and flavors found on Korean tables.

Traditional soy sauce pots in Korea are usually very wide in the middle. The wider the pot is, the better it will retain the proper temperature inside the pot.

Korean chili paste (Gochujang 고추장), is made annually and preserved in medium sized pots. The medium sized pots are placed in the front row or in the corner for convenient access.

The taste of Korean soybean paste (Doenjang 된장) is enhanced by sunlight. In addition, sunlight also prevents doenjang from molding. Therefore, Koreans typically open the lid of the pots on sunny days.


Pot Arrangements and Functions

Korean earthenware pots are typically lined up (with larger pots placed behind smaller ones for convenience) in two or three rows in well ventilated areas with plenty of sunlight. This allows air and moisture to slowly seep through the pots’ walls, which enhances the flavor of the food that is contained within.

Over time, these pots have been known to help filter away toxins that are hazardous to humans. Having foods ferment inside pots for a long time ensures that the pot will retain the fresh quality of the food.

Source From: Korea Tourism Organization


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Wed Mar 17, 2010 12:48 pm



f(x) Released New Song "Thrill Love" !


SM's newest girl group f(x) is back in the kpop scene with the original soundtrack (OST) titled "Thrill Love" for the upcoming "shopperama" (shopping + drama = shopperama) "로미오♥️줄리엣" (translated to Romeo♥️Juliet)! This is the title that I see on the videos that have been uploaded to YouTube! Title and details of the dramas will be out... soon! Anyways, take a look below at what f(x) has to blow your minds away with!~


It's only the beginning of the week but it's been an exciting one so far in the kpop world huh?! Let's see what the end of the week has for us fans all over the world! ~Tick tock tick tick tock!~

Like always... Amber's rapping is so 짱! And of course all of the girls' vocals too!~ <3

Tipped off by the wonderful world of Twitter =3

P.S. Don't forget to check out f(x)'s international fan forum Aff(x)tion!!!


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:57 am


Korea’s Top 20 Most Wanted Celebrity Boyfriends [NEWS]


A poll was surveyed by kpop fans to decide who was Korea’s Top 20 Most Wanted Celebrity Boyfriends. All members of Big Bang have made the list.

Check out the


A poll was surveyed by kpop fans to decide who was Korea’s Top 20 Most Wanted Celebrity Boyfriends. All members of Big Bang have made the list.

Check out the boys' standing under the cut.

1. G-Dragon Bigbang (896 votes)
2. Jang Geun Sok and Lee Minho (860 votes)
3. Donghae SJ (823 votes)
4. Nichkhun 2PM (756 votes)
5. T.O.P Bigbang (718 votes)
6. Minho SHINee (624 votes)
7. Daesung Bigbang (543 votes)
8. Hongki FT Island (517 votes)
9. Yunho TVXQ (456 votes)
10. Yonghwa CN Blue (319 votes)
11. Jae Joong TVXQ (314 votes)
12. Taemin SHINee (298 votes)
13. Hyun Joong SS501 (295 votes)
14. Seungri Bigbang (291 votes)
15. Thunder MBLAQ (288 votes)
16. Heechul SJ (285 votes)
17. Taeyang Bigbang (279 votes)
18. Taecyeon 2PM (264 votes)
19. Leeteuk SJ (256 votes)
20. Jonghoon FT Island (245 votes)

Source: ☆emily @ sfi
via ibigbang


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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Thu Mar 18, 2010 12:03 pm

wow naman jang geun seok lee min ho..hongki.jae joon at min ho shinee pasok dyan..bakit walang kim bum?
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PostSubject: Re: Korean Star   Thu Apr 01, 2010 1:54 pm

goodmwnin everyone
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