Two stars of “Winter Sonata,” Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo, will be in Japan together this fall. The first-generation hallyu stars will be in the Tokyo Dome to promote “Winter Sonata – Another Story,” a 26-part animation show dubbed with their voices. This is the first time that Bae and Choi will participate in the same event since their drama was broadcast in 2002.
On the following day Bae will also hold a promotional event for his book tentatively titled “The Beauty of Korea.” His representative said that as many as 90 thousand Japanese fans are expected to come to the Tokyo Dome to see Bae over the two-day event. Also the events will be telecast live via satellite feed to local theaters, so those who will not be able to attend the Tokyo Dome events can still see Bae on screen.
Korean Wave star Bae Yong-jun has been named honorary curator of Iwayama Lacquer Art Museum in Japan. The museum is operated by Korean lacquer artist Jun Yong-bok, who has gained worldwide recognition, and is the largest of its kind in the world.
Bae’s agency, BOF, says the actor is currently writing a book on Korean culture and that he visited Japan secretly in February to learn lacquer art from Master Jun. “Bae Yong-jun learned the entire lacquer painting process firsthand, and as the honorary curator of the museum is determined to publicize lacquer art and hone his skills as well as bring lacquer art closer to the public,” said the agency.
Bae is currently voice-acting in the anime version of the TV drama “Winter Sonata” along with actress Choi Ji-woo, and will publish a book later this year.
Choi Ji-woo is flying solo, leaving her management behind to establish her own company.
The glam (and melodrama) queen has ended her contract with Olive Nine, and even before its expiration (on March 1), Choi been approached with many management offers from other large companies. Ultimately, Choi decided to assert her independence and is busily working to set up her own company in hopes to be ready by early April — hiring staff, renting an office.
(The timing seems ill-planned — she knew her contract was ending, and only now starts setting up an office? I smell fishiness… or maybe I’ve seen too many dramas. This one seems right out of her latest, A Star’s Lover.)
A representative from Olive Nine says that despite Choi leaving the company (they’ve ended the contract “cleanly, and promised to keep on good terms”), they will continue to have a relationship of “strategic cooperation.” For instance, she is still conferring with them about a few projects in development.
Other stars who have gone independent include Choi’s Winter Sonata co-stars Bae Yong-joon and Park Yong-ha, as well as her Everybody Has Secrets co-star Lee Byung-heon. (Lee Byung-heon’s BH Entertainment reps Han Chae-young; Rain’s J Tune reps Lee Da-hae and Yeon Jung-hoon; Yonsama’s BOF reps Choi Kang-hee and So Ji-sub, although the latter is ending his contract in April.)
Via Hankook Ilbo
The Korean drama Winter Sonata, which helped spur the popularity of Korean pop culture in Asia, the phenomenon known as Hallyu, will be made into a movie, along with another hit drama, Autumn in My Heart.Korean production company Culture Cap Media, which currently holds film rights to the hit TV drama, said it sealed a deal with investment management company Kara & Rich Holdings Korea and Japanese film development and finance company Entertainment Farm to produce a film based on mega hit TV drama series Winter Sonata.
Culture Cap Media will handle the production process, while Entertainment Farm will be involved as an investor.
The casting for leading roles has not been decided, but Culture Cap Media says the two stars of Winter Sonata, Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo, will not be participating in the movie adaptation and new faces will be chosen to add a fresh new feel to the film.
After production is complete, the involved companies will start producing Autumn in My Heart as well.
Winter Sonata and Autumn in my heart have drawn a large audience in East Asian countries, including Japan.
Song Seung-heon and Song Hye-gyo, who played the leading roles in Autumn in My Heart, and Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo, the two stars of Winter Sonata, have also been very popular across Asia.