Wednesday, May 2, 2012

"Kim Hyun Joong to make a small-screen comeback through new drama, ‘City Conquest’" plus 19 more

"Kim Hyun Joong to make a small-screen comeback through new drama, ‘City Conquest’" plus 19 more


Kim Hyun Joong to make a small-screen comeback through new drama, ‘City Conquest’

Posted: 02 May 2012 08:39 AM PDT

After rumors in April, it seems Kim Hyun Joong will be officially making his return to the small screen.

The singer who has focused mostly on his album promotions after his drama ‘Playful Kiss‘ came to an end in 2010 has recently been confirmed for a role in ‘City Conquest‘.

‘City Conquest’ is a drama that’s been adapted from the original comic by author Shin Hyung Bin. This new project brings together humanism and action, and it tells the story of main character Baek Mir who grew up resentful towards his father who left his mother and himself. He takes revenge against the evils of society which drove his family into destruction.

Kim Hyun Joong will be playing the role of Baek Mir, a strong individual who experienced all sorts of difficulties growing up without parents, but a man who becomes infinitely weak when it comes to love.

A representative from his agency Key East remarked, “Kim Hyun Joong is readily preparing to show you a more developed side of himself, as there are many fans who have been awaiting his small-screen comeback. Please look forward to it.

In related news, Kim Hyun Joong will be holding his ‘Kim Hyun Joong Fan Meeting Tour 2012‘ in May, making stops in Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, and more.

Source & Image: OSEN

INFINITE’s new album to be titled ‘INFINITIZE’?

Posted: 02 May 2012 08:14 AM PDT

After revealing the release date of their comeback, INFINITE has now released the name of their new album.

On May 3rd (KST), INFINITE’s official website was updated with the words: ‘INFINITIZE‘. The assumption is that ‘INFINITIZE’ will be the album name and the word means to free from limitations of space, time, circumstance, to cause something to become INFINITE.

What do you think of the name?

Source & Image: INFINITE’s Official Website
Tip: spongegi & dee1987

AZIATIX reveals MV for “Alright”

Posted: 02 May 2012 08:00 AM PDT

“In the midst of destruction, natural disasters, corruption, and a collapsing economy, AZIATIX reminds us that there is always hope and light even in the darkest of days.”

AZIATIX's yearlong adventure has included groundbreaking successes in 2011, starting with their self-titled EP. The momentum grew with their follow-up ‘Nocturnal‘. By the time Flowsik, Eddie Shin, and Nicky Lee came up for air, they were Number One on the iTunes Japan R&B/Soul Charts, and #4 on the U.S. iTunes R&B/Soul Charts – a huge feat for a group who tackles multiple territories, touching fans in all corners of the world. It wasn't the easiest journey, but the ride was worth it. With a year of touring, gracing the cover of Korea’s Newsweek, along with winning the Best New Group Award at the Mnet Asian Music Awards and Best New Artist at the Blastro Music Video Awards, AZIATIX have finally exhaled and reflected, gearing for another great milestone.

Now, the trifecta of talent releases their third EP ‘Awakening‘. While much of AZIATIX's style and sound has been light-hearted and romantic, this EP brings to light more social issues. "While we were touring to promote our Nocturnal album, we met people affected by the struggle and hardships," the group explains. "From natural disasters to the global economic crisis, we were moved to go back into the studio and reflect and convey what we witnessed and experienced. Ultimately the album ended up being an album about hope."

The first single was originally titled "299.792.458" which is exactly what the single was eventually named, "Speed Of Light." The song acknowledges hardships and how to move past them, bringing a message of hope to whoever puts their ears on it. Their fan base spans the globe, and AZIATIX have heard so many stories from them, where a sense of confidence and well-being is vital. The trio hopes their music will inspire fans and comfort them, knowing that things will get better. "Every record on the album is about the struggles and challenges we face in life and what we can do to overcome them. While some songs are still pop, it’s not really about partying in the club, love, or loss in a typical sense. It’s much deeper," they explain. Sonically, the group is tinkering with faster bpms, challenging themselves with their sound and instrumentation, moving through multiple genres seamlessly.

This EP is above all, a call to action. "If Nocturnal was an album that captured the essence of the night – celebrating the moments, conveying carpe noctem – Awakening is the morning after," AZIATIX states, "Where light shines in and they see the world and life as it is, but appreciating and ultimately celebrating life and the journey as a whole, encouraging all to carpe diem."

Check out the music video to their latest single “Alright” below and you can support them by purchasing the music.

Awakening - EP - AZIATIX

f(x)’s Amber posts a cute childhood photo of member Krystal

Posted: 02 May 2012 07:30 AM PDT

On May 1st, f(x)'s tomboy Amber, updated her me2day with a treat for fans. She posted an endearing photograph of fellow member Krystal as a toddler with the message, “Soojung ah~ You are so cute” (Krystal’s full Korean name is Jung Soojung).

In the picture, little Krystal candidly has her arms up against the seat of the car while making the most adorable pout with her lips and what seems to be a wink with her right eye.

Netizens, in love with the newly shared picture, left comments like, “Wow~ she’s so cute. She looks exactly the same,” “It looks like she’s winking,” and “Toddler Krystal looks really loveable.” Another netizen made a reference to Krystal’s popular aegyo expression from the recently completed sitcom series ‘High Kick 3‘ by commenting, “Bbooing Bbooing.

Source + Image: Amber’s me2day

SHINee’s ‘Sherlock’ is a chart topper in Taiwan

Posted: 02 May 2012 06:58 AM PDT

SHINee‘s latest comeback has become a hit in Taiwan as well!

According to information revealed by SM Entertainment on May 2nd, SHINee’s new mini-album, ‘Sherlock‘, has topped Taiwan’s biggest album sales chart G-Music. The album climbed its ’Asia Chart’ for the week of April 20th through the 26th.

On the combined chart, the boys ranked third, just after Show Luo and an OST for the popular drama, ‘Absolute Boyfriend‘.

Other charts the boys ranked on include FIVE Music‘s Korea/Japan chart where they topped for the week of April 20th through the 26th, as well as Kuangnan‘s Korea/Japan chart for the same week.

In addition, the group ranked first on Taiwan’s biggest radio chart, ‘HIT FM Asia Music Chart‘, on April 29th.

SHINee is currently on their Japanese arena tour, with a stop in Nagoya from May 3rd through the 5th. The boys will be releasing the Japanese version of ‘Sherlock’ on the 16th.

Source + Photos: Star News

Baek Ji Young and 2PM’s Taecyeon on the set of her new MV

Posted: 02 May 2012 06:29 AM PDT

Baek Ji Young and 2PM Taecyeon‘s recent snapshot has been receiving a lot of attention.

During Baek Ji Young’s MV shoot for her new mini-album on the 1st, Taecyeon arrived on set to show his support and took a photo with the singer. Fans also noticed the 2PM member’s new longer hairstyle.

The two previously collaborated in August 2009 for the hit song “My Ear′s Candy” on Baek Ji Young's mini album, ‘EGO‘. Although it has been two years since their duet, the song’s popularity has still not faded as there are countless parodies of it being done to this day. There’s talk that Taecyeon will be collaborating with Baek Ji Young in one way or another once again.

Fans commented, “What’s your concept this time,“ “Beast idol Taecyeon turned into a gentle guy,” “You guys look good together,” and "I'm really looking forward to this.”

Baek Ji Young's new mini-album will be released on May 17. This will be the first time in three years the singer will return with an upbeat dance title track.

Source +Image: Star News via Nate, WS Entertainment’s Twitter
Tip: BJYisthebest

Japanese rock band L’Arc-en-Ciel hopes Girls’ Generation will visit their concert

Posted: 02 May 2012 05:57 AM PDT

Japanese rock band L’Arc-en-Ciel recently mentioned Girls’ Generation during a promotional interview for their upcoming Korean concert.

For those unfamiliar with the band, L’Arc-en-Ciel debuted in 1991 and has been reaching new heights of popularity every day for the past 20 years. They’ve sold over 30 million albums to date, and have a record of selling out the Tokyo Dome in two minutes flat.

When asked to name something that they were most anticipating, the members stated, “We’re kind of looking forward to Korean artists visiting the concert.” Shyly, they added, “Like maybe Girls’ Generation.”

Netizens commented, “So L’Arc-en-Ciel is a fan of Girls’ Generation as well,” and “It’d be daebak if they really went”!

L’Arc-en-Ciel’s concert will be held at the Jamsil Gymnasium on the night of May 5th.

Source + Photos: TV Daily via Nate

Star News interviews Pledis CEO, Han Sung Soo

Posted: 02 May 2012 05:29 AM PDT

Although most of the discussion surrounding the international presence of K-Pop centers around the “Big Three” entertainment agencies – SM, YG, and JYP Entertainment – there are numerous smaller, but just as potent, agencies working to bring the Hallyu Wave to even farther shores.

One of those companies is Pledis Entertainment. With acts such as Son Dam Bi, After School, NU’EST, and Orange Caramel under its belt, the firm is a force to be reckoned with.

The CEO of Pledis Entertainment is Han Sung Soo, who jumped into the entertainment industry fray in his 30s when he was a ballerino, eventually becoming a manager for SM Entertainment and, finally, the creator of his own entertainment firm. Star News recently sat down with the man to talk about his plans for the future and his current strategies.

—-

  • Why did you decide to transform into a manager from a ballerino?

I began to feel that ballet wasn’t going to be the rest of my career. I was envious of the process of creating creative content, and I thought that with my passion, I would do well in creating art for the masses. Since I had studied pure art, I always had respect for creativity, and after some pondering, I decided to go into the entertainment world. I sent resumes to Daesung Entertainment (now known as DSP Entertainment) and SM Entertainment, but they never contacted me.

  • You started working as a manager under SM Entertainment.

At first, I didn’t know how hard the work would be, and I only tackled it because I wanted to seek out a challenge. I used to park my car in front of the SM building and become lost in thought. Over two months, I must have visited the building over 30 times. [Laughs] Then miraculously, I got through to President Lee Soo Man and told him outright, “I want to learn”. So that’s how I began working as a manager. Now that I think about it, I have no idea what possessed me to do that. It’s a bit late to say this, but I lied to an SM employee to find out his phone number. [Laughs]

  • You began at the relatively old age of 30 and created your own company in 10 years.

Working as a manager for BoA, I learned about the domestic and international entertainment process. Everything was an adventure, and I think I gained some unique experience watching it all from up close. Following that, with another company, I debuted a girl group in America called S Blush with Son Dam Bi and Kahi. This process was also a good foundation for today’s K-Pop activities.

  • How does it feel to look back upon 10 years of success?

In 2007, I took Kahi and Son Dam Bi to create Pledis. We had no building nor an office, but we had certainty. Rather than try to create a singer, I wanted to lay the foundation. So even though we didn’t have an office, we had a practice room. It’s the same now, but we did not spare any expense on trainees. Training is the most important phase. As I saw acts like Son Dam Bi, After School, and NU’EST mature and grow, I feel pride as well as responsibility.

  • Is there a special Pledis know-how on how to manage your artists?

Pledis places importance on communication and training. We have an institutionalized mentor system, so we regularly have counseling and communication sessions, and we talk often with our artists. We also place focus on performance, so I personally oversee their practice. Our amount of training is on the larger side, for a distinguished performance.

  • Do you have a unique strategy for the K-Pop market?

We manage our trainees through a training system that connected with various countries overseas. For those living overseas, they have their definite color and style. We have training systems in Los Angeles, Shanghai, and other cities where instructors teach acting and performance. We share opinions through a monitor connection with Seoul. Our training system that participates directly with instructors in the field is the foundational force behind creating a K-Pop star.

  • How will you work with After School’s graduation and admission concept?

There have already been several groups in Brazil and Japan where the members are switched out constantly. If we were to debate the creation of the admission/graduation concept, it would be Europe. When we reach a certain point, there is still a fear over the word ‘graduation’ when it comes to leaving the team. Of course, if a fan’s favorite member graduates, there will be negative thoughts about never getting to see that member again. Thinking long-term, it is a way to enliven the members’ unique traits and to allow them to exist for a long time in many different forms. Former members Yoo So Young and Bekah left for acting and education, and we’re thinking about the next graduate. If only to wash away the fans’ concerns, the graduates will leave a good precedent before they leave the team. To do that, I feel we need to put in greater effort.

  • Many fans worry about the graduation system.

It is definitely a strange way of operation. But graduation and admission has been a part of After School since their debut, and the team will move forward based on that fact. It’s not to simply add members, and any graduation and admission is decided upon after a long discussion. Even if they’re celebrities, a company cannot control their wishes and they shouldn’t need to. In the case of Bekah, we gave her several months to think about it, but she decided to graduate.

  • What are the strong points that Pledis’ artists possess in the K-Pop market?

First of all, we want to turn After School into a group that gives truly amazing performances rather than simply sing and dance. Following our drum performance, we created a tap dance. To enliven their long-term relevance and unique merit, we spun off Orange Caramel, and I think we earned a new market by grouping three members with similar traits together. For NU’EST, we’d like for them to act as the messenger for those in their ‘teens.

  • Orange Caramel is scheduled to begin Japanese activities this summer.

There hasn’t been a K-Pop group so far with such vivid costumes, huge ribbons, and sweet performance, so the Japanese response has been hot. We will show off Orange Caramel’s unique ‘candy culture’ themed melody and choreography. According to the response, their combination of traditional Korean liveliness and off-the-wall fashion is getting results.

  • What do you think is a unique positive trait to K-Pop?

Dancing and singing skills to rival those of any foreign pop group, and our streamlined music and performances. The reason why K-Pop is standing in the middle of Asia is not only because of addictive hook songs, but also because of our polished sound and composition. It’s important to always keep learning by communicating with foreign countries.

—-

With two to three teams making their debuts this year, Pledis is beginning to take shape. “K-Pop is beginning to become Asian pop,” Han said. “It’s not an exaggeration to say that it is a cultural revolution tying together all of Asia. Expanding to more foreign countries is good, but I want to responsibly handle our Japanese activities and proceed step-by-step.”

Source: Star News via Nate

KARA’s Jiyoung wears a ‘meat dress’?

Posted: 02 May 2012 04:55 AM PDT

KARA Jiyoung‘s “meat dress” has recently become a hot topic.

On April 20th, TokyoTV‘s new drama ‘Rainbow Rose‘ released a still of Jiyoung wearing a floral pattern dress that looked a little too close to a cut of raw marbled meat. The maknae of KARA is shown wearing the unique dress with various cups and plates attached.

This concept is receiving further interest for following the meat dress that Lady Gaga has worn in the past.

Fans commented, “This is definitely Lady Gaga’s fashion,” “What could the concept have been for her to wear such a dress?” and “The dress suits her well.”

KARA’s Jiyoung is currently acting in ‘Rainbow Rose’ as Han Yoo Ri, a college student majoring in fashion design.

Source + Image: Star News via Nate

Details on 2PM’s Japanese single “Beautiful”

Posted: 02 May 2012 04:21 AM PDT

2PM has released the track list for their 4th Japanese single “Beautiful“, which will be released this June 6th along with a B-side track composed by member Junho called “If You Are Here“.

A “Hi-5 event” for fans who buy the single will be held at Makuhari Messe International Exhibition Hall on June 16th.

Check out 2PM’s track list for “Beautiful” below:

1. Beautiful
2. If You Are Here
3. Beautiful (instrumental)
4. If You Are Here (instrumental)

Source: Sony
Tip: Paula

Girls’ Generation’s Tiffany explains why she doesn’t like being called by her Korean name

Posted: 02 May 2012 03:50 AM PDT

Girls' Generation's Tiffany, whose Korean name is Hwang Miyoung, confessed that she dislikes being called by her Korean name.

The singer made the confession on the latest episode of MBC‘s ’Joo Byung Jin's Talk Concert‘. The episode featured members of TVXQ, Super Junior, and Girls' Generation.

The show started off with a quick introduction from each of the members, starting first with TVXQ's Yunho. During Tiffany's introduction, Leeteuk suddenly asked her why she didn't like being called by her “real” name. Tiffany then answered that her friends would often “tease her because of her name,” and that they called her “Hwang Miyuk” (“miyuk” in Korean means seaweed), which caused the guests to laugh.

They went as far as making a rap song titled Hwang Miyuck,” continued Tiffany, "They would sing it every time they saw me!"

Other highlights from the episode include Eunhyunk's breaking of his long-running status as a non-drinker of 27 years, Changmin's choice of the “member he'd get along with the least” should he have debuted under Super Junior, and Seohyun's own ranking of the men of SM Entertainment from hottest to least hottest.

This episode of Joo Buyng Jin's Talk Concert will air on May 3rd.

Source & image: Naver News

Idol groups vote B2ST as the group with the best teamwork

Posted: 02 May 2012 03:15 AM PDT

B2ST has been chosen as the group with the “best teamwork” by other idol groups.

On MBC‘sWeekly Idol‘, idol group members voted for the group they believe has the best teamwork as well as the one that may even match Shinhwa‘s longevity one day. The six-member group Shinhwa has been together for 14 years, and currently holds the record for the longest standing idol group.

Label mate BtoB’s Changsub believes B2ST has the best teamwork because, “All six members always get along so well, and even when they are practicing, they are always supporting each other. The B2ST members also recently revealed that they share all income and debt equally.

Don’t miss this exciting episode of ‘Weekly Idol’ airing May 2nd.

Source + Image: Chosun via Naver

Sulli sketches in f(x) member Victoria in a recent selca

Posted: 02 May 2012 02:41 AM PDT

f(x)‘s Sulli humored her fans by drawing a “replica” of her fellow member Victoria.

On May 2nd, Sulli posted on her me2day, “There was an empty spot in the picture so I made a sketch, but doesn’t it look the same?” along with the above photo.

The revealed photo showed all the members of f(x) except Victoria posing for the camera. Amber and Sulli showed off their cute and chic charms while Krystal and Luna both held up peace signs.

Sulli’s sketch of Victoria, who was missing from the photo, made her fans laugh. Victoria’s signature big eyes were the focus of her drawing.

Followers commented, “Where did Victoria go? Where’s our Vic Umma,” “The picture is exactly like Victoria. It looks like a real person,” and “The big eyes are similar. Four flower beauties.”

Source+Picture: Sulli‘s me2day

Simon D with ‘Standby’ castmates ZE:A’s Siwan and Go Kyung Pyo

Posted: 02 May 2012 02:07 AM PDT

Supreme Team‘s Simon D recently shared a photo of him and his fellow cast members from MBC‘s ‘Standby‘, ZE:A‘s Siwan and Go Kyung Pyo.

Simon D shared on his Twitter, “MBC’s daily sitcom ‘Standby’ male cast members in their 20s are making a friendly pose.” Simon D is seen putting his arms around Siwan and Go Kyung Po while everyone is smiles at the camera.

Fans commented, “So handsome,” “This trio looks like fun,” and “It’s boss Simon.”

In ‘Standby’, Simon D plays the role of an aspiring rapper who works as a waiter.

Source + Image: Star News via Nate, Simon D’s Twitter

Jang Dong Hyuk snaps a photo with SISTAR

Posted: 02 May 2012 01:37 AM PDT

On May 1st, comedian Jang Dong Hyuk posted a photo he took with the girls of SISTAR on his me2day blog.

In the photo, the comedian and SISTAR members look adorable as they all throw a victory sign towards the camera. Jang Dong Hyuk wrote, “I must have saved the planet in a previous life. The girls of SISTAR are gorgeous.”

Netizens commented, “Standing in the middle of  beauties, I’m jealous,” “SISTAR looks even prettier with their big smiles,” and “I should have saved the planet in my previous life too.

Source + Photo: Jang Dong Hyuk’s me2day

MBLAQ’s Lee Joon admits he planned to become an ‘ulzzang’

Posted: 02 May 2012 01:09 AM PDT

MBLAQ‘s Lee Joon shared a few photos of himself that were taken during his younger years.

On the May 1st episode of SBS‘ ‘Strong Heart‘, Lee Joon remarked, “My life has unfolded according to my thorough planning.”

I purposely uploaded my photos onto a famous ‘ulzzang’ (best face) site, and I immediately earned an explosive response,” he said. “I became an ulzzang the very next day.”

Seeing the old photos of Lee Joon, the other guests on set remarked that he resembled singer Rain.

Though he appeared to be posing naturally, Lee Joon admitted that the photos were premeditated. “Truth is, I asked my friend who studied photography to expertly organize the background and the lightsWe even calculated the angle of my eyes and the shape of my lips,” causing everyone to laugh at his frank and silly confession.

Source & Image : TVReport via Nate

IU sketches a “racy peach”

Posted: 02 May 2012 12:41 AM PDT

IU shared a picture of an interesting peach she sketched.

On May 1st, IU tweeted, “Racy peach… Let’s try again with an innocent mind,” and revealed the drawing above.

It seems that the singer referred to the drawing of the peach as “racy“ because the bottom of the fruit is a bit reminiscent of a person’s bottom.

KBS announcer Jun Hyun Moo saw the picture and replied, “IU, you’re all grown up now, posting up pictures like this. As an uncle, I’m proud of you.

Followers also commented, “Naughty IU! Cute,” “Cute IU no matter what she does,” “The uncle fans are going wild,” and “It’s funny that Jun Hyun Moo is proud of her.

Source+Picture: IU’s Twitter

Jung Hyung Don performs “Sherlock” dance for SHINee on ‘Weekly Idol’

Posted: 02 May 2012 12:15 AM PDT

Comedian Jung Hyung Don issued a challenge to SHINee.

On the May 2nd broadcast of MBC Every1‘s ‘Weekly Idol‘, SHINee will appear as guests. Jung Hyung Don performed the “Sherlock” dance, which was choreographed by Tony Testa, for the group during the program’s recording.

Jung Hyung Don stated, “I heard that this was the most expensive choreography in the history of SM Entertainment,” to which SHINee responded, “The choreographer is a lot better than most others.

Key added, “‘Sherlock’ is a song about a detective, and the choreography tells such a story as well,” revealing the multiple layers behind the dance. They also revealed the main point of the dance, which they’ve been wanting to share with their fans. After learning the secrets of the “Sherlock” dance, Jung Hyung Don decided to impress SHINee with his dancing prowess.

Jun Hyun Moo previously made his version of the dance called “Moo Sherlock“, and now Jung Hyung Don has received his own title of “Don Sherlock“.

During the show, the SHINee members also spoke and joked about their drinking habits. This episode of ‘Weekly Idol’ featuring SHINee will air on May 2nd.

Source: Sports Chosun via Nate News

Lee Hyori sets record as the longest-running soju model

Posted: 01 May 2012 11:52 PM PDT

Top star Lee Hyori has set the record as the longest-running soju model.

According to Lotte Liquor, Lee Hyori has renewed her contract as an endorsement model for soju brand Cheoeum Cheoreom (like the first time) on May 2nd. This would make it her 9th contract with Cheoeum Cheoreom since she first signed with the brand in November 2007, giving her the title of the longest-running soju model.

A representative from Lotte Liquors stated, “Lee Hyori’s sexy and flashy image as a singer and her down-to-earth image from variety shows, which appeal to people young and old as well as males and females, have helped to steadily increase the popularity and brand recognition of Cheoeum Cheoreom, which is why we renewed the contract with her.”

A source from the manufacturer itself revealed, “Lee Hyori’s ‘Shake It Campaign‘ gave birth to drinks such as ‘The Storm’ and ‘Hyori drink’. Cheoeum Cheoreom and Lee Hyori’s compatibility is the best,” praising Lee Hyori’s success as a spokeswoman.

In addition to Lee Hyori, gagmen Kim Joon Hyun, Kim Won Hyo, and others from KBS2‘s ‘Gag Concert‘ have also renewed their contracts. They’ll be appearing in the Cheoeum Cheoreom ads with Lee Hyori.

Source + Image: Sports Seoul via Naver

J.Y. Park was suspected of drug use?

Posted: 01 May 2012 11:30 PM PDT

Singer and producer J.Y. Park made an appearance on the April 30th broadcast of SBS‘s ‘Healing Camp‘ where he spoke up about being suspected of using drugs.

J.Y. Park commented, “When I do music, I reach the heights of pleasure. When I sing and dance, I go a little crazy, and I look like I am not myself so I have been tested for drugs numerous times.”

He continued, “One time I went to the studio, and my mother was there. She asked me with tears in her eyes if I took drugs. During that time, I had severe allergies so I had a syringe with some salt water in it, which I used for my nostrils. My mother found the syringe next to the sink and was shocked,” detailing the humorous misunderstanding.

J.Y. Park left viewers with proof of his passion for the industry and love of music, stating, “I really love music. When I am working on music or performing, I do feel I go crazy.

Source: Chosun Ilbo via Nate News