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2 years old!

Happy Birthday to my blog!! Today you turn two years old!

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This week has been great for my blog! On Sunday I received my highest views ever on my blog, thanks to my blog post about the Jay Park concert. I received over 200 views from Korea alone and about 500 views all together in one day! And now it is my blogs birthday!

Thanks to the success of my Jay Park concert review, I am more determined to write more. Soooo, although I am not a K-Pop fan, I will be going to more K-Pop, K-Indie and K-HipHop shows. There are only a few shows in the UK, but the number of K-Pop concerts are increasing here, and I hope that K-Indie would become more popular or at the least, just have a few shows in London.

As today is my blogs birthday, I decided to read my first post and reflect on how much my blog has changed and grown.

Of course, visitors to the site have grown, but I believe my blog has kind of started to fit in to a target audience. I have always had an interest in Asian culture, but since I came back from Korea, it has been the main focus of my writing.

Having said that, my blog is still random and although I posting more about Korean related stuff, I will always have the random posts about other things.

I hope that my blog will become more successful in the future, and I think that will be more possible when I am in Korea. My goal is to receive more subscribers! Although I do get a lot of hits on here, I don’t have many subscribers (but to those of you who have subscribed, I love you the most!). With an increase of subscribers I believe my blog would be more interactive because I do want to talk with my blogs visitors and I want to write what you want me to write about. So comment below already!!

Honestly, thank you all for reading my blog posts, If it wasn’t for you guys, I wouldn’t be so motivated to actually publish my blog posts. I hope this next year will be better than my last two and I hope my blog becomes more interesting for you.

Again, Happy 2nd birthday blog!!!

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Happy Birthday Mummy!

Today is the birthday of the greatest woman in my life.

You have provided me with everything I ever wanted. You’ve stayed strong through the hardest times. Even though this year has been tough, you kept your head up high and focused on getting better for Dalia & I.

You are the greatest woman in the world & I hope to be half as amazing as you. My inspiration.

Love you mummy xx

Posted in Korea, Portfolio, Reviews, Uncategorized

Hollywood Films, Korean Actors?

This post does not mean to offend or upset anyone who is reading. This post is solely my opinion.

koreanwave

With the growing success of the Korean Wave, Korean artists such as Psy and BigBang are gaining more coverage and popularity in Western countries. But during my research in to my dissertation, I realised that the Korean Wave has been around before most of our favourite K-Pop groups and artists. The Korean Wave initially started with Korean Cinema.

Korean films gained popularity in Western countries in the early 2000’s. This lead to the rise in Korean actors wanting to be casts for Hollywood Movies. The increase in interest in Korean films made it possible for Korean actors to succeed in getting roles in Hollywood films. However, are they gaining recognition as being Korean?

sung kang

Last week I watched Fast & Furious 6. at the end of the film, it occurred to me that Sung Kang (Han in the films) is Korean. To be exact he is American Korean but what made me think was, in Fast & Furious 6 he is in China and of course he was in Japan in Tokyo Drift, but his character has never been stated to be Korean. In Fast & Furious, he actually has two names, Han Lue & Han Seoul-Oh. Obviously the later is a Korean name, but as the film does not mention that he is Korean, many people believe his character is Japanese. This made me realise that many Korean actors are cast in American films, but the characters they are cast for are very rarely Korean.

Now I know this isn’t important but it cropped up in my research for my dissertation. My dissertation was about how the Korean Wave has influenced adopted Koreans to connect with Korean culture. As the topic is under researched and specific, I needed to conduct in-depth interviews with adopted Koreans. One person I interviewed mentioned Korean actors in American films and this was really important.

To prove my point, listed below are a few examples of Korean actors in Hollywood films, being cast as non-Korean characters.

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Sung Kang – The Fast & The Furious series – Korean name but thought to be Japanese or in The Fast & The Furious 6 – Chinese
Rain – Ninja Assassin – Japanese
Sung Kang again – Ninja Assassin – Japanese
Randall Duk Kim – Ninja Assassin – Japanese
Lee Byung Hun (eek) – G.I. Joe – Japanese
Jong Dong Gun – The Warrior’s Way – Character name Yang – used by American directors when they don’t want to define the origin of Asian characters.
Leonardo Nam – The Fast & The Furious – Tokyo Drift – Japanese
Rick Yune – The Fast & The Furious (2001) – Vietnamese
James Kyson – TV Series Heroes – Japanese
Ken Jeong – The Hangover – Chinese
Bae Doona – Cloud Atlas – portrayed as 3 different characters with 3 different  ethnicities – Korean, Mexican and White (or possibly Mixed Race White & Black)
And many more.

Although my last example of Cloud Atlas is a bit more confusing.

However, as previously mentioned this post is not intended to offend anyone . I am not saying that Korean actors should only play Korean characters in Movies and TV shows, I just hope that American movie and TV shows can start to acknowledge Korea more in their films. There are, of course, films and TV shows such as Lost (starring Daniel Dae Kim & Kim Yun Jin), The Walking Dead (Starring Steven Yeun) and Film Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay (John Cho as leading character Harold). But, during research for my dissertation, I spoke to adopted Koreans who, in their childhood and teen years, looked for Korean role models in Hollywood films and TV Shows. One adopted Korean I interviewed stated that he:

‘looked for Korean role models but whenever I saw an Asian guy in a movie, he tended to be Japanese or Chinese. I knew I was Korean so finding a role model was important for me to feel connected to my culture. When I grew up, I realised that Rain from Ninja Assassin was actually Korean, but his character was Japanese. I feel like the younger generation of adopted Koreans are probably doing the same thing I did but are having no luck. It’s strange how there are a lot of Korean actors in American films, but they aren’t playing Korean characters’.

But in the end, I am proud of all of the actors and actresses listed above and others who are breaking into Hollywood films. They are truly great actors and I wish them success in the rest of their careers. Hopefully with the growth of the Korean Wave, more Hollywood films and TV series will include Koreans as Koreans and acknowledge Korea more.

BACK ROW: ELIZABETH MITCHELL, DANIEL DAE KIM, DOMINIC MONAGHAN, JORGE GARCIA, MICHAEL EMERSON, HENRY IAN CUSICK, EMILIE DE RAVIN; FRONT ROW: YUNJIN KIM, MATTHEW FOX, JACK BENDER, CARLTON CUSE, DAMON LINDELOF, EVANGELINE LILLY, JOSH HOLLOWAY

Posted in Portfolio, Reviews, Uncategorized

A night with Passion. Pt. 2

Hello! It’s been a while! I’ve been too busy!! =[

However, with the stress of uni deadlines and work, I managed to go to see the awesome and super talented Jeremy Passion.

If you have not read The Empty Suitcase Project and A night with Passion, please read both of them!

As my ‘A night with Passion’ post mentioned, Jeremy Passion was in Europe doing a tour, ‘the little tour that could’. London was lucky enough to have Jeremy perform twice in one month!

The first show was amazing. I enjoyed myself so much and Jeremy was such a gentleman. I really didn’t know how he was going to come back at then end of the month and top himself.

The difference in venues was amazing. Although the La Berrique was an amazing venue for an intimate show, Coronet Cinema was a truly amazing and breathe taking venue. Although it was a larger venue, the show was still very intimate, perfect for Jeremy’s last leg of the little tour that could.

Putting the venue aside, Jeremy definitely topped himself. He managed to perform some of the same songs he did in the first show, but bettered them and made them sound different without changing the song. The band that were assisting Jeremy were amazing. Although it was very hard for everyone to keep their eyes of the too-handsome Jeremy, the band did not just blend in to the background.

The only similarity between the 31st of March and the 29th of April shows was that they were both inspirational and emotional.

Jeremy performed ‘Stephanie’, a song he wrote for a girl he met after a show who suffered from Lupus. Jeremy was touched by her story and wrote a song for her. When he performed ‘Stephanie’, the whole crowd fell silent. It was the most moving performance I have ever seen. I believe that even if that was the first performance you saw of Jeremy, you would fall in love with his music. In my opinion, the song showcases his talent of song writing like no other song.

Jeremy also made me go weak at the knees when he looked at me while singing a line from Lemonade. Jeremy, if you read this, I don’t know if you did it intentionally but you looked at me at both shows, while singing the same line, you made me feel like a crazy fan-girl! It’s not good! =P (You know I enjoyed it though!)

Bluey Robinson also put on an amazing set. It was the first time I heard of Bluey, and he made me want to hear more of him! Esmée Denters also made a brief appearance!

Jeremy also stayed behind after the show once again. I can speak for everybody when I say, we appreciated that!

Altogether, an amazing show.

I mentioned in my previous post, A night with Passion, that I would be interviewing Jeremy. Unfortunately, with his busy schedule, it was not possible for me to interview him. However, although I did want to interview him face to face, since there is something special about that, I know there are other ways of interviewing him. Also, although I was a little upset, I am now more inspired and motivated to get more into the role of a Journalist! I have always dreamed of going to America after I finish uni, and by watching amazing artists such as Jeremy, AJ Rafael, Victor Kim and JR Aquino, to name a few, I am more determined to move to America and become a Journalist! So I can interview the people who inspire me!

So Jeremy, when I come to the states, I will interview you! Whether you like it or not! =P

I forgot to tell you face to face how much you actually inspire me to make a difference, through what I have a passion for (Since I don’t have a good singing voice!).

To sum it all up, Jeremy is a huge inspiration and he definitely put on a great show, twice in London, on The Little Tour That Did.