Welcome to Deadline’s International Disruptors, a feature where we’ll shine a spotlight on key executives and companies outside of the U.S. who are shaking up the offshore marketplace. This week, we’re speaking with Korean super-agent Soyoung Lee, who represents some of the nation’s biggest stars and talked to us about her experiences of the Korean content boom.
Few have been better placed to both witness and be part of the Korean content explosion than Soyoung Lee, super-agent and founder of one of the nation’s largest talent agencies, Saram Entertainment.
When she opened what was then called Jaewon Promotion Co almost exactly two decades ago – mainly specializing in marketing major brands such as McDonald’s – Soyoung could never have foreseen that by 2022 she would be representing some of the biggest and most in-demand stars not just in Korea but the world.
'From Scratch' Reigns Over Netflix Top 10, Dethroning Ryan Murphy's 'The Watcher'
“We started completely by chance,” she tells Deadline, speaking on Zoom via a translator in late July. “I met actor Cho Jin-woong (Deep Rooted Tree) and he asked me how management companies could also provide marketing to develop his brand. I said I’d help and that was really the start of my entertainment business.”
Fast-forward two decades from her chance meeting with Cho and Soyoung’s talent roster is enough to leave rivals green with envy.
Her team now represent the likes of Squid Game breakout Hoyeon, who wowed the world with her performance as North Korean defector and general badass Kang Sae-byok and is now starring in Apple TV+’s Disclaimer, Minha Kim, who plays teen Sunja in the same streamer’s critically-acclaimed Pachinko, and Yeri Han, Monica from Academy Award-nominated tearjerker Minari.
And those three don’t tell half the story. A number of other Squid Game stars have been on Saram’s books for years and the agency is seen as very much blooding the next generation of acting talent from the nation that forged Netflix’s most popular show of all time.
Soyoung therefore had a front row seat as she witnessed the colossal impact first of Bong Joon-ho’s Academy Award-winner Parasite and subsequently Squid Game, which stole the global zeitgeist as views racked up in their hundreds of millions when the world was stuck indoors due to COVID.
The global non-English language boom has been driven at least in part by COVID, Soyoung thinks, although she also credits Lee Isaac Chung’s Minari for getting the ball rolling.
“I saw Minari going to Sundance as the start but COVID increased the users of OTT platforms massively and suddenly people were open to worldwide content,” she explains. “So we were given lots of opportunities to create more content. Those Korean dramas were loved by audiences and I’m so happy with the results.”
Soyoung believes she identified Squid Game‘s transformative power early on, recognizing that it was going to break through like nothing before due to the likability of its characters and universal themes of money and power.
“It was new, exciting and presented charming and unique actors to a world audience,” she says.
Soyoung speaks to Deadline just a week after Hwang Dong-hyuk’s breakout became the first non-English language show to be nominated for a mainstream Emmy, but one show that narrowly missed out was Apple TV+’s Pachinko, a disappointment for Soyoung, who calls the show “brilliant and personal.” Soo Hugh’s devastating drama based on Min Jin Lee’s New York Times bestselling novel follows Kim Sunja, the young version of whom is played by Saram client Minha Kim, a sweeping saga chronicling the hopes and dreams of a Korean immigrant family across four generations as they leave their homeland to survive and thrive.
Next up from Korea, Soyoung has her eye on Carter, an action thriller that launched late last week about an amnesiac agent thrown into the middle of a mysterious mission, which stars Saram client Jeong So-ri.
U.S. Agent Stampede
Squid Game‘s success created a stampede as the biggest U.S. agents battled it out for representation of the show’s stars, including Saram’s Hoyeon, who signed with CAA alongside Director Hwang and lead Lee Jung-Jae, while Hae-soo Park, who played Sang-Woo, signed for CAA rival UTA two weeks ago.
Was Soyoung ever concerned that the might of the U.S. agencies would damage her relationship with her biggest clients?
She rejects this notion, positing that having representation from agencies in two continents boosts her clients’ chances of getting work. None have left her since signing in the U.S, while the likes of Hoyeon have secured major roles in Disclaimer and A24’s The Governess.
“The point is that we are managing the actors together,” she says. “If we communicate closely with the U.S. then we can think about scheduling, discuss a project and give them the best chance of landing a show.”
And Korean TV and film has exploded to such an extent that Soyoung now believes she can help U.S. actors land work on Korean projects in much the same way as the likes of CAA and UTA can help her stars break into Hollywood.
Furthermore, Soyoung is no stranger to working with U.S. agents and that work pre-dates Squid Game.
At 2019’s Busan Film Festival, she unveiled a JV with Artist International Group CEO David Unger to rep a diverse set of clients across their Seoul and LA offices, with the goal of producing and packaging film, TV and local language content.
Artist’s talent up for grabs included huge stars such as Michelle Yeoh, Anil Kapoor and Extreme Job‘s Hanee Lee.
That JV was somewhat stymied by COVID, according to Soyoung, but she says the pair are “helping each other develop beneficial contacts in our respective regions and facilitating meetings as opportunities present themselves.”
“We are pleased with where we are now and the relationship is ongoing,” she adds.
The job of combining with the U.S. has been made easier by the different ways in which agenting is conducted in the two nations.
In Korea, firms like Saram act as agent, manager and publicist, while in the U.S. a major piece of talent would likely have at least three different reps responsible for each of these areas.
Soyoung therefore can’t afford to have too many clients and instead focuses intensely on cultivating her base, often acting as an incubator for less established talent and drawing immense levels of loyalty once these stars have hit the big time.
“The Korean management system is just so different,” say Soyoung. “We are taking care of our stars’ careers. As a result, I am developing the stars, looking after their development and making them famous.”
She is, as any agent would of course proclaim, laser-focused on landing the best deals for her clients, and the loyal Korean approach lends this proclamation additional authenticity.
Our discussion therefore turns to the controversial deals struck with Squid Game talent before they broke out.
Considering that the show has had its impact valued at $1B and yet cost a fraction of this amount, director Hwang recently told Deadline he “absolutely no matter what” would have struck an IP-sharing deal with Netflix if he had his time again.
The creator and main stars’ lack of bonus or IP following Squid Game‘s mega success has been the subject of much debate and, while declining to address the controversy directly, Soyoung says she always negotiates fees that take into account the artist’s contribution and, crucially, the project’s budget on a case-by-case basis.
“We can suggest extra incentives if a project is successful and the production and platform can offer incentives even if they were not discussed while in contract,” she explains.
So what next for Soyoung and her Saram superstars?
The outfit flirted briefly with film production several years ago and, over the next five, Soyoung hints that she may return to that game.
She also wants to continue promoting her stars globally, riding the worldwide content boom’s wave beyond Korean shores and not letting go.
It’s a tall order but this super-agent, who has had such a front row seat as Korean shows have hit the big time, is up to the challenge.
원문 보기 : https://deadline.com/2022/08/saram-soyoung-kim-squid-game-pachinko-minari-international-disruptors-1235083436/
“Squid Game” star Hoyeon has been cast in Alfonso Cuarón’s upcoming Apple series “Disclaimer.”
Hoyeon will star in the series alongside previously announced cast members Cate Blanchett, Kevin Kline, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Kodi Smit-McPhee.
Based on the novel of the same name by Renee Knight, “Disclaimer” will star Blanchett as Catherine Ravenscroft, a successful and respected television documentary journalist whose work has been built on revealing the concealed transgressions of long-respected institutions. When an intriguing novel written by a widower (Kline) appears on her bedside table, she is horrified to realize she is a key character in a story that she had hoped was long buried in the past.
Hoyeon will play Kim. Described as ambitious, hardworking, and eager-to-please, Kim knows that working for Catherine Ravenscroft is going to be her big break.
내용 및 사진 발췌 : [Variety] ‘Squid Game’ Star Hoyeon Joins Alfonso Cuarón’s Apple Thriller Series ‘Disclaimer’ (March 17, 2022)
원문 링크 : https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/squid-game-hoyeon-alfonso-cuaron-apple-series-disclaimer-1235208352/
배우 한예리가 '2021 대한민국 대중문화예술상'에서 국무총리 표창을 수상했다.
28일 국립극장 해오름극장에서 개최된 '2021 대한민국 대중문화예술상'은 문화체육관광부가 주최하고, 한국콘텐츠진흥원이 주관하는 상으로, 대중문화예술의 사회적 위상을 높이고 대중문화 발전과 한류 확산에 기여한 이들을 격려하기 위해 마련된 대중문화예술 분야 최고 권위의 정부 포상제도. 이번 대한민국 대중문화예술상에서는 배우 한예리가 국무총리 표창을 수상, 국내외를 아우른 글로벌 영향력을 지닌 배우임을 다시 한번 입증했다. 특히 문화체육관광부에서 공적 기간, 활동 실적, 사회적 평판 및 인지도 등 다양한 항목을 종합적으로 심사하여 선정하는 상인만큼 이번 수상에 있어 더욱 큰 의의를 가진다.
한예리는 "이렇게 의미 있는 상을 주셔서 감사드린다. 그냥 막연하게 좋아하는 일을 하다 보니 이런 상까지 받게 되었다"는 말로 말문을 열었다. 이어, "한국 영화가 100년이 넘었기 때문에 많은 전 세계인들에게 영향을 주는 문화가 된 거 같다. 故 이춘연 선생님, 윤여정 선생님을 비롯한 많은 분께서 그 길을 잘 닦아주셔서 우리가 좋은 콘텐츠를 할 수 있는 것 같다"라며 선배 영화인에 대한 감사를 표한 한예리는 "대중 예술, 순수 예술을 비롯한 모든 분야의 예술인들께 존경을 표한다"라는 말로 소감을 마무리 지었다.
한예리는 2007년 영화 '기린과 아프리카'로 데뷔한 이래, 스크린과 브라운관을 오가는 꾸준한 작품 활동을 통해 다채로운 표현력과 진정성 있는 연기로 대중에 신뢰를 쌓아왔다. 특히, 전 세계를 사로잡은 영화 '미나리'의 주연으로 활약하며 섬세한 연기력을 바탕으로 관객들에게 따뜻한 울림을 전하며 공감과 위로를 자아냈다. 또 '2021 골드리스트 시상식'에서 여우주연상의 영예를 안아, 또 한 번 화제를 모으며 국내외 언론의 열띤 호평을 이끌었다. 뿐만 아니라, 올해 주요국 정상급 인사들이 참석한 '2021 P4G 서울 녹색미래 정상회의' 개회식 오프닝 공연에 무용수로서 참여, 다양한 방면의 대중문화예술을 아우르는 활약을 펼친 바 있다. 이처럼 작품 안팎으로 독보적인 존재감을 확장시키고 있는 배우 한예리가 앞으로 선보일 행보에 대해 귀추가 주목된다.
[사진 = 사람엔터테인먼트]
‘원 더 우먼’ 속 배우 이하늬의 디테일함을 살린 열연이 화제를 불러 모으고 있다.
이하늬 주연의 SBS 금토드라마 '원 더 우먼'은 비리 검사에서 하루아침에 재벌 상속녀로 인생 체인지가 된 후 빌런 재벌가에 입성한, 불량지수 100% 여검사의 '더블라이프 코믹버스터' 드라마다. 코믹한 웃음과 사이다 폭격에 미스터리함이 더해지면서 순간 최고 시청률이 20%까지 치솟으며 뜨거운 인기를 구가, 거침없는 상승세를 이어가고 있다.
이 가운데 배우 이하늬가 ‘원 더 우먼’에서 비리 검사 조연주와 재벌가 유민그룹의 총수이자 한주그룹의 며느리인 강미나, 1인 2역을 맡아 캐릭터를 완벽하게 소화해 내며 극의 완성도와 보는 재미, 두 마리 토끼를 다 잡았다는 호평을 얻고 있다. 이에 이런 반응을 얻을 수밖에 없는 이하늬의 디테일한 캐릭터 준비 과정을 파헤쳐 봤다.
#. 1인 2역에 맞춘 좌우 얼굴 사용법!
지난 3일, 이하늬의 공식 유튜브 채널 ‘하늬모하늬’에는 이하늬가 1인 2역 캐릭터를 소화하기 위해 사전부터 철저하게 준비를 하는 모습이 담긴 영상이 공개됐다. 여기서 이하늬는 스태프들과 함께 직접 헤어스타일부터 메이크업까지 사전 테스트를 해보며 한 얼굴로 다른 성격, 다른 이미지를 가진 두 캐릭터를 표현하기 위해 고민한 부분들을 여과 없이 공개했다. 이하늬는 직접 마일드한 캐릭터를 표현할 때는 왼쪽을, 지적이고 센 느낌을 할 땐 오른쪽 얼굴을 많이 쓰는 편이라고 언급, 1인 2역에 맞춘 좌우 얼굴 사용법을 공개하는가 하면, 스태프들과 입술 색깔부터 눈썹 정돈, 그리고 머리카락 컬 두께 등 디테일한 부분 또한 직접 체크하며 캐릭터를 완성시켰음을 밝혀 놀라게 했다.
#.영어는 기본! 불어 베트남어까지 N개 국어 마스터! 철저한 준비성!
컨셉 미팅은 시작에 불과했을 뿐, ‘하늬모하늬’ 채널을 통해 제작기 영상도 함께 공개됐다. 공개된 영상에는 배우 이하늬가 ‘원 더 우먼‘을 위해 얼마나 철두철미하게 캐릭터를 분석하고 공부했는지 느낄 수 있는 모습들이 담겨 있다. 특히 이런 영상들은 대중들이 알지 못했던 이하늬만의 섬세한 드라마 준비 과정으로 더욱 화제를 모으고 있다. 특히 ‘원 더 우먼’ 2회에서 며느리를 따돌리는 시댁 식구들의 코를 납작하게 만들어준 불어와 베트남어 대화 장면 비하인드를 담아 눈길을 끌었다. 이하늬는 촬영 전 직접 불어와 베트남어를 적극적으로 배우며 짧은 대사도 허투루 하는 법이 없는 모습을 보여준 것. 어렵고 생소한 발음에 당황하는 모습도 잠깐, 이하늬는 책상에 앉아 쉼 없이 발음을 교정하는 등 수험생 저리 가라 할 정도의 열정 가득한 모습을 보여줬고, 그 결과 ‘원 더 우먼’의 명장면을 탄생시켰다.
#몸 사리지 않는 열연ing 땅 파묻히기부터 리얼 액션까지!
그런가 하면 몸 사리지 않는 이하늬의 열연이 캐릭터의 완성도를 높였다. 이하늬는 극 중 남문파 적통 후계자 조연주 캐릭터를 맡아 극 초반 액션씬이 많았다. 이에 캐릭터의 완성도를 높이기 위해 이하늬는 액션 스쿨까지 다니며 연습에 매진, 액션 장면들을 대역없이 멋지게 소화해 ‘원 더 우먼’ 속 조연주의 파워풀한 매력을 더욱 돋보일 수 있게 했다. 더불어 빠른 습득력으로 합이 어려운 액션도 금방 몸에 익혀 “멋지다”라는 반응도 얻었다. 이런 결과는 이하늬가 오랜 기간 액션스쿨을 다니며 연습을 게을리 하지 않았기 때문에 얻을 수 있었던 것으로 더욱 뜻깊다. 뿐만 아니라 이하늬가 무더운 날씨에 땅속에 얼굴만 내놓고 파묻히는 장면까지 유쾌하게 소화해 리얼함을 더했다.
이렇게 이하늬의 노력이 담긴 ‘하늬모하늬’ 제작기 영상을 본 네티즌들은 “액션부터 외국어까지 다 했다니.. 미친 매력”, “엄청난 노력의 결과인 만큼 너무 재미있어요”, “금토 본방 스트리밍 놓치지 않고 있어요”, “액션 자세 진짜 최고, 베트남어 할 때도 너무 매력적이었어요”, “멋있다는 말 밖에는 할 말이 없네요” 등 뜨거운 반응을 내비쳤다.
작품과 배역을 위해서라면 말 그대로 자신을 아끼지 않고 온 몸을 내던지는 열정을 보여주고 있는 이하늬. 사전 준비 과정부터 꼼꼼하게 캐릭터의 디테일한 부분까지 챙겨 캐릭터를 완성시킨 이하늬인 만큼, 그의 존재 자체가 ‘원 더 우먼‘을 보게 하는 시청 포인트가 되고 있다.
한편 이하늬의 ‘원 더 우먼’ 제작기는 유튜브 ‘하늬모하늬’ 채널에서 확인할 수 있으며, 하드캐리를 이어가고 있는 ‘원 더 우먼’은 매주 금, 토 밤 10시 SBS를 통해 방송된다.
[사진 = SBS ‘원 더 우먼’ 제공, 유튜브 하늬모하늬 캡처]
BY LAURA REGENSDORF / APRIL 25, 2021
The red carpet's return brought a fresh dose of glamour—and some perfectly relaxed polish.
The collective, pent-up desire to get dressed up and party found a high-profile focus group tonight at the 93rd Academy Awards, where nominees returned to the IRL red carpet in true, dazzling form. It wasn't just the parade of golden fashion looks (statuesque in the literal sense) that turned heads. The evening's best hair and makeup moments tapped into Old Hollywood finesse along with an of-the-moment sense of ease.
On the side of timeless glamour, Amanda Seyfried channeled the mood of her Oscar-nominated performance in Mank, as seen in a side-swept chignon that evoked screen stars past. Borat's Maria Bakalova offered another take on the classic updo-and-red-lip pairing, her textured blonde hair rooted in the 21st century.
One Night in Miami... director Regina King showed off the perennial appeal of a sleek, center-parted bob, while best actress nominee Andra Day made the case for a crown of piled-high curls—accessorized with shimmery gilded eyes and a generously bared leg, like a Neoclassical goddess for a new age.
There was also an appeal to springtime color befitting the optimistic turn lately in the air. A regal Angela Bassett paired her glossy blown-out hair with a violet-rimmed gaze. Viola David, nominated for her full-bodied turn as Ma Rainey, kept things light and sunny, with pink lipstick set against her airy white gown. And Promising Young Woman director Emerald Fennell matched her pale lilac eye shadow to her gauzy floral dress, looking as radiant as every Oscar hopeful should.
FROM GETTY IMAGES.
[CREDIT : COURTESY OF SARAM Entertainment]
Actor Shin Juhwan signs with SARAM Entertainment
SARAM Entertainment stated that “Shin Juhwan is an actor who has a wide spectrum of acting abilities reaching various genres in films and dramas. He has a passion for acting, as well as patience and bursting energy, and he has a very creative perspective and directing experience. We will fully support him that he can reach his full potential in various areas.”
Making his debut in 2013 in a short film, ‘Young Artists,’ Shin has further acted in ‘Fashion King’ ‘Hit-and-Run Squad,’ ‘0.0MHz,’ ‘The Producers,’ ‘Cheese in the Trap,’ ‘Arthdal Chronicles,’ ‘Café Midnight,’ and so on. He has shown his uniqueness and strong acting skills in playing various roles. In addition, he also wrote and directed a short film ‘Sexking’ and won the Best Korean Short award at the Toronto Korean Film Festival and FLYASIAN best Short film at the 8th Festival du film coreen a Paris, proving himself as a talented artist in both acting and directing.
[CREDIT : COURTESY OF SARAM Entertainment]
Actress Moon Choi (aka Choi Heeseo) signed with SARAM Entertainment.
SARAM stated that “Moon is an actress who has played significant roles with her detailed acting skills, and has continuously proven herself in all the films she played. We’ll provide utmost supports and energy to help her expand her acting career.”
Moon has made her debut in 2009 with a film ‘Lifting Kingkong’ and has played various roles in ‘Dongju: The Portrait of a Poet,’ ‘Anarchist from Colony,’ ‘Okja,’ ‘Big Forest,’’ and so on.
Also in the movie ‘Anarchist from Colony’, she played the role Fumiko Kaneko, a lover and a supporter of Park Yeol (played by Lee Jehoon), which lead to her to receive the Best New Actress award and the Best Actress award at the 54th DaeJong Film Awards, and she swept total of 12 awards.
In addition, she has multiple language abilities, fluent in Japanese, English and good in Italian, and Chinese.
Recently she has been acclaimed through a recent hit, ‘Deliver Us from Evil’ and tvN’s tv-show ‘Stranger 2’ which is available on Netflix with her detailed and rich emotional performance.
The future of the actress is more promising as we witness how she makes whatever character she faces into her own.