Jang Dong-gun to star in fantasy actioner

Another one? We all remembered how big a bomb The Promise was, right?

Nonetheless, Laundry Warrior (ha ha, what a title), which is a Hollywood production, sounds interesting on paper.

Jang Dong-gun checks out his lovely
Laundry Warrior
co-star, Kate Bosworth (inset).

The film is produced by Barrie Osborne, the same person who produced the Lord of the Rings and Matrix, and will be helmed by Korean Lee Seung-moo.

Jang Dong-dun will be sharing screen time with Geoffrey Rush (Pirates of the Caribbean) and Kate Bosworth (Superman Returns).

The futuristic film is about an Asian warrior’s adventure in the American west. Jang plays the fugitive warrior who hides out in the badlands, where he meets a town drunk (Rush) and a woman who wants revenge for the abuse she suffered as a child (Bosworth).

Filming is set to begin on Nov 12 in New Zealand.

Let’s hope Mr. Jang’s first foray into Hollywood will be vastly different from his turn in Chen Kaige’s The Promise. I can’t help it, the fantasy movie is so bad, it’s so memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Source: Digital Chosunilbo
Pics credit: HanCinema

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Seo Taeji to make a comeback

Published on November 3, 2007 by in Buzz, Music

Now Rooster can relive her angst-ridden teenage years because Seo Taeji is making a comeback in 2008! His 8th album drops in March.

Seo Taeji’s back to rock you!

But before that, the 90s pop idol will cause a quite stir in the Korean music industry by releasing a 15th anniversary album on Nov 29 and holding a concert in December.

The 35-year-old will go solo as his band “The Boys” will not be returning with him. Yang Hyun-suk for one is too busy running YG Entertaiment ;-) .

Seo Taeji’s new album concept is being kept a secret.

Source: KBS Global
Pic credit:

Seo Taeji profile

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Momo 모모 (Michael Ende)

Published on November 3, 2007 by in Dramas


Fans of the 2005 MBC drama My name is Kim Samsoon – did you know that Momo, the character that Samsoon talks about in the drama originated from a fantasy novel of the same name by Michael Ende? Initially, I thought Momo was a Korean character, sort of like Pucca, but I was wrong.

Momo, also known as The Grey Gentlemen or The Men in Grey was published in 1973. It was originally written in German, but you may find the English translation on the shelves today. Micheal Ende is also the author of the bestselling novel The Neverending Story (if you haven’t read the book, you might have seen the movie).

Various covers of the Children’s classic – Momo

Momo – the synopsis

Momo, is a little Italian girl who lives in the ruins of an amphitheatre just outside an unnamed Italian city. She is remarkable in the neighbourhood because she has the extraordinary ability to listen – really listen. By simply being with people and listening to them, she can help them find answers to their problems.

The baddies in the story are called Men in Grey. They steal time from people. By representing the Timesavings Bank, they promote the idea of timesaving – time which can be deposited to the bank and returned later with interest. They make people forget all about their savings but not about the resolution to save as much time as possible “for later use”. Gradually, life becomes sterile, devoid of all things considered time-wasting – like art, imagination or even sleeping.

Momo rescues the city from the evil plan of the Men in Grey thanks to her special personality. Other characters in the book are Professor Secundus Minustus Hora and Cassiopeia (a tortoise which can communicate though writing on her shell and has the ability to see 30 minutes into the future).

Momo – in the drama

Little Mi-joo is Jin-heon’s (Hyun Bin) niece. After the shock of witnessing the death of both her parents in a tragic car crash, she has not spoken. Samsoon (Kim Sun-a) initiates a “baking therapy” session for little Mi-joo. It was then that Samsoon introduced Mi-joo to Momo. Samsoon says, “Momo was an orphan and she did not talk but is a very good listener, just like Mi-joo.”

Samsoon tells Mi-joo about Momo during a fun baking session.
The child & Jin-heon listens intently.

When Jin-heon goes on a shopping outing with
ex-girlfriend Hee-jin one day,
Mi-joo spots
the book (Momo) and insists on buying it.

Jin-heon secretly bought a copy for himself too
and reads the book

A troubled Jin-hyeon finds comfort by reading Mi-joo a
bedtime story.
They read about the adventures of Momo.
(Orchid would like Hyun Bin to read her a bedtime story too..;-)

After a day at the aquarium, Samsoon reads to a sleepy Mi-joo

Dream sequence where Mi-joo dreams about Momo,
Professor Secundus Minustus Hora and Cassiopeia

Purchase Momo (Puffin Books) from Amazon now!

Reference: Wikipedia


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Kim Tae-hee is Korea’s Angelina Jolie?

“One expression” actress Kim Tae-hee has been compared to Hollywood’s pouty-lipped beauty Angelina Jolie. Can you believe that?

Hollywood’s Angelina Jolie

The comparison comes after the 27-year-old actress displayed some nifty action moves in her latest flick Fight, a Korean movie similar to the Jolie-Pitt starrer Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

Helmed by Han Ji-seung, the plot is about a couple in love who ends up in a no holds barred fight with each other.

Korea’s Kim Tae-hee…nah, we’re kiddin’. See, no one fell for that, right? Right?

Kim, who played the evil stepsister in Stairway to Heaven, starred opposite Seol Kyung-koo in Fight.

I wish I could watch the show to see what all the hype is about. What do you think? Can you imagine Kim Tae-hee as South Korea’s Angelina Jolie? I can’t because Kim is so delicate while Jolie has, like, raw sex appeal.

Source: KBS Global
Pics credit: Celebrity Hot Video & CYON idea

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Big Bang (빅뱅)

Big Bang debuted last year (2006) and their gruelling pre-debut training was chronicled for all to see in the Big Bang reality documentary, which was aired on the MTV channel.

The band’s journey to stardom started off with six boys busting their asses for a spot in the group. The teens underwent intense vocal and dance training – the kind that would make any individual with lesser determination cower.

As weeks went by, the young men proved that they have much passion and drive to reach their dreams, so very commendable in ones so young.

BigBang boys: (From left) T.O.P, Seung Ri, Tae Yang, Dae Sung and G-Dragon

Not all of them made the cut. Initially, two were dropped – SO-1 and Seung-ri – making Big Bang a quartet. However, head honcho of YG Entertainment Yang Hyun-suk decided to give the pair a second chance. The youngest of the lot Seung-ri eventually proved that he was right for the group. And so, Big Bang debuted as a quintet at the YG Family concert on Aug 19, 2006.

The band released its first full-length album in Jan 2007. While tracks from the album, and a few single albums prior to it, were practically unheard of here in Malaysia, the group hit music gold with the release of a mini-album in Aug 2007.

The song Lie (거짓말) – a get-up-and-dance track with a seriously infectious hook – is currently at the top of music charts and has been receiving loads of airplay…and yes, Malaysians are hearing it loud and clear too. (Watch the Lie MV!)

Meet the boys of Big Bang:

G-Dragon (G-드래곤)
A YG trainee since 12-years-old, G-Dragon is a rapper and beat-boxer. The now 19-year-old also writes and produces many of Big Bang’s songs. He wrote the hit single Lie. ;-)
Real name: Kwon Ji-yong (권지용)
Date of birth: Aug 18, 1988
Education: Seoul Korean Traditional Arts Middle & High School
Position: Leader/ Main rapper

At 20, T.O.P is the eldest in the group. You can easily tell him apart from the rest because he usually has his shades on. He is a rapper and a talented beat-boxer…and actor!
Former stage name: Tempo
Real name: Choi Seung-hyun (최승현)
Date of birth: November 4, 1987
Education: Seoul Art College (Majoring in Musical)
Position: Rapper/ Beat boxer

Tae Yang (태양)
The shy and sensitive one of the group had his first kiss in the My Girl MV. He has been with YG since he was 12. While he started out as a rapper, he is currently Big Bang’s vocalist. The now 19-year-old is working on a solo album and will be the first from the group to release a solo album.
Former stage name: Young Bae Taekwon
Real name: Dong Young-bae (동영배)
Date of birth: May 18, 1988
Position: Vocalist

Dae Sung (대성)
Nicknamed Smiling Angel, the 18-year-old is known for his sense of humour and talent in imitating others. The vocalist also has an obsession with Doreamon! Ha ha ha.
Real name: Kang Dae-sung (강대성)
Date of birth: April 26, 1989
Education: KyeongIn High School
Position: Vocalist

Seung Ri (승리)
The youngest of the lot is a talented dancer and choreographer. The 17-year-old was on Battle Shinhwa, a program that was searching for the 2nd Shinhwa, a successful Korean band. He was rejected in the show because his vocals failed to impress but recruited by YG’s head honcho as a trainee.
Former stage name: V (for Victory)
Real name: Lee Seung-hyun (이승현)
Date of birth: Dec 12, 1990
Position: Vocalist

Official BigBang website: http://ygbigbang.com/

Mini album:

  • Always (Aug 2007)


  • With U (Japan & Korea, May 2008)
  • For the World (Japan, Jan 2008)
  • 1st Concert Live Album – The Real (Feb 2007)
  • Since 2007 (Dec 2006)

Single albums:

  • Big Bang 03 (Nov 2006)
  • Big Bang is V.I.P (Sept 2006)
  • The First Single Album (Aug 2006)

Finally, the one who got the boot:

Jang Hyun-seung (장현승) or SO-1, did not pass the audition to become a member due to his shyness on stage. But, there are many fansites dedicated to the lad, cheering him on to follow his dream.

Source: Wikipedia
Pics credit:
BigBang Official website & Newsen

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K-popped! Trio gets ready for Deepavali

Hallyuwood meets Bollywood at K-popped! as the Trio is all set to join the Deepavali (or Diwali) celebrations.

Also known as the Festival of Lights, the occasion marks the triumph of good over evil and is celebrated in Malaysia by the Hindu community, mainly consisting those of Indian ethnic origin. This year, Deepavali falls on Nov 8.

Hallyuwood meets Bollywood: The Trio dresses up for Diwali

As you can see, the K-popped! Trio has swapped their Hallloween costumes for the Indian traditional wear called sari. Each of us is snuggly wrapped up in 6 metres of cloth. The red pottu (dot in the centre of the forehead) denotes happiness and well-being.

Rooster is up to her hilarious antics again, this time shaking her bon-bon to bhangra music. Burning off the calories are we, Rooster? Had one too many murukkus? ;-)

Orchid is definitely getting into the spirit of things as her broad smile that lights up the site is only matched by the deepam (oil lamps) she holds in her hands.

And last but not least, with sweet-smelling jasmine flowers in my hair, I’ve burst into a song about the victory of light over dark.

We hope you’ll get into the spirit of things as well and enjoy the Deepavali celebrations with us. Another festival means another round of good food and great company! Malaysia and its many festivals rock.

Virtual murukkus and drinks for all K-popped! visitors. Munch away, friends.

Before: The Trio goes trick or treat-ing in their Halloween costumes ;-)

K-popped! Trio’s other antics…so far:

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BoA, Xiah, Tablo and Jinbora are Anyband

Published on November 1, 2007 by in Buzz, Music

BoA, TVXQ’s Xiah, Tablo and Jinbora are the members of Anyband, Samsung’s new marketing scheme for their line of Anycall mobile phones. It is said that as well as being the new faces for Anycall, the collaborating artists will perform together as a pop group. Hmm, what will they think of next?

The Anyband micro-site is now up at Samsung’s website which apparently seems to be some sort of countdown to… something. Either that or my incredibly slow connection is hampering any site function.

The quartet will be appearing in a CF and MV (ah, so that’s what Xiah and BoA were doing in Brazil) soon to be aired on television.

Source: q.sohu.com
Pic Credit: Anycall

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Human LCD Display

Published on November 1, 2007 by in About Korea

Armed with just a double sided jacket, a colour tee and a mass of soccer fans wearing the same thing – this is what you can achieve:

Samsung, you’re so passe. This is technology with raw emotion.

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In Search of Lost Time (Marcel Proust)

Published on November 1, 2007 by in Dramas


In the drama My Lovely Samsoon, on the beautiful island of Jeju, Kim Samsoon (Kim Sun-a) tells Dr Henry Kim (Daniel Henney) about the famous French cake – the Madeleine. Samsoon is a patisserie by profession and was trained at the famous Le Cordon Bleu cooking school in France. She explains to Henry in faltering English (really cute), the association of the Madeleine and the French book In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust.

The drama stills illustrate.

Madeleine is most famous cookie in France

Samsoon continues to tell Henry about how the author
of the book writes about dipping the cookie in tea and discovers how
wonderful that is. She encourages Henry to try it.

Henry says…Hmmmm…delicious.
“I’ve heard about it (the book), but I haven’t read it yet.”

“This is sexy cookie”
(pronounce it the Kim Samsoon way – “sekshi cookie“)

Madeleines are perhaps most famous outside France for their association with involuntary memory in the Marcel Proust novel À la recherche du temps perdu (Remembrance of Things Past in the first translation, more recently translated as In Search of Lost Time), in which the narrator experiences an awakening upon tasting a madeleine with limeflower tea:

“She sent out for one of those short, plump little cakes called petites madeleines, which look as though they had been moulded in the fluted scallop of a pilgrim’s shell. And soon, mechanically, weary after a dull day with the prospect of a depressing morrow, I raised to my lips a spoonful of the tea in which I had soaked a morsel of the cake. No sooner had the warm liquid, and the crumbs with it, touched my palate than a shudder ran through my whole body, and I stopped, intent upon the extraordinary changes that were taking place…at once the vicissitudes of life had become indifferent to me, its disasters innocuous, its brevity illusory…”
— Remembrance of Things Past, Volume 1: Swann’s Way.

While Samsoon is having her little tea party with Henry, both their respective beaus are rekindling their old romance – bringing to remembrance things in the past.

I commend the writers for weaving the little tea party in the hotel lobby, madeleines and what’s happening upstairs via a passage in literature. It’s just so seamless and cleverly done.

In Search of Lost Time or Remembrance of Things Past (French: À la recherche du temps perdu) is a semi-autobiographical novel in seven volumes by Marcel Proust (1871 – 1922). This book is pretty heavy reading though.

Front & back cover of In Search of Lost Time Volume 1:
The Way by Swann’s Penguin Literature

In Search of Lost Time Volume 1 (Marcel Proust)
The Way by Swann’s – Amazon Online Reader

Purchase the book on Amazon:
In Search of Lost Time: Proust 6-pack (Proust Complete)

Reference: Wikipedia


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A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)

Published on October 31, 2007 by in Movies

I don’t like watching horror movies because the creepy parts are automatically played on a loop in my head – days or weeks after the show. But since its Halloween, I’ve made an exception just for the occasion.

After many sleepless nights worrying about a long-haired, pale-white ghost with blood-shot eyes in a black dress standing over me on my bed, I bring you a K-popped!-style review of A Tale of Two Sisters.

Korean title: 장화, 홍련 (Jang-hwa, Hong-ryeon)

What’s popping:

A slow burning chiller about two sisters who are wary of their unstable stepmother, Eun-joo (Yeom Jung-ah, 염정아). Oh, but there is so much more behind the tense relationship because in this horror flick, what you see is not what you get.

Suffice to say that you won’t be sure who’s living and who’s dead until all is revealed. Reminds me of Nicole Kidman’s The Others or Bruce Willis’ Sixth Sense. However, it is entertaining in its own way and the revelation isn’t a letdown at all. The persons who are affected by a certain incident have something in common and they’re not even aware of it!

Living dead: ‘You know what girls? I see dead people.’

Creepy moments include the part when elder sister Su-mi (Im Su-jung, 임서정) has a nightmare. It took me a week to shake off the feeling of a long (and messy)-haired entity in a black dress crawling across the foot of my bed. Brrr…goosebumps.

The DVD for the movie is being sold at an affordable price at Speedy Video. Only RM10 for a copy with English subtitles! We grabbed it because we wanted to watch actress-in-demand, Im Su-jung doing her thang.

Trivia: The movie is a remake of The Story of Janghwa and Hongryeon (1924), which was also the 1st film made entirely by Koreans. Prior to this, the Japanese typically handled cinematography.

The story is based on the folklore of two sisters killed by their stepmother. The spirits of the girls cannot rest and haunt the village they once lived, searching for justice. Since that time, this popular tale has been remade no less than 7 times. And this is the most recent one. – Seoul magazine, August 2007 (Issue #49).

The plot:

Two sisters return home after a long stay at the hospital. Their stepmother tries to make them feel at home but the elder of the two, Su-mi, is hostile towards her while Su-yeon (Moon Geun-young, 문근영) is just plain scared of her.

Su-mi (left, Im) and Su-yeon (Moon) react to their
punishment of “no TV” for a whole month.

Creepy things start to happen in the house. A dinner guest suddenly convulses into a fit during dinner, things go bump in the night and Su-mi seems to be overly protective of her younger sister.

The story comes to a head when we see the stepmother going berserk, and drags a bloodied sack all over the house.

Watch it:

Get the DVD please…and Happy Halloween!

Pics credit: HanCinema

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