The saying, 'Any publicity is good publicity' is not true in terms of Korean celebrities. In fact, negative publicity has ended careers of many celebrities in Korean entertainment industry. The latest being Way V Lucas Won's gaslighting scandal, which has forced the KPop singer to take a break from all activities.
Bullying, gaslighting and sexual harassment scandals have put careers of a number of KPop and Korean drama celebrities on hold. Fans can really make or break the careers of celebrities in Korea. Here are seven celebrities, who either had to end to their entertainment career or have taken a break from their entertainment careers because of these scandals.
AOA Ji Min
Former AOA member Kwon Mina's allegations of harassment and bullying resulted in the group's former leader Shin Ji Min ending her career as a singer and performer. She was not only asked to leave the group AOA but also retired from the entertainment industry. Reason: Major backlash by netizens and fans turning anti-fans, after Mina tried to commit suicide and blamed Ji Min for her unstable mental condition.
Actor Ji Soo was on top of his game when allegations of him being a bully broke the internet. One of his middle school batchmate had posted on social media that Ji Soo used to be a bully. The actor was filming for the drama River Where The Moon Rises when allegations were made against the actor. Initially, he tried to refute these claims but later tendered an apology. Another claim of him sexually harassing a batchmate also started making rounds on social media. The actor has refuted this claim and has filed legal suit against those posting malicious comments against him.
But the damage was made and negative publicity led KBS to replace Ji Soo in the drama and despite the fact that 80 percent of the drama was filmed, it was reshot with Na In Woo in the lead role. Ji Soo was also ousted by his agency and will soon be joining military to complete the mandatory service. Ji Soo will be taking a break from the drama industry.
Kim Jung Hyun
Kim Jung Hyun was basking in the glory of success of his previous drama Mr Queen, when Dispatch released pictures of him with his Crash Landing On You co-star Seo Ji Hye with claims that the star was in a relationship. The couple soon refuted the claims. Annoyed with this, the Dispatch released a report of Kim Jung Hyun acting unprofessionally in the sets of 2018 drama Time. He was said to have behaved rudely with his co-actress Girl's Generation's Soohyun. A report claimed that he was being controlled by his then girlfriend Seo Ye Ji and had had left Soohyun in tears due to his rude behavior.
This led to a rift between Kim Jung Hyun and his agency and the actor filed a suit against his label O&Entertainment. The actor issued an apology for his behavior during filming of the drama Time. The fans turned anti-fans and started criticizing Kim Jung Hyun on social media. Though Kim Jung Hyun is not officially taking a break, he does not have any new projects in his kitty since one year.
Seo Ye Ji
Seo Ye Ji rose to top with her performance in the 2020 drama It's Okay To Not Be Okay opposite Kim Soo Hyun. She had bagged lead role in the movie Recalled and was also cast as the female lead in OCN drama Island when allegations of the actress gaslighting actor Kim Jung Hyun broke. Due to negative publicity, Seo Ye Ji couldn't even take part in promotional activities of her movie Recalled. Later, she had to drop out of drama Island. Thus, currently the much-in-demand actress has no dramas in her kitty.
KPop singer Soojin of (G)I-DLE had to halt her activities when her former middle school classmate made allegations of bullying against her. The singer refuted these claims and said that she was being targeted. But the claims were taken seriously, once actress Seo Shin Ae, who was Soojin's junior in school, also made similar allegations. Seo Shin Ae stated that she was bullied by the singer for two years. This led to the singer's social media being bombarded with negative comments. The agency which had supported the singer initially later decided to ask Soojin to leave (G)I-DLE, as it affected the group's activities.
If bullying and gaslighting incidents forced the above mentioned stars to put their activities on hold, Kris Wu's career has come to an end with the singer being arrested in China following rape and sexual harassment charges. At least 26 victims [many of them minor girls] came forward and stated that Kris Wu had forced them into sexual acts in an inebriated state. He was detained on July 31 and was formally arrested on August 17. Kris Wu's Social Media accounts have been deleted and songs have been removed from streaming sites.
Way V's Lucas Wong
Way V member Lucas Wong is the latest KPop singer to apologize for his past behavior. Several netizens came forward to accuse Lucas Wong of cheating them. His former partners claimed that the singer had abused his identity as a star and cheated on them after being romantically involved with them. As his social media accounts are being bombarded with negative comments, Wong has decided to take a break from his KPop career. He was part of several KPop groups including WayV, SuperM and NCT and will not be promoting any activities under these groups.