How Do Korean Entertainers Overcome the Economic Crisis

The Korean entertainment industry is not immune to the global economy downturn with entertainers using various methods to overcome this crisis.


1. Lowering paychecks
With investors far more unwilling to invest now, many actors/actresses have taken the drastic step of lowering their paychecks. Top stars like Choi Ji Woo, Song Seung Hun, Kim Rae Won, Kwon Sang Woo, etc are prime examples.

2. No more managers, cars (transport)
More and more entertainers choose to strike out on their own so that they need not share their earnings with their management agency. Some don’t even hire managers anymore to cut costs. Some management agencies have also taken the step to stop providing their entertainers with cars.

3. Earning from Overseas (currency)
With the Japanese yen holding strong against the Korean won, entertainers stand to profit more if they were paid in the earlier currency. For example, Shin Hye Sung went to Japan for his solo concert last month. His management pointed out, “Before he went to Japan, the ratio (currency rate) was 1:8. But the ratio now is 1:14, so the already profitable profits are now doubled.

4. Increasing workload
Being the main lead in a drama/movie isn’t the way out. Even if the paycheck is low, being part of a supporting cast in many dramas/movies will earn that person quite a substantial amount of money. The chance to appear in a long running daily drama (airs Monday – Friday) is highly profitable and attractive to many entertainers if they get the opportunity to appear in one.


5. Appearing in various events
There’s no differentiation between your “main job” (acting) or “secondary job” (others). Many entertainers who were reticent to filming dramas, appearing on variety have now turned their eyes to appearing on variety shows.

6. Staying United
Interpersonal relationships are of great importance when in times like this. In Family Outing, Lee Chun Hee was able to stay on the show as a permanent cast thanks to his strong teacher-student relationship with Kim Su Ro.

7. Baring It
The idea of attracting attention with provocative scenes has reared its head. Kim Min Sun had several provocative scenes in her movie Portrait of a Beauty including appearing nude and portrayals of homosexuality. It seem to have some effect at the box office, garnering 1 million views after just nine days. But her management refuted the saying, “This production of this movie started last year so we didn’t predict that the economy would be that bad now. But Kim Min Sun’s nudity did have some effect on the box office, that’s a fact.”

11 thoughts on “How Do Korean Entertainers Overcome the Economic Crisis

  1. WOW…..they really hav many things to do since the economy downturn…can u all imagine..~Song Hye Gyo might be seen in Star Golden Bell..???? – hope everything turns alright sooner….(hoping not to hear any commit suicide in korean entertainment industry bcoz of the downturn economy….)

  2. Thats like crazy. O_O
    But really if they are not going to use cars then what are they going to use as transport?

  3. Still rich, they have wayyy more money than the average ones. IF K-celebs ‘have’ to do this, then wth are Korean citizens sorting to?

    The stars can totally live off the fans, the fans will provide transportation (I’m sure), and more.

  4. Even though the celebs are way richer than the average one, they still needs to sacrifice some thing average one doesn’t.
    Celebs still needs to cut down lots of luxury stuff and IF they can’t they just need to cut down on others to make money for the luxury…

    A friend of mine who loves luxury and can’t afford it.
    She has like 2-3 parttime jobs… – worst part is? – she even choose to cut down on her foodsuply, watersuply, heatsuply, electricity etc. just to be able to ‘keep’ the luxury.
    I think its stupid… Cut down on the luxury and you’ll get enough money for more needed stuff like food.

    I think it’s he same with some celebs..

  5. Some people who already accustomed with luxury will be hard to cut down it.

    Well, live in simplicity is better no matter we are rich or poor. Ah…this economy crisis effects my country alot. Seems everything will be even worse.

  6. It’s like this. YOU SEE WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE. That means, looking at stuff with ONE thing in mind, it will more likely seem to have to do with that, and not something else. But it’s not very scientific is it?

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