NBC: ‘Operation Chromite’ focuses on ‘Forgotten’ Korean War, bridging US and Korean cinema

 

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NBC News (by Stephany Bai):

Despite heavy involvement from the U.S. military, the Korean War is often referred to as “the forgotten war” because of its relatively low profile in history, according to military historians.

A new film, “Operation Chromite,” is spotlighting one of the key figures of the war, United States Gen. Douglas MacArthur. Liam Neeson portrays MacArthur in the film and is joined by two major Korean actors, Bum Soo Lee and Jung Jae Lee, in telling the story of the amphibious landing at Incheon, which the filmmakers say was one of the most consequential moments of the war. The movie, which makes its American debut on Aug. 12, opened at number one in South Korea, according to Variety.

[MacArthur] is a very well-known and respected figure in South Korea,” Bum Soo Lee told NBC News. “There may be people who have different ideologies in Korea, but overall the Korean people appreciate and respect what [General MacArthur and the US military] did.”

Liam Neeson, center, portrays Gen. Douglas MacArthur in “Operation Chromite,” a new movie about the Korean War. 

He added that the events portrayed in the film, and the people behind them, are directly responsible for the growth of South Korea, noting that the South Korean soldiers had been on the verge of giving up a key military stronghold when MacArthur executed the Incheon landing operation.

The Battle of Incheon and the landing operation cut the supply chain of the North Korean military and soldiers, and that contributed a lot to turning the tide of the war,” he said. “That lead to building democracy in South Korea and contributed to the economic growth that we’re seeing to this day.

Bum Soo Lee, center, in “Operation Chromite”

Bum Soo Lee plays the villain of the film, a North Korean spy, while Jung Jae Lee is a South Korean commander who infiltrates the North Korean army. Both actors emphasized to NBC News the research and preparation they did for the film.

What we as actors, as well as the director, focus so much on is speaking towards the truth,” Bum Soo Lee said. “This movie is based on a true event, on history. There was a lot of pressure on our shoulders because we were telling the story of these unsung heroes, who sacrificed themselves in the war, and we really wanted to pay respect to them.”

Jung Jae Lee added that the same was true for Neeson. “[Neeson] created new scenes and suggestions that were incorporated because he really tried his best to depict the real character,” Jung Jae Lee said. “The amount of effort he put into the character was really impressive.”

Jung Jae Lee said that he believes “Operation Chromite” represents a step toward greater collaboration between Hollywood and the Korean movie industry.

These days you see a lot of Hollywood movies open in advance in Korea, and big actors coming to promote their movies in Korea,” he said. “I can’t say there are a lot of Korean actors working in Hollywood, but the few we do already have are doing a great job in TV and movies. I believe that we’ll be able to see more of that in the near future.”

Figure skater Nathan Chen jumps his way into history at national championships

USA Today:

We have seen the future of U.S. figure skating and it is Nathan Chen.

Chen, 16, made history Sunday at the national championships by landing four quadruple jumps in his long program, more than any American skater ever, giving him a total of six over the two days of competition, a previously unthinkable number for a U.S. skater.

He did not win the men’s title, however. That honor went to veteran Adam Rippon, a lyrical skater who didn’t land a quad but still won his first national title at 26 with a score of 270.75 points. Max Aaron, the 2013 national champion, finished second (269.55), and Chen was third (266.93).

Third? Yes, third. Four quads were not good enough for first place. Chen is young and not fully developed as a skater and a jumper, but what a statement it would have been for the judges to have placed him first.

That said, all three skaters qualified for the world championships in Boston this spring, and Chen also will compete at the world junior championships in Hungary two weeks earlier, so he will get plenty of exposure on the international stage two years before the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea.

What proper table etiquette looks like in East and Southeast Asia…

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Mashable (by Chelsea Frisbie):

Whether you’re planning an international trip or you’re headed to a local cultural experience, it’s important to learn about the eating habits of the folks you’ll be dining with. What might seem silly to you could be incredibly important to someone else, so don’t judge.

Langford’s silverware shop has compiled a collection of the dining “Do’s” and “Don’ts”…

Here is an excerpt of East Asian and Southeast Asian countries’ dining etiquette.

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K-Pop group “Oh My Girl” mistaken for sex workers, detained at LA airport

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RocketNews 24:

OMG, indeed!!! Awkwardness broke out at Los Angeles International Airport when the members of up-and-coming K-Pop group Oh My Girl were detained on suspicion of being sex workers. According to a statement from the group’s label, WM Entertainment, US customs officials got the idea after searching through the girls’ costumes and props.

It’s actually quite surprising since, according to several videos of Oh My Girl stage shows, they tend to be rather conservatively dressed compared to other K-Pop offerings.

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With the addition of a possible visa problem, Oh My Girl’s eight women, aged 16 to 21, were held for 15 hours before reportedly boarding a plane back to South Korea. As a result they had to cancel a performance and photo shoot for their next album cover.

WM Entertainment is said to be currently seeking legal advice to determine if the detention was unjust, but no legal action has been taken. There are also no plans for the group to return to the USA at the moment.

A 6-year-old American girl impresses her cab driver by speaking fluent Korean

Next Shark:

A 6-year-old American girl who spoke fluent Korean to a taxi driver impressed not only the Korean driver but is impressing netizens as well.

In a video posted to Youtube and Reddit by her mother, Anaya, a U.S.-born citizen, speaks fluent Korean to a cab driver in the country, where both her parents work teaching English.

Among the topics of conversation with the driver is that her parents call her a “princess,” to which the driver replies that those called princesses in the country are considered pretty.

At one point in the clip, Anaya’s mother says, “Korean little,” to express her inability to speak the language fluently. Her young daughter steps right in, however, to tell the driver that her mother is pregnant with a “little big sister,” to which the driver corrects her Korean to “a little sister.”

In the video’s description, Anaya’s mother writes that her daughter’s conversation is awesome because “Korean is one of the top 3 hardest languages for English speakers to learn.” and “How many little black girls do you know personally that can speak Korean?”

The video of Anaya, now aged 8, was taken from two years ago. She moved to Korea when she was 1 and currently attends a Korean elementary school.

She adds:

“We put this video up as a way to show the benefits of raising your children abroad. This is meant to be a positive video to promote awareness that black people are traveling the world and our children are the products of our travels. We want to encourage others that it is possible!”

South Korean rapper G-Dragon visits photographer Terry Richardson’s studio

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After visiting Terry Richardson’s studio in 2012,  South Korean rapper G-Dragon returns to team up with the controversial photographer once again.

In the candid images, the musician channels his boisterous personality for the snaps, wearing leather pants and an oversized muscle T-shirt. In the past, the rapper has worked with Giuseppe Zanotti to release an exclusive capsule collection and even DRx Romanelli, for a collaborative project along with YG Entertainment

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Top 7 scariest Korean movies you should check out for Halloween

Koreaboo:

Here is a list of “7 Scariest Korean Movies You Should Watch for Halloween” in no particular order.

1. A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)


Inspired by a Korean legend, this is the odyssey of two sisters, who after spending time in a mental institution, return to the home of their father and cruel stepmother. Their recovery is affected by their stepmother’s increasing cruelty, together with appearances of the ghost of their mother, which creates an atmosphere of strange occurrences and irrespirable fear.image1

2. White: The Melody of the Curse (2011)


Girl group “Pink Dolls” is always pushed into the background by other popular idols. When the girls release their new song “White” – a remake from unknown origins they become instant sensations. But, when a member becomes the lead singer that person falls victim to a horrible accident, one by one. Eun-Joo then realizes that the song “White” is cursed.
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3. Death Bell (2008)


A group of elite high school students take classes for their college entrance exam. However, a television turns on, showing the smartest girl in school trapped in a fish tank that is being filled up with water. Through the television, a voice tells the students to answer questions related to the college entrance exam and each incorrect answer will lead to a death of another student.image1

4. The Red Shoes (2005)


AA woman who finds a pair of pink high heels on a subway platform soon realizes that jealousy, greed, and death follow them wherever they go.
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5. Whispering Corridors (1998)


An exclusive all-girls school, a former pupil returns to start a new job as a teacher and strikes up a friendship with two very different students. But when a teacher is found dead, apparently having committed suicide, circumstances that link the past and the present begin to unveil themselves. As the body count rises, the memories of past deaths begin to call forth a series of ghosts to haunt the corridors of this troubled school.
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6. Phone (2002)


Soon after Ji-won gets a new cell phone, her friend’s young daughter, Yeong-ju, puts it to her ear and immediately begins screaming in terror. When other strange things start happening in connection with the phone, Ji-Won does some investigating and discovers that of the people before her who had the same number, almost all of them died suddenly under unusual circumstances.

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7. Into the Mirror (2003)


Into the Mirror is a 2003 South Korean horror film about a series of grisly deaths in a department store, all involving mirrors, and the troubled detective who investigates them. It was the debut film of director Kim Sung-ho.
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Former Maxim model becomes Korea’s ‘Most Beautiful Police Officer’

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Next Shark (by Riley Schatzle):

A police officer is gaining attention in Korea for her gender and good looks.

Kim Miso was nominated for Miss Maxim Korea in 2014, however, she is now pursuing a career where she can protect and serve. According to Korea’s Dispatch, the 25-year-old Miso left modeling behind, trained at the Central Police Academy and now works for the Seoul Metropolitan Police Department.

She has since been dubbed the “most beautiful police officer in Korea.”Miso_08Miso_04

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Bon Jovi concerts in China cancelled due to support for Tibet and Dalai Lama

A string of Bon Jovi’s first-ever concerts in China have been cancelled, presumable after the Culture Ministry discovered a photo of Bon Jovi with the Dalai Lama

World Religion News:

It looks like Jon Bon Jovi won’t be singing “Livin’ on a Prayer” in Mandarin any time soon. The long-standing rock front man of the self-named band Bon Jovi would have been performing for the very first time in China at major concerts in Beijing and Shanghai if the Chinese government hadn’t forced those shows to be canceled, TIME reported. Currently on a major world tour with concert dates scheduled across Asia in Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, and others, the dates scheduled in Bangkok and Shanghai were canceled by Chinese authorities, who have not given any explicit reasons to the band or to the organizers of the tour, AEG Live Asia.

The most prevalent theory about why the sudden cancellations occurred that has been circulating the Internet is relatively obvious considering, if it turns out to be true, Bon Jovi would just be part of a string of bands to be banned from performing shows in China because of their support for Tibet and the Dalai Lama. As was reported in the Financial Times, apparently the very powerful and influential Culture Ministry for China’s ruling Communist Party found an image of Bon Jovi performing in front of a giant video screen with His Holiness the Dalai Lama featured on it at a concert in 2010.

“The issue of Tibet is especially sensitive right now as the Communist Party marks the 50th anniversary of the founding of what it calls the Tibet Autonomous Region”, said TIME.

Approaching the ever controversial 50th anniversary of what many in the Western world view as a continuing travesty in which China began governing Tibet after the Battle of Chamdo in 1950, the same time when the current Dalai Lama was enthroned. After being forced into exile in India with the remnants of the Tibetan government, where they established the Central Tibetan Administration in exile.

Pro-Tibet stances are not new or unusual, and many of the world’s most famous stars and celebrities have made public their support for Tibet and the Dalai Lama. There have been several other bands and musicians who have found themselves banned from China for support of Tibet, like Bjork in 2008, to Maroon 5, who were supposed to play a concert in China this month, but were forced to cancel after one member of the band tweeted a “Happy Birthday” message to the Dalai Lama’s active Twitter account of nearly 12 million followers.

TIME reports that Bon Jovi’s Chinese concerts’ organizers were attempting to convince the Culture Ministry of the People’s Republic of China to reconsider the move to cancel the concerts, but it does not appear at this time that Bon Jovi’s status in China is likely to change.