Hallyu actor Lee Byung-hun to appear on CNN’s ‘Talk Asia’
Last year, Lee starred as Storm Shadow in Stephen Sommers’ action flick “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra” and played the lead character in the KBS television drama “Iris.”
Iris, which ended its first season on Dec. 17, was a hit here and topped the ratings with an audience share of close to 40 percent. It will be shown in seven Asian countries including Japan, where Lee has a legion of fans.
Lee’s turn in G.I. Joe, which is reported to have grossed over $300 million worldwide, brought him international recognition. He has already signed on to appear in the sequel, which is reported to begin shooting in the second half of the year. But Lee nearly threw the opportunity away, as a press release containing excerpts from the interview revealed.
“When I first heard about G.I. Joe from my agent, I didn’t know what it was,” he said. “I refused the offer at first. But everyone told me to do it and said it was a huge opportunity.
“One of my very good friends, Park Chan-wook, who made ‘Oldboy,’ said to me, ‘If you really want to go to Hollywood, why don’t you do it? It will be a very good opportunity.’”
Lee’s year has not passed without drama. He and his ex-girlfriend traded a spate of accusations in a very public scandal that damaged his reputation and resulted in a lawsuit.
Talk Asia accompanies Lee onto the red carpet at the opening night of the 14th Pusan International Film Festival in October, and follows him to the Iris set.
The program featuring Lee will be aired on Jan. 20, followed by several reruns on the network. After the first broadcast, it will also be available online at www.cnn.com/talkasia.
By Park Sun-young [email@example.com]