Relations between China and South Korea have been frosty due to shifts in East Asian geopolitics in recent years. China enforced a Korean ban which deeply impacted the Hallyu wave in China. The four big South Korean entertainment companies lost $300 million US dollars and at least 30 television dramas and 20 artistes were impacted. With South Korean sentiment in China still sensitive, Angelababy was unfortunately caught in the controversy.
In 2017, South Korea installed a missile battery employing the United States’ Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system in response to nuclear and missile threats from North Korea. China argued that the advanced system would also allow the US to track China’s airspace and positioning of military hardware. It has been some time since the incident and many thought that it was water under the bridge. However, recent events in the entertainment industry have proven that it is far from over.
Recently, Angelababy was spotted watching South Korean girl group BLACKPINK’s concert in Hong Kong and Macau. The actress was criticized for supporting South Korea and being unpatriotic to China. Allegedly, her actions may have caused her current drama Twilight <暮色心約> to be pulled from broadcast and sent for re-approval with the censorship committee. No decision has been made yet.
Despite the political tensions between China and South Korea, the appeal of Korean artistes remain strong. A large number of Chinese websites continue streaming pirated copies of Korean dramas with Chinese subtitles. Former Girls’ Generation member, Jessica Jung, also appeared in variety show Sisters Who Make Waves 3 in 2022. However, this may have been the exception as it is still considered risky to feature Korean celebrities in Chinese productions due to the government’s disposition.
CNBLUE lead singer Jung Yonghwa was originally supposed to participate in Chinese music competition show Struggling Freshman Class <奮鬥！新生一班> and had already arrived in Beijing to prepare for the start of filming. However within 72 hours, he was sent back home! It was said that there were Chinese netizens who reported that a South Korean artiste had arrived in China and the production team folded under the pressure. They removed him from the cast to ensure that the show would not be banned from broadcast.
This article is written by Kiki for JayneStars.com.