There was a rumor that Kim Hyun Joong made a remarkable improvement in popularity because of his leading role in the band SS501 and his previous drama “Boys over Flowers” both moved into the entertainment industry in Japan. That rumor turned out to be true. Recently, he made an exclusive contract with ‘Keyeast’ which is operated by Bae Yong Joon, and it’s said that he is getting more gifts in Keyeast than Yonsama. It’s the first time since the company was founded that Bae Yong Joon was not the leading receiver of gifts. However, Bae Yong Joon is happy that he was able to sign Kim Hyun Joong.
“Yong Joon hyeong (suehan: big brother) and I often chat about relationships with women while having drinks.”
Kim Hyun Joong was selected as the next generation Hallyu star since he became popular in the Asian market, including Japan. And then, the original Hallyu star Bae Yong Joon picked him around the time when his contract with his previous agency was about to expire sometime last June. He became Yonsama’s man. He considers Yonsama as his role model. I was wondering how he thinks about the president, Bae Yong Joon. He called Bae Yong Joon as “Yong Joon hyeong” without hesitation when he was asked about their relationship.
“Frankly I was nervous when I met him the first time. His power and status was so strong when he got out of his car. I thought I was looking at the demigods like the King or Zeus. He isn’t a type of person who goes around puffed up or shows off, but I might have felt intimidated by his name “Yonsama”. After we exchanged a few words, I realized that “Ah.. He is a human being like me”. Now I think of him as a brother in the neighborhood.”
Bae Yong Joon makes a mythical impression like he doesn’t get along with people or he refrains himself from the outside world. But it’s said that he is just not noticed. He is a busy bee and is comfortable with his friends.
There is a fourteen years age difference between the two of them. They communicate and get along very well even though their age difference represents that of an uncle – nephew relationship. Recently, Bae Yong Joon and he, only the two of them, have been together about two or three times a week. They chat comfortably about the usual life stories, not dramas or albums, while they drink a coffee and green tea.
Bae Yong Joon is a major shareholder of his agency; Kim Hyun Joong is a new face who Bae Yong Joon signed enthusiastically. In other words, they have a “president” and “a competent new employee” relationship. But Kim Hyun Joong said, “Looking at him from the side, Bae Yong Joon is easygoing, different than I had expected. He feels uncomfortable about the nickname which was given to him by the media. He becomes serious (?) by saying, “Don’t’ mess around with my name. Say my real name” when his friends make a telephone call and say “Hi, Yonsama”.
“I just call him Yong Joon hyeong. I can’t call him ‘the president’ or ‘Yonsama’. I can’t call him Ahjeossi (suehan; It means middle-aged man) either (laugh). I have a very comfortable relationship with him. We talk about our problems and we chat for hours easily. Sometimes, we get excited about pretty girls when we’re drinking. We talk about old girlfriends as well. We’re just like other men.”
He took over the cosmetic brand, ‘The Face Shop’, advertisement where Bae Yong Joon worked as a model. The photos and concepts of the advertisement give off a similar image that of Bae Yong Joon’s. This coming December, he will go to Japan with Bae Yong Joon for a stage appearance. It seems that his agency is operating ‘the little Yonsama project’ a bit intentionally. But Bae Yong Joon doesn’t coach him. “He doesn’t direct me to do this and that, every detail. I just watch him on the side and learn what I need from him when it is necessary.
Hyeong is very thorough in his self-management. He’s never shown a weak appearance to others. I try to take after his qualtiies. Aside from taking after him I think the expression of ‘Little Yonsama’ is too overestimated. I’ve never encountered the fans even after the events in Japan because I have only stayed in the hotel. So, I’m not sure whether I’m popular or not. Are you asking me why the fans like me? Hmm.. Because, I’m cute (laugh)”