There is a current Chinese saying:
Translation: “Not afraid of Godlike opponents, only afraid of pig-like team-mates”
meaning: Your success (or failure) does not necessarily depend on the strength of your opponents/rivals, but also on the strength (or weakness) of your own team.
In an earlier post 神級偶像, 豬的團隊, we called PSH 神級偶像, that is, Godlike idol. We think PSH is nonpareil in the entire Korean entertainment world. No other actor can hold a candle to him. In a field saturated with 小鮮肉 (little fresh meat = very young artists – new, green, raw), which spring up by the dozen practically every month in Korea, PSH can still hold his own and is in a class by himself.
Every time PSH lands in the last 10 of a voting contest — the elimination kind — we feel elated, of course, but also a little embarrassed because he is invariably the oldest of the lot. The other finalists are all 10, even 20, years younger than he. So? He’s a late bloomer. Never forget it took him 10 long, hard years to gain recognition in the Korean entertainment world.
We remember when PSH was still with EYAGI, even though he was the management agency’s No.1 actor, we felt they’re not managing his career properly, so that he’s not getting as many roles to showcase his acting talents as he should have. In his last year with EYAGI, they were practically “freezing” him in 2012 (possibly because of a contractual dispute.) We suspect EYAGI was trying to force PSH to re-sign on their terms.
When PSH went on the catwalk for Yumi Katsura’s wedding fashion in Tokyo in February 2012, we were very gratified he posted some photos of himself on the show on Twitter — between shows. And then (delayed reaction) we were shocked and outraged. PSH was doing 3 shows in one day, and he had to post photos on the web by himself?! What was his management agency for?
For the rest of 2012, EYAGI just let PSH idle his time away. The Chinese project “Poor Boy Makes It Rich” came to nothing. The music video in Thailand was aborted halfway. We cursed EYAGI for their ineptitude. How come they could not cast PSH in a Korean drama?
It wasn’t until December 2012 that PSH got to star in “Cheongdam-dong Alice” which was such a resounding success. Just when it looked like nothing could stop him from reaching his pinnacle as an actor, that terrible incident happened on Valentine night, 2013. If EYAGI’s H really did what many people thought he did to ruin PSH (because he would not renew his contract), he is not a pig (stupid) but a poisonous snake (dangerous, treacherous). He took away 3 years of PSH’s life and set back his career by 10 years.
We admire so much PSH’s resilience and courage and his never-say-die attitude. We were so happy when he set up his own management agency Hoo Factory. Now at long last he did not have to be beholden to any boss; he could do what he wanted. But then a company is only as good as its staff, and when it’s small and inexperienced and does not have clout, it won’t make much headway in Korea.
So they were wise to look elsewhere, to find an oblique way for PSH to make his comeback in Korea — making movies in China (whatever happened to LAL?), holding fan meetings in Japan and China (oops! that one was aborted in late 2014) …. The CFM eventually materialized as the Shanghai Fan Meeting in February 2015, but from all reports, it left much to be desired. NOT PSH’s performance, which was always top-notch, but the organization and logistics management.
Fast forward to November 2015. Well, we don’t even want to mention that event. We would just like to say (what we’ve said more than once before) that if PSH really wants to break into the China market in a big way, he must hire a good, reputable Chinese agent. Every country has its own culture and its own way of doing business. Some people say it’s very difficult to do business in China, that you need connections, but someone we know (who’s been doing business in China for close to 20 years) tells us that doing business in China is like doing business anywhere in the world, that you need to build up mutual respect and trust, and of course, negotiate with your eyes wide open and read all the fine print on the contract. It is NOT true that they cheat or take advantage of you, he says, more often than not it’s give-and-take. They’re willing to pay big money if you’re worth it, but of course, it’s business and they expect to make money.
PSH may be Godlike and awe-inspiring in his acting (we’ve said more than once he’s the best Korean actor of his generation), but if he is surrounded by second-rate people, he is bound to be bogged down. In the course of shooting “Neighborhood Hero”, there’s not a single photo posted by HF or PSH’s official websites. We had to go to his co-stars’ Twitter/Instagram/Facebook to find the crumbs. We wish to make his long-awaited return to Korean drama a trail of blazing glory, but his associates are not helping at all.
Just saw this on the Weibo of Chinese model Jadie who wrote on November 21:
“Saw my CF with Park Si Hoo in Korea”
This is a Chinese posting on a Chinese website. Are the Koreans not aware of this PSH CF? Some Chinese fans discovered the shop selling this brand a while ago and they even posted the address (which we posted earlier). We would have thought his Korean fans would have descended on the shop in droves and cleaned out everything from the shelves (as the Chinese fans did with PSH’s skincare products), but nothing?
Is PSH fighting a one-man battle? Of course not! We are here every day (even in the midst of overwhelming personal problems) to cheer him on. We want to make sure he makes his comeback in style, and when he is in his rightful place again, we can call it a day. But there’s only so much (or so little) that we can do. We call upon his compatriots and especially those in an official capacity to do their utmost for this peerless actor. Because HE’S WORTH IT!
(Credits: www.weibo.com; PSH photo from Instagram. Thanks!)