Tag Archives: jamie chung

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‘Big Hero 6′ Receives Golden Globe Nomination

by REERA YOO | @reeraboo
reera@iamkoream.com

Disney’s Big Hero 6 has been nominated for a Golden Globe in the category of Best Animated Feature Film.

Inspired by a Marvel comic book miniseries, Big Hero 6 follows a team of brainiacs led by 14-year-old prodigy Hiro Hamada and his huggable marshmallow-like robot, Baymax. Following a tragedy, Hiro enlists the help of his high-tech friends to hunt down a masked villain and to decipher a sinister plot that could destroy the city of San Fransokyo.

Two Korean American actors voiced supporting characters in the animated film: Daniel Henney as Hiro’s older brother, Tadashi Hamada, and Jamie Chung as the adrenaline junkie, GoGo Tomago.

Other nominees for the best animated film includes The Lego MovieHow to Train Your Dragon 2The Book of Life and The Boxtrolls.

The 72nd Golden Globe Awards will be hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler and will air live on NBC at 5 p.m (PST) on Sunday, Jan. 11. You can view all the nominees and categories here.

Photo courtesy of Disney

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LINK ATTACK: Jamie Chung, Hallyu Beauty Storm, Kim Jong Il’s Former Bodyguard

North Korean Defector: ‘I Was Kim Jong Il’s Bodyguard’
“When Kim Jong Il would arrive in his vehicle, 60- to 70-year old advisors would run away and throw themselves onto the grass. They had dust on their clothes but they wanted to hide from him,” said Lee Young-guk, who was a former body guard to the late Kim Jong Il for 10 years. “They are scared because even when he was happy he would be rude and could chop off their heads.”

Skin Care Products from South Korea Catch on in the United States
Although the beauty market has long been led by European countries, South Korean beauty products are starting to become a popular trend in the States.

Vietnamese Translation Errors Could Affect Prop. 46
“An error in translation for voter materials for Proposition 46, which would require drug and alcohol testing for physicians, could be affecting the way Vietnamese Americans vote on the measure.”

The Super Jamie Chung in Big Hero 6
KoreAm‘s sister publication Audrey Magazine interviews Jamie Chung, the voice actress behind the speed demon GoGo Tomago in Disney’s latest animated film, Big Hero 6. 

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The Odd Friendship Between North Korea and Its First American Surfers
Julie Nelson was one of the first people to ever surf in North Korean waters and led the reclusive country’s first-ever surf camp, which showed North Koreans what a surfboard looks like and even taught some locals on how to swim.

OC Korean American Voter Turnout Increased Twofold Since June
“The number of Orange County Korean American voters who participated in Tuesday’s general elections increased about twofold since June primary elections.”

Son of South Korea Ferry Owner Is Convicted of Stealing Millions
“The eldest son of the South Korean business mogul who controlled the company that ran the Sewol ferry, which sank in April, leaving more than 300 people dead, was convicted of embezzlement on Wednesday and sentenced to three years in prison.”

Asian American Horror Thriller The Unbidden Launches Kickstarter
The Unbidden follows the story of four women haunted by the ghost of a tortured man, who knows their dark secrets from their past and seeks vengeance. Starring an all Asian American cast with Tamilyn Tomita, Julia Nickson, Elizabeth Sung, Amy Hill, Jason Yee and Karin Anna Cheung, this psychological thriller delves into the issue of domestic violence and the morality of retribution.

7 Deadly Spicy Korean Ramens to Try
Think you can handle spicy food? Koreaboo lists seven of Korea’s spiciest instant noodle brands.

South Korean Monk Tends to Souls of Dead Enemy Soldiers
A South Korean Buddhist monk cares for the graves of 769 North Korean soldiers in a forgotten cemetery along the SFXI Highway that runs from Seoul to the barbed wire fences of the demilitarized zone.

Japanese Swimmer Denies Stealing Camera at Asian Games
Naoya Tomita, a Japanese swimmer who was accused of stealing a camera during the Asian Games in South Korea, denied the allegations earlier this week, stating that an unidentified male forcefully put it in his bag.

The Unbelievable Story of a Woman Who Taught North Korea’s Elite Undercover
Suki Kim, an American journalist born in South Korea, talks to Huffington Post about her surreal experience teaching at the all-male Pyongyang University of Science and Technology.

Heard in Seoul: Views on Reunification
Korea Real Time hits the streets of Seoul and asks South Koreans about their thoughts, hopes and concerns for a possible reunification with North Korea.

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A Journey to the Heart of Korean Cheese
“Imsil, in North Jeolla Province, was where Korea’s first cheese was produced in 1964 by Belgian missionary Didier Serstevens, who wanted to bring the community a sustainable income…”

South Korea Tries to Re-brand DMZ as Rare Animal Sanctuary
The South Korean government pushes for the construction of a wildlife sanctuary in the middle of the DMZ as part of a trust-building strategy between the two Koreas.

5 Most Innovative Korean Restaurants in NYC
Korean cuisine has been growing steadily popular among New York foodies. Here are five innovative Korean restaurants in NYC you don’t want to miss.

BIG HERO 6

Film Review: ‘Big Hero 6′ Charms in Predictably Disney Fashion

by GRACE KANG

Ripped straight out of the pages of Marvel Comics comes a dizzying blitzkrieg of robotic action and San Fransokyan lights, as Big Hero 6 illuminates the big screen on Nov. 7. But, while the 54th successor in the series of Walt Disney Animated Classics may borrow its title and majority of its cast from the Marvel miniseries, the film is only loosely based on the obscure comic books, which were set in Tokyo and centered on an entirely Japanese team of superheroes. For better or worse, the adapted tale, co-directed by Don Hall (Winnie the Pooh) and Chris Williams (Bolt), bears the signature of Disney and all the storytelling gimmicks that come with it, and yet the finished product is definitely anything but a mere amalgamation of clichés.

This superhero adventure follows too-cool-for-“nerd-school” Hiro Hamada (Ryan Potter), who at the ripe old age of 14 is a robotics prodigy with a penchant for illegal bot fighting. Hiro’s volatile mix of borderline criminal genius and teenage dirtbag attitude has big brother Tadashi (Daniel Henney) frequently leaping to the rescue on his Vespa. But as with many hero origin stories, our young protagonist can’t rely on the crutch of his protector forever. Tadashi takes his brother for a visit at the San Fransokyo Institute of Technology, whereupon the initially scornful Hiro becomes enamored with the stimulating, innovative environment, and especially of Tadashi’s mentor and robotics department head, Professor Robert Callaghan (James Cromwell). It is there that he is also first introduced to Tadashi’s masterwork, health care robot Baymax (Scott Adsit), who looks like a hybridized incarnation of Totoro and the Michelin Man.

BIG HERO 6Big Hero 6 is set in the fictitious San Fransokyo, a melding of San Francisco and Tokyo.

Hiro’s character development hits the ground running as he becomes motivated for the first time in years to take on new and uncertain challenges starting with the SFIT showcase, an event where promising young scientists are evaluated for a shot at admission. Modeled on his old fighting robot, Hiro presents his microbots, minute metal pieces that, with the guidance of a neurotransmitter and extensive imagination, hold “limitless applications.” Though the invention awards Hiro both the limelight and acceptance to the program, the joy of achievement is short-lived when a sudden conflagration breaks out at the showcase, resulting in the explosion that claims the lives of Professor Callaghan and Tadashi, who rushes back into the building to save the professor.

In the aftermath of the tragedy, as Hiro is left grasping at the ashes of the life he had envisioned, Baymax is activated and makes it his personal mission to “improve” Hiro’s “emotional state.” This clumsy interaction leads to the discovery of an unclear but decidedly sinister plot involving the mass production of Hiro’s previously thought-to-have-been destroyed microbots, spearheaded by a shadowy individual whose identity is concealed behind a kabuki mask. The apprehension of this figure, who is later linked to the murder of his brother, drives Hiro on a reckless path for justice and vengeance.

And though Baymax cuts an impressive bulk, here is where the rest of the team comes into action, as foils to Hiro’s journey, as well as each other’s. As friends of Tadashi and disciples of Professor Callaghan, each member of the team has a stake in the hunt for the masked villain. The ever impatient and stoic GoGo Tomago (Jamie Chung) is the first to join figurative hands with Hiro in this mission, which impels the others—Honey Lemon (Génesis Rodríguez), a vibrant sweetheart with a knack for concocting neon-hued explosions, Wasabi (Damon Wayans, Jr.), whose intelligence and sarcastic approach to thrilling heroics bears a fond resemblance to Nickelodeon predecessor Sokka (Avatar: The Last Airbender) and self-professed “science enthusiast” Fred (T.J. Miller), who aspires to become a fire-breathing lizard. This hodgepodge of quirks and temperaments adds up to a neat, Disney-stamped balance of clashes that always manage to soften into heartwarming resolution. And a large part of the film’s charm is owed to the vocal talents that roll seamlessly off the animated tongues of the cast, each actor in perfect symbiosis with his or her character.

But while Big Hero 6 boasts a visually tantalizing palette to match a charming core in the great bounds Disney can be counted on to advance in its animated features, there were places where it failed to break new ground and, in some areas, even stepped backward. It was a shame to see the writing play it safe by falling back on well-trod devices that have brought success when it comes to both Marvel universe action and Disney/Pixar “feels,” but it rang more like a well-loved neighbor and less like a whole new world of excitement. The plot strides from start to finish like a veteran actor on a stage, but in this production, the marks on the floor that shout, “Now stand here and say this,” are visible to those watching—which seems to become more and more noticeable with each step Disney takes into 3D computer animated films.

BIG HERO 6Left to right, three members of Big Hero 6’s team: GoGo Tomago (Jamie Chung), Wasabi (Damon Wayans, Jr.) and Honey Lemon (Génesis Rodríguez).

Diverging from the all-Japanese team from the original comic book series, Disney’s iteration of the Big Hero 6 team is racially varied. Several members—including the biracial lead character of Hiro, who is half Japanese—are presumably people of color, and that diversity was refreshing to see in a big studio animated film. But what’s disappointing is that there seems to be no acknowledgement of race, at least insofar as adding some depth to the characters’ backgrounds.

Nevertheless, Big Hero 6 is certain to win the audience over with a nonstop offense of some of the most likable characters the studio has presented within the last few years, and parents will likely be pleased to find that their kids are more receptive to moral lessons and health tips when they come from an adorably oversized robot.

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Hiro (Ryan Potter) and Baymax (Scott Adsit).

When Tadashi says of his creation, “He’s going to help a lot of people,” it creates a ripple effect, blurring the juxtaposition of Hiro, Tadashi and Baymax, and their roles as keeper and charge, caregiver and receiver, as well as the meaning of family, throughout the unfurling narrative. Although Disney and sister studio Pixar go heavy-handed with tug-on-your-heartstrings motifs that don’t always translate organically from screen to audience, Big Hero 6 and its interpretations of the different forms of family, from the brothers to single parent Aunt Cass (Maya Rudolph), the team and even a ginormous robot, present a simple and clean range of emotions to which viewers from all walks of life will be able to relate.

At the very least, the film is a must-see in theaters for the vicarious thrills when Baymax zooms over the exquisitely conceptualized San Fransokyo skyline. Overall the movie rolls along like an extended pilot for a series, not unlike the DC Animated Universe’s Justice League, and it appeared determined to set up distinct characters and a taste of the thriving franchise to come. By the film’s end, the audience is already anticipating the next chapter. To be continued next week, right? If only.

All images: © 2014 Disney

Here’s the trailer from Big Hero 6:

 

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Voices of Asian American Talent Featured in Disney’s ‘Big Hero 6′

by GRACE KANG

Frozen’s crystalline winter melts away beneath the San Fransokyo sun, as the same Disney team that created last year’s international blockbuster film releases its latest animated adventure, Big Hero 6, which hits theaters Nov. 7. This time, directors Don Hall and Chris Williams present a world of 3D-rendered robotics and vibrantly futuristic cityscapes as they re-envision superhero team Big Hero 6 from the Marvel Comics of the same name.

While the somewhat obscure 1998 comic featured a Japanese crime-busting team made up of seasoned secrets agents and former criminals, Big Hero 6 comes alive in this onscreen adventure as a motley team of youthful brainiacs, led by protagonist Hiro Hamada (played by Asian American actor Ryan Potter) and his huggable, supersized medical robot Baymax (Scott Adsit). When a mysterious figure poses a menace, Hiro and company are called to work through their fears, and with one another, in order to protect their home city.

KoreAm recently sat down at Disney Animation Studios in Burbank with the diverse vocal talents behind the Big Hero 6 characters, including Potter (Supah Ninjas) and Korean American actor Daniel Henney (X-Men Origins: Wolverine), who plays Tadashi, Hiro’s wise older brother and the creator of Baymax. Seated side by side, their clothes in a complementing neutral palette, hair neatly parted to the same side and donning easy grins, the actors certainly bore a brotherly vibe, as they ambled through a relaxed discussion about the range of qualities revealed in their onscreen characters.

“Tadashi, on the surface, is very laidback, which I think I am,” said Henney, to which Potter teasingly interjected, “No, you’re not!”

Big brother quickly shot back with, “Come on, you don’t make the bed at home.”

These intermittent bursts of verbal sparring drew merry brushstrokes over the picture of a close pair of siblings who have been at it for years. Henney added, “[Tadashi]’s very much sarcastic in the way he sort of gets Hiro to do the things he wants him to do. He uses sarcasm and irony, which I do a lot.”

01072001 - ryan potter, daniel henney.MOV_snapshot_01.53_[2014.10.29_10.11.06]Daniel Henny (left) and Ryan Potter, who play Tadashi and Hiro, respectively, in Big Hero 6.

In the film, the Hamada brothers are parentless, and Henney’s Tadashi plays as much a parenting role as a big brother one to Potter’s 14-year-old Hiro, who would love nothing more than to spend his days scamming underground robot fights. But Tadashi tests the limits of his little brother’s potential and imagination by introducing him to the gifted young individuals—and soon-to-be superheroes—at the San Fransokyo Institute of Technology, where Tadashi is a researcher.

Though the film packs in plenty of action, the theme of family is very much at the core of the film—with the brothers’ relationship, as well as that between Hiro and Baymax, central to that. There’s also the timeless idea of what makes a hero.

“I think sometimes we get lost in what the word ‘hero’ or ‘superhero’ is,” said Henney. “[With Tadashi] it’s just about being a good person and a good brother.”

For Potter, he said it was his character’s resolve. “When he sets his mind on something, he gets it done. That’s a trait you see in a lot of superheroes, but Hiro shows just a little bit more of that,” said the actor.

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Though Potter and Henney portray brothers onscreen, they say that it was after recording their parts for the animated film—which often has individual actors working alone in a sound booth—that their off-screen apparently dynamic kicked off.

“We’ve moved in together. We’ve actually adopted a few dogs together, we’re signing up for the local YMCA together … what? No,” Potter said, laughing. “It’s funny because we’ve been working together for a year-and-a-half now, but we haven’t. When I met [Daniel Henney] for the first time, I was like, man, there’s Tadashi. Daniel is Tadashi.”

Henney affirmed, “We met at dinner, and it just felt like we were meant to have played these parts. It felt right, like we had a connection, for sure.”

Big Hero 6‘s directors have said that every cast member seemed perfectly matched for their roles. Rounding out the diverse cast are Jamie Chung (Once Upon a Time), who plays surly speed demon GoGo Tomago; Damon Wayans, Jr. (Let’s Be Cops), who plays high-strung perfectionist Wasabi; Génesis Rodríguez (The Last Stand), who is the brilliant and bubbly Honey Lemon; and T.J. Miller (How To Train Your Dragon), who voices part-time mascot/full-time nerd Fred. Maya Randolph also stars in the film as Aunt Cass, who has been the Hamada brothers’ guardian after the death of their parents.

“When you simply look at the cast, you see how diverse the cast is,” said Potter. “And the diversity onscreen is something we haven’t seen before [in an animated film].”

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Another never-before-seen feature from Disney is the combined use of innovative lighting and character-generation software, Hyperion and Denizen respectively, which were incorporated in the realization of the fictitious setting of San Fransokyo, a melding of Tokyo (where the original comic took place) and San Francisco.

Cast member and San Francisco native Jamie Chung marveled at the hybrid city’s design. “The script briefly describes the city, but I had zero idea the detail and how colorful and beautiful it really became,” said the Korean American actress. “I love the attention to all of the San Francisco landmarks—you have the Transamerica building, the Golden Gate Bridge and Treasure Island and Broadway Street and Little Tokyo.”

Chung also had high praise for her animated alter ego GoGo Tomago, who functions as the silent backbone of the Big Hero 6 team. “She’s a woman that believes that actions speak louder than words. She’s kind of the first one really to step up and try to convince the guys that they should turn into Big Hero 6,” she said.

 

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Despite the unique array of teen heroes like Hiro and Gogo Tomago featured in the film, Chung predicted Baymax will likely steal the spotlight and that kids will soon be clamoring over toys created in the inflatable nurse robot’s likeness. “I think everyone [will want] Baymax. It’s the one that everyone wants, but there’s only like two in the batch, and it just drives you crazy,” she said, as she clenched her firsts to emphasize her zeal. (We’re unsure of whether for candy or cute robots.)

On a more serious note, Potter, who is of half-Japanese descent, expressed his excitement over the opportunity to portray a Disney protagonist who is also half-Japanese. “If you’re going to call the United States the melting pot of the world, you’re going to need films and television to represent that,” he said. “All the mixed-race kids are going to be able to see this film and go, ‘Wow, I see myself up there.’”

Here’s a peek at Big Hero 6, which hits theaters Nov. 7.

All images: © 2014 Disney

 

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Jamie Chung And Daniel Henney Cast In Disney’s ‘Big Hero 6′

by JAMES S. KIM

No strangers to kicking butt, Jamie Chung and Daniel Henney have joined cast of Disney and Marvel’s upcoming animated action-comedy, Big Hero 6, which hits theaters Nov. 7. Directors Don Hall and Chris Williams unveiled the young superhero team yesterday.

Big Hero 6 is set in the fictional San Fransokyo, a metropolis where underground robot fights are all the rage. Hiro Hamada (voiced by Ryan Potter), a 14-year-old robotics prodigy, and his robot Baymax (Scott Adsitt) must join forces with a group of inexperienced crime-fighting “techie heroes” when they uncover a dangerous plot.

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Chung voices GoGo Tomago, who is described as a “laconic Clint Eastwood type” who can take care of herself. An industrial engineering student, Go Go developed a bike with magnetic-levitation technology, which also made its way into her super-suit.

Henney voices Tadashi Hamada, the older brother of Hiro, who is heavily involved in the underground bot fights. Tadashi, fortunately, helps inspire Hiro to put his smarts to good use and gain admission to the San Fransokyo Institute of Technology, where he meets a robot named Baymax (voiced by Scott Adsitt). Together, they join forces with the four others to complete the crucial mission.

The team includes Fred (T.J. Miller), a big sci-fi and comic book geek whose “Fredzilla” creature suit is a homage to Godzilla. Honey Lemon (Genesis Rodriguez) is a chemistry student who is a bit geeky, but her sweet personality, positive attitude, and smarts make her a valuable member of the team. Wasabi (Damon Wayans Jr.) sports plasma-induced lasers that come out of his arms, but he’s very cautious about how to go about being a superhero-until he learns to embrace the crazy that comes with the job.

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Images via USA Today

Ken Jeong

Korean Americans On TV: Who’s In And Who’s Out?

Farewell, Señor Chang. Photo via NBC 

Wondering whether or not you’ll see your favorite Korean American faces on screen this season? Here’s a rundown of which of their shows got the green light—and which ones got the boot.

Sniff! Here are the shows that have been cancelled:   

The Neighbors: The aliens are moving out of New Jersey. Tim Jo, who plays the extraterrestrial Reggie Jackson on the ABC comedy, will have has his last laugh as the show ends after its second season. In a KoreAm interview, he said, “There’s no doubt that the world is getting more accustomed to seeing minority faces on screen.” We doubt this funny man will stay off the screen for very long.

The Tomorrow People: With the foresight of their telepathic abilities, you’d think that The Tomorrow People saw this one coming. Unfortunately, the superhuman cast of the CW Network sci-fi series is being transported back to the future, including Korean American actor Aaron Yoo, who played Russell Kwon, one of the leading roles.

Community: The spunky Ken Jeong will see his last days as Ben Chang, the pesky, peculiar, and totally endearing character on NBC’s cult comedy, Community. While the threat of cancellation loomed over the show in previous seasons like a dark cloud, the network will finally lay down the ax after five seasons. Ken Jeong tweeted, “A most heartfelt THANK YOU to all the Community fans. I LOVE YOU SO MUCH. My life is so blessed because you’re all in it. Chang The World.”

Believe: Jamie Chung’s days as Janice Channing on NBC’s drama Believe were cut short. The KA actress doesn’t seem too fazed, though. Receiving critical acclaim for her roles as Eden in the eponymous film and Mulan in ABC’s Once Upon a Time, Chung has a lot to believe in.

Growing Up Fisher: NBC’s American sitcom will be cancelled after its first season, despite the efforts of 13-year-old Lance Lim, who played Runyen. Three days before the show was cancelled, Lim posted on his Facebook page, “We really need all the viewers on this one so please please please watch tonights episode of Growing Up Fisher, again at 9:30 on NBC! 1 view really counts so even if you can’t watch it just turn the tv on at NBC! thanks guys!”

Intelligence: You’d think that any show starring the husky voice and the chiseled features of Josh Holloway would grace our screens forever. Sad to say, CBS will cancel the cyber-themed television series after only one season. Will Yun Lee had a recurring role.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. You can still catch your fave KA TV actors on these shows, which have been renewed. 

Once Upon a Time: Who is this girl I see, staring straight back at me? Jamie Chung, that’s who. As mentioned above, Chung will continue her role as Mulan in ABC’s Once Upon a Time as the show moves forward with its fourth season.

Modern Family: There’s no way ABC will cancel a show that features the most adorable, spunkiest little girl on television. We’re talking about Aubrey Anderson Emmons, who plays Lily Tucker-Pritchett on Modern Family. Little known fact: Emmons is the daughter of South Korean adoptee and comedian Amy Anderson and radio host Kent Emmons.

The 100: Speaking of Korean adoptees, actor and fellow adoptee Christopher Larkin will continue his role as the endearing delinquent, Monty Green, on the CW Network’s The 100. When KoreAm spoke with Larkin before the show premiered, he spoke passionately about representing Asian Americans on screen while trying to avoid stereotypical Asian roles. We’re glad that Larkin still has the chance to show us what he’s made of

The Mentalist: Surprise—Tim Kang is back as Special Agent Kimball Cho in another season of The Mentalist. Despite a series of low ratings in the sixth season, the CBS drama made the cut. Kang tweeted, “Thank you, everyone, for all your support! Seriously, couldn’t have gotten a Season 7 without you. Looking forward to it!!”

Grey’s Anatomy: There’s no rest for the weary: wrapping up its tenth season, the cast of Grey’s Anatomy will move on to its 11th season. Operations will resume at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital but without one pivotal character: Sandra Oh. Read all about Oh’s decision to move on from her groundbreaking role as Dr. Cristina Yang in the latest issue of KoreAm. And see her before she scrubs in for the final time—Oh’s final episode airs tomorrow.

There’s also some fresh meat coming in on the ABC network—John Cho will play an arrogant, successful marketing expert in his new sitcom Selfie. Rex Lee, who starred in Entourage and in the recently cancelled show Suburgatory, will explore a new role as a high-strung, metrosexual publicist in an upcoming comedy, Young & Hungry.

And last but not least—and at last!—ABC filled one more slot with an unprecedented sitcom that focuses on an Asian American family. Based on food personality Eddie Huang’s memoir, Fresh Off the Boat will feature Hudson Yang, Randall Park, and Constance Wu.

Tuesday's Link Attack: Jamie Chung, Marja Vongerichten, Megan Lee

Off-duty firefighter tried to save victim in tree accident
Daily Pilot (Costa Mesa, Calif.)

Off-duty Newport Beach Battalion Chief Todd Knipp was waiting for his son in an orthodontist’s office when someone burst in and said a tree fell on a car across the corner.

Knipp told those around him to call 911 and raced downstairs to the scene at 17th Street and Irvine Avenue.

“First thing I did was check to see if there was immediately a problem with the driver and then check to see how many victims or patients we’d have in the car,” Knipp said. “My first thought was given the time of day and location that I was just praying there wasn’t any kids in the car.”

There were no children inside the blue 2002 Hyundai. But 29-year-old Haeyoon Miller, a childhood musical prodigy who lived in Tustin with her boyfriend, was trapped in the coupe beneath the 50-foot blue gum eucalyptus that officials later said weighed 10 tons.

WTF: Jamie Chung’s Chinese Accent in the Upcoming Film “Premium Rush”
8Asians

Jamie Chung in a leading role opposite Joseph Gordon-Levitt? At least that’s what Slashfilm was predicting for the upcoming film Premium Rush: “Chung would play Levitt’s ex-girlfriend, ‘a fellow daredevil bike messenger who helps him outwit the cop.’” It seemed exciting enough that Chung was rising from the ranks of being a borderline reality star to actually appearing in legitimate cinema and, finally, a co-starring role with one of young Hollywood’s big names. But a few days ago, when the trailer for Premium Rush finally dropped, we saw something different: Chung was now playing a Chinese girl with broken English who gets caught in the crossfire.

The Kimchi Chronicles’ Marja Vongerichten on Korean American Cooking
Women’s Health

“Korean food is very healthy on the whole,” Marja says. Plus, “a lot of recipes are versatile enough to substitute ingredients. For instance, you could use the Bulgogi marinade on chicken or fish instead of beef.” Easy, right?

Women’s Health: What’s the number-one rule of cooking Korean dishes?
Marja: The number one rule is taste, taste, taste as you go. Most Korean cooks don’t measure, so tasting is essential.

YG Entertainment and Ludacris announce collaboration for ‘Soul By Ludacris’ headphones
allkpop

A press conference was held on Sept. 20 at the Seoul Plaza Hotel to commemorate the agreement between YG Entertainment, American company ‘Signeo‘, and Soul and Media Group. Ludacris himself also made a visit and promoted his ‘Soul by Ludacris’ headphones, which will soon be available in Korea.

[ad#graphic-square]

Prominent pastor faces probe over alleged embezzlement
Yonhap

Rev. Cho Yong-gi, the founder of one of the world’s largest Christian churches, may face an investigation by prosecutors over allegations that he and his family embezzled large amounts of church funds, church elders said Tuesday.

A group of 29 elders at Yeouido Full Gospel Church in Seoul filed a suit Monday against Cho and his first son Cho Hee-jun, the former CEO of the church-affiliated local daily Kookmin Ilbo, accusing them of misappropriating over 20 billion won (US$ 17.4 million) of church funds for speculative stock market investment.

6 best tapas in Seoul
CNNgo

Given Korea’s love affair with small plates, it should thus come as no surprise that Seoul’s affinity for banchan has carried over into a hunger for tapas.

In recent months, the Spanish specialties have spread across the city faster than you can say “¿Que pasa?”

Bursting with flavors from the tongue-tingling saltiness of anchovies to the piquant sharpness of Manchego cheese, tapas at these eateries prove they’re tops around town.

Michelle Le’s remains identified
Los Angeles Times

Police said Tuesday morning that human remains found in an Alameda County canyon are those of missing nursing student Michelle Le. Le, who was raised in San Diego County, went missing May 27 after she left a Hayward hospital where she had been training.

A woman who went to high school with Le in San Diego, Giselle Esteban, was arrested last week in connection with Le’s disappearance.

The remains were identified by the Alameda County coroner’s office, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Esteban had been a person of interest in the investigation, authorities said, because she had blamed Le for ruining her relationship with her boyfriend, the father of Esteban’s child.

Chinese Journalist Following ‘Gutter Oil’ Scandal Is Found Dead
New York Times

A Chinese journalist reporting on a scandal surrounding illegal cooking oil was found stabbed to death this week, the journalism advocacy group Reporters Without Borders said on Tuesday.

The reporter, Li Xiang, was stabbed more than 10 times as he returned to his home in the city of Luoyang on Monday, the official English-language China Daily reported.

Mr. Li had been following the story of restaurants illegally recycling cooking oil, a dangerous health hazard to diners, and had written about it on his personal blog before his death. Though he had never published any reports for his employer, Luoyang Television, news reports cited Chinese bloggers who said his death was likely connected to his investigation of the oil scandal.

Megan Lee “DESTINY” [Official Music Video]
YouTube

Check out the latest video for YouTube sensation Megan Lee. Gotta love her spunk!

Jamie Chung To Star in Indie Film About Human Trafficking

Jamie Chung is set to star in the upcoming indie drama Eden, about a Korean American girl forced into prostitution by human trafickers, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

The “gritty” film, based on a true story, will also star Scoot McNairy (Monsters) and will be directed by Megan Griffiths, director of The Off Hours. The story is by Richard B. Phillips and Chong Kim and Phillips and Griffiths co-wrote the screenplay.

Throughout the two years she is held, she ensures her own survival by carving out power and influence within the very organization that has imprisoned her.

Chung is currently shooting Knife Fight along with Rob Lowe.

She has Columbia’s Premium Rush, a thiller in which he appears opposite Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Michael Shannon, in the can, as well as Man with the Iron First.