7:45 pm - 05/22/2019

Apink’s Jung Eun Ji Speaks Candidly About Prejudice Against Idol Actors

Apink’s Jung Eun Ji shared her thoughts on the difficulties idols face in gaining recognition for their acting ability.

On May 22, Jung Eun Ji sat down with Joy News 24 for an interview ahead of the release of her movie “0.0MHz.”

The new horror film is based off a webtoon of the same name and tells the story of the strange events that befall the members of a supernatural mystery club when they enter an abandoned house seeking evidence of a radio frequency that calls ghosts.

In her first role in a feature film, Jung Eun Ji plays So Hee, who has had the ability to see ghosts since she was young. Born into a family of shamans, she tried to suppress her ability, but due to its immense power, she ends up chasing ghosts with the members of the 0.0MHz club.

With regards to her intense role, Jung Eun Ji commented, “People tend to think of idols as having a bright image, so I had a lot of concerns. I think I was able to show a new side of myself through this project.

When asked if she felt burdened as an idol actor, she replied, “There was some [burden]. Actors are considered actors because they started with acting, but for idols who act, even if they’re good, they become ‘the greatest idol actor,’ not just ‘the greatest actor.'” She added, “[ZE:A’s] Im Siwan has transitioned to being an actor, but he’s still labeled as ‘the greatest idol actor.'

She continued, “I would like for actors who started as idols to do really well and become accepted as full-fledged actors. I want to start that change. I hope that many people can make the transition and succeed. I’m cheering for myself, but I’m also cheering for others.

“0.0MHz” premieres in Korean theaters on May 29.

Source: Joy News 24 via Soompi
goshipgurl 23rd-May-2019 12:21 am (UTC)
I mean, is she really surprise? There are so many idol actors out there that suck. And I think "idol actor" it the right word for it when you want to act but still have a career as an idol singer.
daynr 23rd-May-2019 02:09 am (UTC)
But if you don't suck, and aren't really an idol anymore, than it does seem like a label you would aspire to transcend, because it doesn't seem to have the same weight as 'actor'.

So many of them do suck, though.
goshipgurl 23rd-May-2019 02:57 pm (UTC)
In her case, she's still a member of an idol band so..
scionofawhisper 23rd-May-2019 12:25 am (UTC)
I don't know, that seems a sort of petty thing to be hung up on, but I'm not her and don't know what it feels like. But, didn't she get the big roles *because* she was an idol? She didn't - and a lot of idols - don't have to climb the ladder from crappy small roles to big roles, they get to jump into lead roles or near lead roles right away because of their idol background. There are ton of good actors, and it's a popular job to want to have, but it's a lot of luck getting in the spotlight (and perhaps selling oneself too sadly). 'idol actor' in a way means someone who was able to leverage their popularity as an idol to jump into big roles.
lizanka23 23rd-May-2019 01:05 am (UTC)
exactly. it sounds so whoa is me, no one takes me seriously boohoo. it's actually a privilege for them though since it 's like a shortcut for them. like you said because of their popularity they get more lucrative and big roles sooner while others have to start out with smaller insignificant roles to work their way up. i still think people that joined a company to become actors shouldn't be forced to join a music group just because the company says so. sometimes that person starts to like performing but often times they never seem to enjoy performing or music and end up absent from performances most of the time while they do acting gigs. i'm assuming she joined her company to be a singer but i'm talking about other idols who obviously wanted to act and never cared about doing music

Edited at 2019-05-23 01:09 am (UTC)
skybluecotton 23rd-May-2019 01:26 am (UTC)
yup - on the other side of the equation, there are also ppl who were forced to act even though they just wanted to sing (ie. Suzy)
lizanka23 25th-May-2019 03:23 am (UTC)
oh i didn't know that about her. i really enjoy suzy's solo music so i'm glad she still has the opportunity to continue being a singer
skybluecotton 25th-May-2019 06:45 am (UTC)
i remember reading that she cried in the beginning because she didn't wanna act.
it just really stuck with me because imagine being forced to do a job you have no experience in, something you don't even wanna do and getting a backlash for it.
i think there was also an attitude controversy a while back when she won an award and ppl were made that she wasn't acting grateful enough but i think she just felt bad getting an award when she recognizes herself how limited her acting skills are.
lizanka23 26th-May-2019 05:48 pm (UTC)
That sucks. It just proves again that theses awards mostly have to do with who is most popular rather than talented, and that these companies only care about maximizing their profits instead of what would be better for the artist creatively and more fulfilling.
921227 23rd-May-2019 05:36 am (UTC)
Do you know of any current idols where that's happened?
goshipgurl 23rd-May-2019 02:59 pm (UTC)
Sohye from IOI? She wanted to be an actress but her company made her join PD101 instead
miyozari 23rd-May-2019 03:23 pm (UTC)
Eunjung and Jiyeon were originally training to become actresses. Chowon (Cube trainee from Produce 48) joined Cube, because she wanted to become an actress. Sohee wanted to quit her idol career in 2008 and focus on acting.

I'd also guess that Dasom and Junghwa rather want to act instead of sing and dance.
daynr 23rd-May-2019 02:08 am (UTC)
It seems to me that 'idol actor' is a way to distinguish that your less than a regular actor, in ability. So, while it's a valid descriptor in the beginning, but at some point, if you're perceived as good at acting, then the descriptor should change.

Or come up with a new term to describe singer/actor versus an idol singer (like, um, Better Midler or Cher or someone not a legend.)

And she may have gotten a leg up for her popularity, but there are clearly actors who got a leg up just for being pretty and, from what I've seen, aren't as good as she is.
lil_poisonfrog 23rd-May-2019 10:07 am (UTC)
I don't really watch Kdramas but this is how I feel. Judging by public perception so many idols and actors lack talent but become popular for their looks, so idg why ppl put down idols specifically. Ultimately it call comes back to disrespecting the idol profession and seeing acting as classier/superior rme

And ppl say she didn't work her way up, but like, she did??? She worked her ass off as an idol to be part of a popular group, she's not some lazy do-nothing nepotism kid or sth. If audiences don't want talentless ppl in their shows, then they need to take that up with the producers who cast based on looks/popularity; you can't blame her for seeing an opportunity to become successful and taking it
dior_chic 23rd-May-2019 01:39 pm (UTC)
but there are clearly actors who got a leg up just for being pretty

Yea that’s why I don’t really mind her complaining, since the stereotype for actors/actresses I’ve seen is it’s all about looks
921227 23rd-May-2019 03:28 pm (UTC)
//but there are clearly actors who got a leg up just for being pretty//

MTE I've watched plenty of dramas where the supporting supporting actors are young rookies that can't act their way out of a paper bag but look nice
iglooaustralia 23rd-May-2019 01:41 am (UTC)
i always assumed many idols get acting roles easier than others because they're already famous. i could be wrong though, but soo many idols have acting careers that it seems like an easy avenue for them to take
daynr 23rd-May-2019 02:03 am (UTC)
I loved her in Cheer Up, and thought she was believable, so I look forward to seeing if she can deliver in other vehicles. And if so, I hope she achieves the distinction of not having actor modified by a negative caveat.
hallyujah 23rd-May-2019 02:38 am (UTC)
I'm so glad she's speaking up about prejudice against a terribly marginalized group in society: Idol Actors. RME.
She should speak with James Charles about Influencer Representation too!
goshipgurl 23rd-May-2019 02:59 pm (UTC)
ashdevilrun23 24th-May-2019 12:50 am (UTC)
nnnnnnn james
thebloomroom 23rd-May-2019 02:55 am (UTC)
Lmao i mean a lot of them only get the gigs bc theyre idols and suck at acting. I’m sure it sucks for the rare few who will probably act full time (Im Siwan, Hyungsik, etc) but they could have worse problems lol they’re still respected as actors...
921227 23rd-May-2019 05:34 am (UTC)
Did I miss somethin? The coments are a lil harsh for what I thought was a pretty simple statement.

Most idol actors aren't the best, but I've seen plenty dramas where even actor-actors werent the best actors so it evens out to me. Its the reverse of ppl using their acting careers to release music & think thats apt
jyusou 23rd-May-2019 05:46 am (UTC)
Off topic, but I find her smile so fascinating. It's like, outwardly relaxed and easy-going, but with thinly-veiled snark because it goes up more like a smirk than a smile. Anyway, I think it makes her unique.
rightclick5ave 24th-May-2019 11:51 am (UTC)
I think she has such a nice smile! her smile has such...warmth and sincerity and it makes me feel like I wanna be friends lol
theweebdream 23rd-May-2019 11:47 am (UTC)
Lol this is the most privileged thing to complain about. Everyone else has already said what I think so I’m not gonna say anything more.
aeries_amethyst 23rd-May-2019 09:27 pm (UTC)
I do agree that there is a bias against idol actors because a lot of them really can't act...but on the flip side, there are a lot of actors who can't act either. Both of these groups of people get gigs based on looks or popularity regardless of talent.

I'm not sure what else you would call an active idol that acts outside of group activities. Idol Actor is an accurate term because that is what they are. Water is wet, the sky is blue etc. However, if you are a former idol, like with Siwan and Hyungshik or even Yoon Eun Hye, Lina and Eugene. Do they still count as idol actors?
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