Since the beginning of time, celebrities have tried to hide their dating status. Part of it was for privacy issues. But there was also a business element. Managers wanted to make it appear as if their clients were available to fans. Certainly, this holds true for K-Pop and K-Drama stars, who are forced to spend an inordinate amount of time evading questions about their love lives.
The latest “scandal” involves Kang Daniel and Twice‘s Jihyo. Like many celebrities before them, they were “outed” by media outlets like Dispatch, which published grainy photographs of the young couple on dates together in Seoul’s Hannam neighborhood. They weren’t doing anything sordid. They were just a pair of 20somethings enjoying each other’s company.
Because of their international popularity, the possibility that this rumor was real became such a trending topic that JYP Entertainment and KONNECT Entertainment — which represents Twice and Kang Daniel, respectively — felt compelled to investigate and make the following succinct announcement: “They are currently meeting with interest in each other.”
Kang Daniel even took to his website to address his fans and assure them that though he was in a relationship, he loved them very much:
I’m really sorry to everyone who may have been very surprised when they read the news this morning. I’m worried over whether I’m writing to you too late. I want to take care of the hearts of fans and it’s both my role to try to do that and what I want to do. In order to carry out that role, I will become singer Kang Daniel, who always shows you a good image, which I’ve always considered to be the most important thing.
It’s actually depressing that idols have to issue apology letters for daring to fall in love. Sometimes, it’s not even the fans who resent the talent for dating. It’s their management companies. Look what happened to HyunA and E’Dawn when the pop stars confirmed they were romantically involved. Their label, Cube Entertainment — which had insisted the musicians were just friends — freaked out and threatened to drop the pair. But cream always rises to the top. Psy signed both to his label. (Fans may remember that HyunA was the girl with the red hair in his “Gangnam Style” video.)
When it was confirmed this past January that Blackpink‘s Jennie and EXO‘s Kai were dating, the internet went crazy over this K-Pop Super Couple. Sadly, the relationship ended after just a few months, due to their busy schedules. Timing. It’s not everything, but it does play an important role.
Of course, there are some celebrities who deny their relationship almost until the day of their marriage (Song Joong-Ki and Song Hye-Kyo come to mind). But more often than not, many dating “scandals” have no actual roots in reality.
Some performers, like Super Junior‘s Heechul, are tired of being dragged through the mud every time they are photographed with a female friend. Just days after photographs of Kang Daniel and Jihyo were released, rumors circulated that her bandmate, Momo, had been romantically involved with Heechul for the past two years.
SM Entertainment, which reps, Heechul, shot down the rumors quickly. “The two are close only as co-workers in the industry.” JYP simply said the gossip was “groundless.”
Then there’s actor Lee Jong-Suk, who has been matched with almost all of his beautiful co-stars. To be perfectly honest, I was hoping that he was dating his “Pinocchio” co-star, Park Shin-Hye. But both of the actors denied any romantic aspect to their friendship. More recently, Lee was said to be involved with Kwon Nara, a former member of the group Hello Venus. The speculation began to percolate after Kwon signed with his A-MAN Project agency. Again, denials were issued. And to be fair to Lee, it would be very difficult for him to start any romance, given that he is enlisted in the South Korean military right now.
So, ‘fess up. Do you feel a bit depressed when your favorite go off the market? Or do you genuinely wish them well? Sound off in the comments below!