In today’s Korean television and film industry, actors like Lee Min Ho (Heirs), Kim Soo Hyun (Producer), and Park Shin Hye (Pinocchio) are dominating the scene. Their professionalism, along with their young ages, are a combination many directors and producers find appealing. However, their paths were paved due to more seasoned actors who were part of K-dramas and K-movies during the initial spark of the Hallyu Wave. Ha Ji Won (The Time Were Were Not In Love), Kim Na Ra (Fated to Love You), and Jang Hyuk (Successful Story of a Bright Girl) are just a few.
However, there is one actress who stands out from the rest when it comes to the initiation of the Hallyu Wave, and she is Song Hye Kyo. In 2000, she played the female lead in Autumn in My Heart, the K-drama recognized for pioneering Korean melodramatic series. Now, Hye Kyo is back in Korean entertainment news for her role in upcoming drama Descendants of the Sun. A lot of eyes are on her, so it was no surprise the media took notice when Hye Kyo bought a second home worth $7.5 million. The purchase, however, would cause netizens to be critical of the star who not too long ago was entrenched in a scandal for alleged tax evasion.
The 1st pic is Song Hye-kyo's recently bought house and the 2nd pic is Rain's old house which he sold in 2015… pic.twitter.com/lGBOrGn7Fk
— 비 (@lovemesome_rain) February 8, 2016
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The news broke of Song Hye Kyo purchasing a second home on Korean news outlet Sports Seoul. According to their report, the luxury home is located in the upscale Seoul district of Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, a neighborhood considered Korea’s equivalent to Beverly Hills in California. The 1,883 square-foot, three-story home is also the former residence of the president of Dong-A Pharmaceutical. However, the home is technically not for Song Hye Kyo. It is for her mother, as detailed by a local officer who provided a statement on the real estate purchase.
“Miss Song recently proceeded with purchasing another house in Samseong-dong, in addition to the house where she was originally living. I know that it was purchased for her mother and the original price was $9 billion KRW.”
Just so it is clear, $9 billion KRW is about $7.5 million USD. That sounds like a huge chunk of change, but with over a decade of starring roles in K-movies and K-dramas in her repertoire, Song Hye Kyo probably has more than enough to cover such a cost. And, if her current assets cannot cover it, her pay from the upcoming drama Descendants of the Sun will most likely take care of it.
There is one issue that has risen from Song Hye Kyo purchasing a second home and it is related to a scandal she was a part of in 2014. According to KdramaStars, Hye Kyo was the central figure in tax evasion allegations after an investigation by the Seoul Tax Service. They determined that Hye Kyo could not provide supporting documentation for about $2.5 billion KRW (about $2 million USD) in earnings between 2009 and 2011. Because of this past mistake, Korean netizens were very critical of Song Hye Kyo purchasing a second home.
“So, she has enough to buy a 9 billion won house but didn’t have 2.5 billion won to pay her taxes?”
What these netizens fail to realize is that Song Hye Kyo already paid the taxes she owed. This fact was provided by a legal representative back in August 2014, the time when the scandal hit the news outlets.
Song Hye-kyo buys $7m house in Seoul https://t.co/aI504jlfOt
— Inquirer Group (@inquirerdotnet) February 6, 2016
“Song Hye Kyo has paid all original as well as additional taxes arising from the tax investigation two years ago. However, she is still deeply reflecting on her mistakes. In the future, she will take care not to let the same thing happen again, and we ask for your understanding.”
Right now, Song Hye Kyo is concentrating on her acting duties for the upcoming K-drama, Descendants of the Sun. It will air between February 24 and April 14 on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 10 p.m. KST on the Korean Broadcasting System channel KBS2. For certain regions outside of Korea, it can be viewed for free (with ads) on DramaFever.
[Image via Descendants of the Sun Official Poster]