Earlier this month, China initiated a new ban on Hallyu, or the Korean Wave, especially K-dramas. It was argued the ban came about after K-dramas My Love From The Stars and Descendants of the Sun dominated Chinese television within the past three years. Some of the reasons for the ban include Chinese officials claiming K-dramas surpassing the majority of C-dramas “hurts China’s culture dignity” and the Chinese people being affected, for reasons such as skipping work to watch K-dramas or suffering health-related issues through binge watching.
There are other hypothesized reasons for China’s ban on Hallyu. One reason is that it was a response to South Korea initiating the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), an anti-missile system to counter the increasing threat from North Korea’s missile program. Another reason is that China wants to further the influence of C-dramas to become the leader in Asian entertainment.
The Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) is depending on Chinese fandom to cover the lack of popularity everywhere else. Fan meetings are a great tool to bolster the fandom and Kim Woo Bin and Bae Suzy were about to have one in China too. Unfortunately, their fan meeting had to be postponed. This brings up the question of if China’s ban on Hallyu is now affecting Uncontrollably Fond?
The news was first reported by Korean news outlet Joins through a translation by HanCinema. According to the report, Chinese fans of Uncontrollably Fond (also known as Lightly, Ardently) demanded to see both Kim Woo Bin and Bae Suzy, the lead actors of the K-drama. It is even reported that the president of Hoi Group requested for the two stars to be brought to China. Unfortunately, the fan meeting that was set up had to be pushed back.
At this point, only time can tell if Kim Woo Bin and Bae Suzy’s fan meeting with Chinese fans will take place. If it does not, they will be busy with other fan meetings and post-production promotions given that Uncontrollably Fond finished filming on August 12.
Uncontrollably Fond airs on KBS on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9:55 p.m. KST. It will air simultaneously in China, North America, and South America, too. For those in China, it will stream on Youku Tudou. For North and South America, it will air one hour after the Korean airtime, for free with ads, on DramaFever, but is also available on Viki, pending region.
[Image via KBS]