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Actress Han So-hee confirms breakup


Just two weeks following K-drama actress Han So-hee and fellow Korean actor Ryu Jun-yeol’s public announcement of their relationship on March 16, their respective agencies announced their breakup on March 30.

“There was a lot of controversy throughout the entire relationship, so I did not think the breakup was very sudden,” Ellen Park (10), K-drama fan, said. “A lot of people on social media were speculating about their breakup before it was even announced.”

The two actors met in November 2023 when Han attended Ryu’s photo exhibition, “A Wind Runs Through It and Other Stories.” Their first meeting occurred less than a month after Ryu’s breakup with Korean actress Lee Hyeri after seven years of dating. Dating rumors about Han and Ryu surfaced when the two were seen together in Hawaii in March.

The two actors’ relationship began shortly after Ryu and Lee Hyeri’s breakup, leading many netizens to speculate that Han had played a role in this breakup. This led to Ryu and Han receiving criticism on social media platforms such as Instagram, with users leaving comments such as “he is such a coward” and “you should be canceled.”

“I think this breakup was more controversial than most other celebrity breakups or dating rumors because it involved Ryu’s ex-girlfriend, Hyeri,” Dyne Kim (10), K-pop fan, said. “There was a subtle social media feud between Hyeri and Han, which I believe caused problems between the two. That, along with a lot of fans saying that Ryu was moving on too fast from Hyeri, is why there is drama surrounding the couple.”

In response to the criticism, Han expressed her frustration on social media, asking fans why she was receiving so many negative comments, saying, “I just want to ask why you hate me…It seems people want me to explain some parts and want me to stay silent on others. I am not sure what people want from me. I am writing this because I don’t think I should respond with silence.” Han later received support from some fans who defended her by questioning the motives behind the criticism she was receiving. 

Lee Hyeri also issued an apology for her involvement in the controversy, expressing, “I sincerely apologize for the groundless rumors and controversies that arose due to my personal feelings over the past few days. I didn’t expect my trivial actions to cause such a big issue. I sincerely apologize to those who have been harmed by my actions.”

The two actors’ controversial relationship mirrors other Korean celebrity breakups, which resulted in Korean actors losing brand deals or work opportunities. For instance, Korean actor Ahn Jae-hyun’s 2019 divorce from actress Koo Hye-sun led to brands such as Giordano and Merbliss discontinuing their deals with the actor. In this case, Han and Ryu were reportedly dropped from their upcoming film project “Hyun Hok” as a result of the scandal.

“I think that in Korea there is a strong feeling of possessiveness that fans have over their celebrities,” Angela Campbell, K-drama and K-pop enthusiast, said. “They feel much more entitled to chime in on people’s appearance, dress choices, and more, and I feel like that is a very stifling atmosphere for those celebrities. I think that discourages idols from having relationships, at least publicly.”

Han and Ryu’s agencies announced the two actors’ decision to focus on acting instead of their personal matters moving forward.

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About the Contributor
Grace Lee
Grace Lee, Reporter
Grace is a sophomore reporter for Tiger Times. She is interested in literature, loves watching soccer games with her parents, and listens to pop music during her free time. Feel free to approach her with book recommendations or anything else!

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