Famed director Kim Ki Duk was previously charged with assaulting and coercing an actress into a sex scene. He was fined for the assault, but the sexual harassment charges were dismissed. Meanwhile, frequent collaborator actor Jo Jae Hyun was accused of sexual harassment and subsequently released an apology for multiple transgressions over his 30 years as an actor. Now, in a report by ‘PD Notebook‘, both are accused of sexual assault.
One of the accusers was the actress who made the original claim of abuse and sexual harassment.
In an interview on the show, the actor said she was called into Kim’s room while working on the film, where Kim was persistent in demanding that the two have sex despite her refusal. Kim described having a sexual relationship as the “trust” between the filmmaker and the actor, according to her. When she tried to get other victims and witnesses to testify on her behalf, they refused in fear of the influence Kim has in the film industry.
Another actress detailed her experience with the director, but also made a point that her company didn’t care when she told them.
Another actor told the show about the inappropriate comments the director made while working with him. “[During a meeting with Kim at a cafe,] he asked me whether he saw my breasts during the audition, and asked to see them. He also told me that he imagined that my breasts looked like peaches, and asked about the color of my nipples,” she said in the interview. He also asked her what she thought the shape and size of Kim’s penis was. Pretending to go to bathroom, the actor ran away from the meeting. [When I told my then-agency about what happened], the company seemed to care more about the fact that I was no longer appearing in Kim’s film, instead of what I had experienced.”
Yet another acftress said that both Kim Ki Duk and Jo Jae Hyun raped her, that there are many more victims, and that even Jo Jae Hyun’s manager tried to get involved.
There are many more victims who experienced worse, said the third anonymous actor on the show. “Those who are speaking out are testifying because [the level of assault is not as extreme].” The actor claimed that it wasn’t just Kim who raped her, but also veteran actor Cho Jae-hyun, a frequent star in the director’s movies. She said that even Cho’s manager attempted to have sex with her, offering to pair her up with Cho in his next films. “They were like hyenas [hunting] for women to rape… Kim and Cho called and banged on my door every night [during the shoot]. It was like hell.” She gave up acting following the abuse.
In response to the accusations, Kim Ki Duk admitted to forcefully kissing, but not anything else.
The director responded to requests for comment from “PD Notebook,” defending himself through a long text message he sent to the production team, which read, “Although I may have forcefully kissed, I never forced [anyone to do] something more than that.”
How is that even a credible defense in your head, honestly?
Meanwhile, Jo Jae Hyun gave a bizarre response of his own, saying that 80% of the rumors going around were inaccurate … but adding that some were inaccurate because they were understated.
On “PD Notebook,” Cho said through a phone call that 80 percent of the rumors on the internet [before the allegations were reported in the media] were inaccurate. “Some [information] is even understated,” said Cho. When the Korea JoongAng Daily asked Lee Sang-wook, a representative from Cho’s agency CS Actors, about what Cho meant by “understatement,” Lee said, “Cho will say what he has to say during an investigation if there is one.”
Again, I just find it impossible to believe either of them.
Meanwhile, as Nam Goong Yeon continues to deny charges of sexual harassment, accusers continue to come forward. A fifth woman has now come forward against Nam Goong Yeon, and notably, so has a witness.
She recently held an interview with SBS’s ‘8 o’ Clock News’, where she said, “In the mid 2000s, Nam Goong Yeon called me to his house for work purposes, and started touching me with pressure treatment as an excuse. After that, it turned very sexual. I’ve been getting psychological treatments since I quit that work. I’m joining the #MeToo because I got courage from the others revealing what happened. I hope this helps society become a place where the victim doesn’t have to stay silent.”
Perhaps most damning so far is that a man who is reportedly friends with Nam Goong Yeon witnessed a scene consistent with the accusations of these women.
A man who is friends with Nam Goong Yeon interviewed JTBC’s ‘Newsroom’. He revealed that he had witnessed a scene like the ones that the women were accusing Nam Goong Yeon of. He said, “The women were getting massages while on their stomachs. Near the end, he told them that they had to take their clothes off and said the effects were different if they had their clothes off.” He added, “He also showed me some photos on his phone that he had. It was photos of women’s bodies without their faces showing.”
I guess Nam Goong Yeon has to continue to deny things at this point considering his response to the previous four, but barring some kind of conspiracy, it sure doesn’t seem logical that all of these accounts are blatant lies.