Hallyu star Lee Byung-hun has been chosen by Japanese fans as one of the "Top 10 Favorite Actors."
NHK, Japan’s state-run network, has conducted a poll on its Web site (http://www.nhk.or.jp/bscinema/), asking Web users "What are your favorite films, and who are your favorite actors, actresses, and directors?" In the actors category, Lee was chosen as one of the ten favorite actors of Japanese fans, and the only Korean actor chosen in the poll.
A total of 10,181 Web users gave their answers to several questions in the poll. In the actors category, Lee joins world-renowned top stars, such as Tom Hanks, Robert De Niro, Johnny Depp and Leslie Cheung.
In the films category, three Korean films are ranked on the top ten list. Coincidentally, Lee acted in all three of these movies: "Joint Security Area" (2000), "Bungee Jumping of Their Own" (2000), and "A Bittersweet Life" (2005). Other films in this category include "Cinema Paradiso" (1988), "Roman Holiday" (1953), and "Farewell My Concubine" (1993), and the Japanese film "Tough Being a Man" (1969).
"Joint Security Area" was released in Japan before the hallyu boom began sweeping the Japanese nation, earning about 1 billion yen (10 billion won) in box-office ticket sales. "Bungee Jumping of Their Own" has topped the consumer satisfaction rating charts in Japan. "A Bittersweet Life" was exported to Japan at a relatively high price of 3.2 million dollars (about 3.2 billion won).
In the directors category, two Korean directors joined the top ten list. Director Park Chan-wook of "Joint Security Area" and director Kim Ji-woon of "A Bittersweet Life" were chosen for this category alongside world-famous directors Steven Spielberg, Tim Burton, Chen Kaige, and Akira Kurosawa.
Unfortunately, no Korean actresses were chosen on the list of top ten actresses. This category includes Nicole Kidman, Audrey Hepburn, Vivien Leigh, and Maggie Cheung.
Lee launched his Japanese fan club last year. He will hold a large-scale fan meeting at the Tokyo Dome, the symbolic dream stage in Japan, next month.”