The producing director (PD) of the 2016 JTBC variety show “Hitmaker” has responded to reports of the cast’s involvement in a group chatroom where illegally taken videos of women were shared by Jung Joon Young.

On March 28, MBC’s “Newsdesk” reported about another chatroom with Jung Joon Young, which was full of messages that disparaged women, and even included discussion of the possibility of using illegally filmed video footage as blackmail.

The report further stated that the chatroom included 14 people, eight of whom are singers. The report also included newly identified participants referred to as “singer K,” “singer J,” and “model L.”

Following the reports, suspicions arose that the newly identified participants are the cast members of JTBC’s 2016 variety show “Hitmaker.”

In response, the “Hitmaker” PD Park Han Soon drew the line between the show and the reports by saying that the production team cannot know the private lives of the cast.

PD Park Han Soon said, “We usually create a group chatroom when we begin to film a program. However, it’s only used to post notices such as ‘The script is out,’ ‘You need to come by this time,’ and ‘We will begin filming at this hour.'” He continued, “We are not able to check if a separate KakaoTalk group chatroom with only the cast members exist.”

When asked about the atmosphere of filming at the time, the director said, “Because they are young and of similar age, the atmosphere couldn’t be bad. The cast seemed to have become closer with each other since we had to film abroad.”

There are also suspicions of Jung Joon Young ordering prostitution services abroad in 2016. On March 15, KBS reported a conversation from April 2016, in which Jung Joon Young told CNBLUE’s Lee Jong Hyun that he met prostitutes in Berlin. This is around the same time that “Hitmaker” was being filmed.

Regarding the suspicions, PD Park Han Soon said, “Aside from when we are filming, the production team and the cast spent time separately. [The messages are] something that [the production team] is unable to know.” He added, “[The production team] stayed at a cheaper place, and the cast stayed at a place like a guest house because we had to film them while at their lodgings.”

Jung Joon Young was arrested on March 21 and is currently being held at a detention center. He has been charged with 11 instances of sharing illegally taken footage. He will have his case forwarded to prosecutors today (March 29) with a recommendation for indictment.

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