Tag Archives: Jay Chou

PSY And The Acceptable Asian Man

By Guest Contributor refresh_daemon, cross-posted from init_music

 The song of the hour.

So, by now, pretty much everybody who covers Korean music and a batch of mainstream international publications have had something to say about PSY’s “Gangnam Style”, which has, as of the writing of this post, had over 190 million views on YouTube, become an internet sensation, led to Psy getting airplay over the radio in some larger metropolitan cities in the US, and even got him signed to the record label that represents Justin Bieber. And while everyone I know that follows Korean music knows PSY, even my friends and peers who otherwise don’t care a thing about Korean or Asian media know about PSY and holler “Oppa Gangnam Style” along with him.

Much has been said about the viral sensation, breaking down the best moments of the video, examining whether or not this is a boon to Korean music’s attempts to break into one of the most lucrative music markets in the world, and some pieces even went deep into the actual meaning of “Gangnam Style.” And I was happy to let everyone else talk about “Gangnam Style” and its place in our world…except that I still have yet to read an article that hits one particular reason why I think “Gangnam Style” is so acceptable to Western audiences when every Korean and Japanese pop artist that tried to make it in America before has failed.
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Open Thread: Jay Chou In The Green Hornet

By Arturo R. García

With the Green Hornet trailer attached to various showings of the latest Harry Potter movie, more of America got introduced to Jay Chou, the newest Kato. Sort of.

See, if all you had to go by was the preview, you’d guess Chou’s Kato was there solely to help Seth Rogen discover his inner Jack Burton, or something. But according to Asian Angry Man, who got to read some of the script, the Kato role represented a golden opportunity – for an Asian-American actor:

There are plenty of Asian stars with international appeal and all that, but I get the feeling it would work out best for everyone if English-language proficiency wasn’t a major hurdle for whoever gets this role. Of course, I’m not the guy making decisions at Sony.

One theory suggests that the guy making said decisions cast Chou  – and before him, of Stephen Chow, who was also slated to direct Hornet before dropping out – because of the hope to tap into the markets where he’s a multi-platform star:

By this reasoning, the film’s dynamic would be flipped in promoting the film in Asia: Kato would be highlighted as the heroic half of the team, with Rogen’s Britt Reid getting tagged as the sidekick. But I’m curious to get our reader’s takes not just on seeing Chou get what could be a breakout role for him in the U.S. market, but arguments like AAM’s.