All the times Song Hye Kyo experienced failures in her acting career

Despite being an A-lister, not every drama or movie starring Song Hye Kyo could achieve success. 

Song Hye Kyo‘s latest small screen comeback with Now We Are Breaking Up does not seem to live up to the hype because the drama’s viewership rating and coverage is only average. Compared to her previous hits, Now We Are Breaking has not yet achieved huge success both domestically and internationally. As for an A-list actress like Song Hye Kyo, perhaps “average” is actually a less harsh expression of “failure”.

Song Hye-kyo Now We Are Breaking Up

Song Hye Kyo is known as one of Korea’s “TV queens” as she was the star of many iconic dramas with a profound impact not only in Korea but also across Asia such as Autumn in My Heart, Full House, or Descendants of the Sun. However, not every TV series starring Song Hye Kyo is guaranteed to be successful. Not to mention her “bad luck” with theatrical films.

Song Hye-kyo "bad luck" with theatrical films.

One of Song Hye Kyo‘s major “flops” on the small screen is Worlds Within, broadcast 13 years ago on KBS2. Back in 2008, Song Hye Kyo was extremely popular because she previously contributed to the spread of the Hallyu wave across Asia with two classic hits Autumn in My Heart and Full House. In addition, her male co-star in Worlds Within was none other than Hyun Bin, one of Korea’s most loved male stars. Led by a “visual duo” with high public recognition, Worlds Within was expected to earn high ratings. 

Song Hye Kyo's major “flops” on the small screen is Worlds Within

However, the drama wrapped up with an average rating of 6.5% and a peak rating of 7.7%. These numbers were considered severely low in 2018. Worlds Within also marked Song Hye Kyo‘s first and only drama up to this point with a rating consistently failing to exceed 10%. The only thing that helps Worlds Within stays in the audience’s memory is probably the real-life dating story of Hyun Bin and Song Hye Kyo

Worlds Within Song Hye-kyo

Another drama that is considered a disappointment in Song Hye Kyo’s career is Encounter released in 2018, when she acted alongside younger male co-star Park Bo Gum. However, to be fair, Encounter cannot be deemed “flopped” according to common standards. Its result is only underwhelming compared to Song Hye Kyo’s previous hit drama, Descendants of the Sun. In fact, Encounter still recorded a double-digit rating in episode 2 and the premiere rating is still in the Top 10 highest-rated first episode in the history of tvN dramas. 

Encounter Song Hye-kyo

The average rating of 8.475% for a cable drama at the end of 2018 – the beginning of 2019 is not terrible. However, since the female lead is played by Song Hye Kyo, it makes sense that the public set a higher standard for her. Moreover, the biggest problem with Encounter is not the rating. According to many viewers, this melodrama is a setback in Song Hye Kyo‘s selection of script, because of the lengthy, boring storyline, and lack of climax. 

Song Hye Kyo experienced failures in her acting career
Song Hye Kyo experienced failures in her acting career

TV series aside, perhaps the biggest issue with Song Hye Kyo‘s career is the fact that she cannot get a breakout role in cinema, despite the efforts to change her image and co-starring top names. 

Her first two theatrical films, My Girl and I and Hwang Jin Yi, received high anticipation but ended up being box office flops. Cha Tae Hyun and Yoo Ji Tae – two talented male stars who worked with Song Hye Kyo in these two films could not help Song Hye Kyo’s big screen debuts achieve success either. The only consolation for her was that she received nominations for Best New Actress at the prestigious Blue Dragon Film Awards and Grand Bell Awards at the time.

My Girl and I Song Hye-kyo
Hwang Jin Yi Song Hye-kyo

Not only conquering the domestic film industry, but she also tried her hand at Hollywood through an indie movie called Make Yourself At Home and entered the Chinese film market with 4 films The Grandmaster, The Queens, and 2 seasons of ​​The Crossing. Unfortunately, all of Song Hye Kyo‘s efforts did not bring good results. Her role in Make Yourself At Home was praised for her effort and acting ability but was banned from broadcasting in many countries around the world including Korea because the topic was too sensitive.

The Queens Song Hye-kyo

In China, her movies’ box office performance was absolutely dismal, even when Song Hye Kyo co-starred with famous stars like Tony Leung, Zhang Ziyi, and Huang Xiaoming. Her roles and acting abilities in these flicks likewise failed to make an impression.

Song Hye Kyo experienced failures in her acting career

So, in retrospect, Song Hye Kyo‘s career was not always as successful as many believe. She still has a lot of failures. Despite her numerous failures, Song Hye Kyo remains one of the two highest-paid actresses in the Korean film business, despite having been renowned for more than 20 years. Failure may not be a big deal for Song Hye Kyo, but how she gets back up after falling is crucial.

Song Hye Kyo experienced failures in her acting career

What has happened in her career so far has shown how well Song Hye Kyo handles failure. So, Now We Are Breaking Up may also be another setback in Song Hye Kyo‘s career. And, perhaps it isn’t as significant or as impactful to her as what the media or the general public thinks.


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