Fee per episode for having Song Hye-kyo and Jeon Ji-hyun’s appearance in a drama is said to have exceeded 200 million won.
The fee to have Song Hye-kyo and Jeon Ji-hyun appear in a drama episode is said to have hit around 200 million won. Based on the standards disclosed so far, this is the highest figure in the film industry among female actors. Considering that the wage gap between male and female actors has always been mentioned as a chronic problem, this is something that is worth paying attention to.
According to a report on November 30th, Song Hye-kyo and Jeon Ji-hyun, who are currently active on the small screen, got paid more than 200 million won per episode. While Song Hye-kyo plays Ha Young-eun in SBS’s “Now, We Are Breaking Up”, Jeon Ji-hyun is meeting viewers through tvN’s drama “Jirisan” as Seo Yi-gang.
The reason why they are highly paid
In the case of Song Hye-kyo, it is said that the fee per episode she received for appearing in tvN’s drama “Encounter” in 2018, already exceeded 100 million, although it has not been officially released yet. Her previous work, “Descendants of the Sun”, also had great influence. “Descendants of the Sun” received high evaluation as it wrote a new history for Korean dramas by gaining explosive popularity as a syndrome that goes beyond the land of Korea. At that time, “Descendants of the Sun” drew attention as its copyright was sold at the highest price among Korean dramas
In a recent survey, Song Hye-kyo ranked No. 1 in the list of popular drama actors and actresses, and the items she wore in her drama also became highly wanted, giving her the nickname the “sold-out goddess.” Overseas reactions to her production are also heated. “Now, We’re breaking up” topped five markets on the video platform ViKi, including Europe, South America, North America, India, and Oceania.
Jeon Ji-hyun received a fee of 100 million won per episode when she appeared on SBS’s “My Love from the Star” in 2013. The actress created another Korean Wave craze by playing the supercilious top star Chun Song-yi in the drama. She also received more than 100 million won per episode in “Legend of the Blue Sea.” Jeon Ji-hyun can also be seen in numerous advertisements and is called a “walking medium-sized company.”
It has been reported that her drama “Jirisan,” which is currently airing, has already surpassed its break-even point, selling overseas broadcasting rights to iQIYI (called Netflix of China) for around 20 billion won. The ratings for the first episode were in the 9% range, proving viewers’ expectations. “Jirisan” was caught up in awkward CG and excessive PPL (indirect advertisement) controversy at the beginning of the broadcast, but is receiving keen attention from overseas fans. Immediately after its release, it topped the list of most viewed dramas on many overseas platforms.
In addition to these two actresses, Lee Young-ae, who recently returned to the small screen with JTBC’s “Koo Inspector,” is also a star who boasts a high acting fee. The actress was paid over 100 million won per episode when she appeared in “Saimdang, Memoir of Colors” four years ago. Although the ratings of “Koo Inspector” are somewhat low, it has consistently maintained the top spot on Netflix and is supported by many enthusiastic fans. Many are saying it is nice to see Lee Young-ae‘s character transformation.
What these three actors have in common is that they lead their works independently with their strong presence. Having a solid Hallyu fandom is another advantage as it makes things easier for their dramas to advance overseas.
Industry insiders said, “The difference in male and female actors’ income is huge.”
However, except for them, there are not many female actors who receive more than 100 million won per episode. One have to be at the level of Son Ye-jin and Ko Hyun-jung to be able to receive more than 100 million won per episode. On the other hand, male actors’ “100 million per episode” reports are relatively frequent. The actual number is much higher if actors whose fees have not been disclosed are also included.
In addition to the main character, the circumstances of the sub-lead and minor roles are similar. Officials explain that there is a wage difference between men and women as much as twice the amount between those of similar recognition and fame.
Currently, Kim Soo-hyun is considered the actor who receives the most appearance fee in Korea. It was reported that he received more than 500 million won per episode for his appearance in the Coupang play series “One Ordinary Day”, making headlines. This is much higher comparing to other male top stars. Usually, the set price is about 100 million won to 200 million won per episode.