Though she’s now a model, YouTuber, and CEO of an online shopping mall, Kwon Hyuk Jung opened up about the years she spent training to become an idol and how Korean entertainment agencies handle trainees who were school bullies in their pasts.
In a video dedicated to her trainee days, Kwon Hyuk Jung revealed that her agency asked straight up if she’d ever been involved in any kind of bullying. Though she hadn’t, she revealed how the agency handled the trainees that were.
Rather than releasing those trainees from their contracts, the company was prepared to cover it up:
So I told them that I never was and they said, ‘Are you sure? If not, you should tell me right now so that we can make it not released to the public now. But if it’s exposed later, then we can do nothing about it. So, be honest with us now.’
— Kwon Hyuk Jung
The agency was so thorough in their questioning of trainees’ bullying pasts that they broke down which of the “different types of bullies” they were. Kwon Hyuk Jung said, “One who harrassed others and ones who just got along with bullies. They asked in detail.”
Bullying wasn’t the only thing from some trainees’ pasts the agency was willing to cover up. Kwon Hyuk Jung revealed that they’d made up an entire story to explain the lingerie photos she’d taken as an underwear model before becoming a trainee.
Shooting underwear was not a good image like now, and the public could not quite understand it. So I told them, ‘Wouldn’t this be a problem after debut?’
And they said they already made up a story that I had no choice but to do it.
— Kwon Hyuk Jung
According to Kwon Hyuk Jung’s experiences, agencies go farther than you’d expect to make sure certain trainees debut with clean images. Listen to her reveal the way agencies handle those who were once school bullies in their pasts.