By Lee Hyo-won
Amid the escalating scandal over falsified or forged academic records of prominent social figures and celebrities, popular actor Daniel Henney
finds himself caught in the wildfire alongside veteran actors like Choi Soo-jong
and Jang Mi-hee
"It was known to some people that Henney attended the University of Illinois at Chicago, but this is a false rumor", the star's agency was quoted as telling Yonhap News.
"Henney had attended Albion College, Alma College and Elgin College in Illinois. But family circumstances made it hard for him to continue his studies, he was not able to complete his college degree after starting his modeling career", the agency said.
The model-turned-actor immediately rose to stardom here from his appearance in the hit MBC TV series "My Name is Kim Sam-soon
" (2005). He was since introduced here as having attended Albion College and transferring to the state university on a basketball scholarship.
Major portal Web sites here such as Naver and Daum listed that the 27-year-old had attended the University of Illinois at Chicago, and even specified that he had an economics major.
"Henney once mentioned that he was on his college basketball team and played alongside students from other local universities during open season. I think the University of Illinois at Chicago rumor started from there", said his manager Jeong Won-seok. "But neither the agency nor Henney directly told portal sites or the press anything untrue about his studies", he said.
"Henney never knew his academic records were falsely publicized, and the agency did not give much thought about the misinformation on the Internet. With the recent issue about academic records, we avoided correcting the problem because we were afraid it would reflect badly", said Jeong. "We are very sorry and deeply apologize".
Henney's big screen debut piece "Seducing Mr. Perfect
" (2006) continued to spotlight his clean-cut, modern-day prince charming image. Henney's latest film "My Father"
, directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk
and co-starring veteran actor Kim Young-chul
, opens here Thursday. "It is a very important movie for me", the actor told reporters during a press conference at a Seoul theater Thursday. Breaking away from his "Mr. Perfect" persona, he plays an adoptee returning to Korea to search for his birth family, only to discover that his only surviving parent is a death row inmate.