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Propelled to the Top by 200 Pounds

2007/01/13 Source

The actress Kim Ah-joong is the new star on the local film and pop music scenes. Everywhere, people are talking about her role in the movie "200 Pounds Beauty" and singing the theme song of the film. The movie drew more than 4 million moviegoers in only 20 days since its release on Dec. 14. The theme song has dominated all popular song charts. It is a megaton bomb of a success given that Kim had not played a leading role or sung a song in a movie since she debuted in 2004.

"200 Pound Beauty" is the only Korean film to compete with the Hollywood blockbuster "Night at the Museum", which was released a week later. It is also the only movie to draw more than 4 million viewers since "Tazza: The High Rollers", which was released during the Chuseok(Korean Thanksgiving) holiday. The producers expect the movie to draw 5 million or even 6 million viewers if it maintains the momentum. The number of theaters showing it has slightly gone down now new films are coming out, but an average of 80,000-90,000 people watch the movie every day. Kim's film looks set to become the mega-hit comedy to break the record of "My Boss, My Teacher", which drew 6.12 million viewers.

The pop music scene is another stage for the actress. "Maria", the theme song sung by Kim, has stayed on top of the music charts, including one compiled by online streaming music provider Bugs, for two weeks since the last week of last year. Another theme song, "Beautiful Girl", ranked 49th, defeating songs by superstar singers like Kim Jong-kuk, SG Wannabe, Lee Seung-chul and Sung Si-kyung. Kim also won the Digital Music Awards' "Song of the Month" last month hosted by the mini-homepage service operator Cyworld. The award is given to the song most sold as background music to their homepage service, and past winners include Cho PD, Sweet Box and Sung Si-kyung. Kim's "Maria" has been downloaded more than 170,000 times at least.

Enjoying the popularity, Kim has been traveling provincial cities to thank her fans directly. Along with director Kim Yong-hwa and co-star Kim Hyun-sook, she toured Jinju and Changwon in South Gyeongsang Province, and Pohang and Ulsan in North Gyeongsang Province on Saturday and Sunday.

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