Open World Entertainment
|Genre||K-pop, hip-hop, dance, teen pop|
|Headquarters||Seoul, South Korea|
|Number of locations||2|
|Key people||Jang Seok-woo (CEO)|
Open World Entertainment is a South Korean independent record label and talent management company. It was founded in 2000 by Jang Seok-woo and its current roster of recording artists include Kim Horam, The Boss and X-5 as well as actors Ko Joo-won and Shin Ji-soo. Its records are distributed by LOEN Entertainment and has a partnership with Sony Music Entertainment Japan.
In 2011, Open World Entertainment, holder of the trademark rights to boy band name of Shinhwa, granted the group permission to use the name as long as they perform together as a group. Hence allowing the group to established the 'Shinhwa Company', a joint venture agency for members to perform as a group. Open World also holds the rights to Shinhwa's overseas concerts with Shinhwa Company, and overseas licensing of the group's albums.
On 10 April 2012, Jang Seok-woo, the company's 51-year-old CEO, was arrested without warrant by undercover police detectives at his office. He is charged with habitual sexual harassment, assault and rape of his singers and trainees. Jang is the former boss of a criminal gang and a former nightclub owner.
Investigators interviewed over 20 victims and reported that over 30 victims were involved. The sexual assaults allegedly occurred on the company’s fifth floor and the choreography rehearsal studio in the basement, where he allegedly gave female victims beer mixed with aphrodisiacs, then sexually assaulted. He also coerced male group members, some were also minors at the time to assist in the assaults and directed the assaults via text messages and watched the CCTV footage from his office on the fifth floor.
On the day of arrest, Open World Entertainment issued a press statement, accusing media sources for spreading exaggeration and false reports of the scandal and threatening them with legal action if they do not retract their articles and issue official apologies for defaming the artists in the agency. Jang categorically denied all charges at first, but has since admitted to committing some of the crimes. On 12 April 2012, the Kangnam Police Station announced that Jang's warrant cited 6 female victims, 2 of them underage minors.
Korean police have since released more reports which allege that the CEO forced male idol group members to sexually assault female trainees and that he sexually assaulted trainees from a girl group that he personally managed. Jang had personally overseen and managed the screening and training processes for aspiring trainees.
On 15 April 2012, Kangnam police officials stated:
“Since the end of 2010, the CEO sexually harassed six trainees over 10 times. In the process, he had also ordered male idol groups members under his own agency to harass them as well. We believe that the CEO had not used violence or threats to force the male idols into committing such acts, but rather his status and power. We will have to continue our investigations on whether there was such compliance at the actual scene.”
Since Jang was taken in police custody on 13 April, boy band The Boss has cancelled the planned released date of their first Korean album, and together with label mate X-5 have stopped their activities and performances.
|Debut||Artists||Gender||Members||Leader||Disbanded||Fanclub name||Official color|
|2006||Jun Jin||Male||Solo||N/A||Left the company (as of 26 June 2012)|
|2010||The Boss||Male||5||Mika||Left the company (exact date unconfirmed), moved to Poom Entertainment||Master||Pearl Terracotta|
|2011||X-5||Male||5||Ghun||All members left the company, news confirmed on Dec 5, 2012||Xenia (unconfirmed)|
- Popsicle (Mika, Karam & Jay)
- Popsicle - I Love You Until It Snows In Summer
- The Boss - Love power
- X-5 - XENOS
- The Boss - Love Bingo!
- The Boss - love Parade
- The Boss - Lady
- The Boss - Love Days
- X-5 - Dangerous
YPA (Young Producers Association)
- YPA Project Album (JunJin, Gan Miyeon, Tei, K.Will, Brown Eye Girls, After School)
- 1st Open World Festival Tokyo Japan - 26 November 2011
- "Shinhwa announces launching of Shinhwa Company" 10 Asia. 2 August 2011. Retrieved 2012-03-19
- Kim, JiYeon "Open World Entertainment Rep Arrested on Sexual Assault Charges" CJ E&M enewsWorld. 11 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-11
- "Sex crimes in showbiz industry jolt society". Korea Times. 24 April 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2012.
- "단독전진 대국남아 기획사 대표 성폭행 혐의 긴급 체포". Naver News (in Korean) (TV리포트). 10 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
- Lee Jeong-bong; Sarah Kim (19 April 2012). "Police dig deeper into assaults, rape at talent agency". Joongang Daily. Retrieved 26 June 2012.
- "오픈월드엔터테인먼트, 허위과장보도에 '경고'(전문포함)". News Way (in Korean). 11 April 2012. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
- "소속 연습생 성폭행 혐의 오픈월드엔터테인먼트 대표 구속 영장". Herald Media (in Korean). 12 April 2012. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
- "경찰, ‘성폭행 혐의’ 오픈월드 대표에 구속영장 청구". Star Today (in Korean). 12 April 2012. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
- "오픈월드엔터테인먼트 장 모대표, 잦은 밤업소 출입 취중 손버릇 최악". eToday (in Korean). 11 April 2012. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
- "유명 기획사 대표 A씨, 상습 성폭행 혐의로 긴급 체포". Sports Seoul (in Korean) (Naver). 12 April 2012. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
- Park Young Woong "The Boss cancels their album release after arrest of president" Star News (Naver). 17 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-19
- Ho, Stewart (26 June 2012). "Shinhwa’s Jun Jin’s Contract With the Scandal-Plagued Open World Entertainment Ends". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 26 June 2012.
- "Actor Go Joo-won signs with Jun Jin's agency" Asiae. 17 November 2009. Retrieved 2012-04-11
- Oh, MiJung "Jun Jin Released from Public Service" Mnet News. 14 November 2011. Retrieved 2012-04-01