Thursday, November 09, 2006

Eun-Ju Lee (Corrs song) FALLEN STAR

Like a falling star, Eun-Ju Lee was a bright and beautiful presence for a short time, and when thousands began to point to her, that's when the descent began.
This pretty South Korean actress seemed to deal with each new challenge in her career, rising from teen comedy roles to the more difficult parts of a blind woman, a woman dying of cancer, and a reporter carrying a deadly fetus. In many films her screen character suffered and died, and it seemed tough for this increasingly depressed and weary young woman to go home at night and shake off the day's shoot.
Adding to her pressures was family debt, an irony considering she was now one of her country's biggest stars. She appeared in "Tae Guk Gi," which was to South Korea what "Gone With the Wind" is to the U.S.A., starred in "Phoenix" (aka "Firebird") a huge TV soap opera (now on 9 DVD discs) and, near exhaustion, took on yet another bizarre and harrowing role. In "The Scarlet Letter" she played a bisexual nightclub singer in a script containing nudity, violence and gore. Aside from grotesque scenes in which she was blood-spattered and screaming, she also had to be convincing in the scene in which she performs a song.
She chose to sing in English, and performed the eerie Corrs song "Only When I Sleep." It was her only recording, and her last role. Not long after the film was made, and only weeks after graduating college, Eun-Ju Lee slit her wrists and hanged herself, leaving an apologetic note to her mother.
Two notes: in South Korea last names are given first (there, she's Lee Eun-Ju) and since phonetic English translation varies, her name is often spelled Eun-Joo. An actress with a similar name co-stars in "Take Care of my Cat."
Here's a worthy version of "Only When I Sleep,"even if she had some difficulty pronouncing certain words. Perhaps the fleeting photos on this page will lead you to buy or rent one of her films. She was talented, beautiful, and for as long as it was possible for her, determined and brave.
Eun-Ju Lee covers ONLY WHEN I SLEEP

No comments: