‘The Glory’ director accused of bullying as a student in PH; filmmaker says sorry for controversy
Ahn Gil-ho, director of the hit K-drama “The Glory” starring Song Hye-kyo and Lee Do-hyun, was accused of bullying in school when he was studying in the Philippines in 1996, and has since admitted to the incident.
Shortly before the season two premiere of the series, Ahn was accused of physically assaulting his classmates at an international school in the Philippines in 1996 by an anonymous post in an online community, according to a report from Korean media outlet Korea JoongAng Daily last March 10.
“I do not want to cause controversy just because Ahn is doing well. I just find it absurd and unforgivable that a perpetrator of school bullying would direct a television show about bringing school bullies to justice. So, I decided to make this public,” the post’s author, who discovered that Ahn was the director of “The Glory” only recently, was quoted as saying.
The anonymous writer also claimed that the South Korean director assaulted them and their classmates after the filmmaker discovered that they teased his girlfriend at that time, per Korean media outlet Sports Chosun.
“If Ahn denies these claims, classmates who have been bullied and assaulted by Ahn at the international school are ready to testify… if Ahn comes forward to say that he will take legal action against these allegations, we will also actively respond,” they said per report.
Ahn denied the allegations soon after, while Studio Dragon — the production company of “The Glory” noted that they would look into the incident on the same day.
The Korean filmmaker, however, went on to apologize for the controversy on Sunday, March 12, per his lawyer Kim Mun-hui from Jipyong law firm via Sports Chosun.
“We ask for understanding in that there was a slight delay in time from the initial report to announcing our stance. Director Ahn Gil-ho had a girlfriend whom he started dating at the time while studying abroad in the Philippines in 1996, and when he heard that his girlfriend became subject to teasing at school due to him, he momentarily got emotional and gave another person an unforgettable wound,” the statement read, according to a translation from entertainment platform Soompi.
Ahn also asked for forgiveness to those who were “hurt” by the incident, and he also expressed his desire to meet the anonymous author to personally apologize.
“Ahn Gil-ho asks for forgiveness from deep within his heart to those who were hurt by this incident. If given the opportunity, he would like to meet the person, or at least contact through phone, to convey his apology. He apologizes for causing controversy over an unfortunate incident,” the statement said.
The director also noted that he took time to go over the incident since it reportedly happened 27 years ago, saying that while his memories were “faint,” he was also afraid of “distorting the incident,” as per report.
In an exclusive interview with select entertainment reporters, including one from INQUIRER.net, the K-drama’s stars Kim Hieo-ra, Cha Joo-young, Kim Gun-woo, and Jung Sung-il firmly stated that they wouldn’t tolerate bullying and other forms of injustice.
“I’m the type of person who reacts immediately [especially in situations like these], but I would definitely intervene with the bully. I cannot tolerate injustice, and I would do my best to make [the bully] realize that it is wrong in a strong, but in a legal way. I would also report them to the police [if things get worse],” Jung said.
“The Glory” revolves around an aspiring architect turned bullying victim Moon Dong-eun who sought revenge against her tormentors and even its bystanders. It stars Song Hye-kyo, Lee Do-hyun, and Lim Ji-yeon, among many others. EDV