Like many other actors when they debuted, Jung Hae-In played the lead character's brother or friend. It was not till 2018 when he paired with Son Ye-Jin in the romance drama, Something In The Rain, his role as a "warm boy" caught the public's attention and he was conferred the title of "National Cougler", that Jung's career reached its turning point.
During this interview, Jung's leading role in D.P. season 2 was about to be aired, his part as a soldier is a stark departure from his previous "warm boy" roles in romance dramas, which can be said to be another breakthrough for Jung's career.
During D.P.'s first season, it had already triggered social discussion in its native country as the drama explores the South Korean military's hierarchical practice and the associated bullying. Jung's role of a private assigned to a team, tracking down military deserters, endured various experiences in the process. Likewise after the series aired, not only did it ignite many heated discussions, it also evoked memories of people's own experiences during their military service. The drama received critical acclaim and went on to win "The Best Drama" at South Korea's Baeksang Arts Awards, so naturally all eyes are on the new season's plot. "The characters in the second season are explored more in-depth than the first season, delving into the characters' inner contradictions and battles. The second season will also add new characters to enrich the plot," shares Jung.
He will be promoted in the new season, and the series will continue to explore why the dark side of the military is deliberately ignored, and why bullying and discrimination are daily military occurrences that are not taken seriously.
Coincidentally, D.P. season 2's airing marks Jung's 10th anniversary since his debut. Jung's childhood dream was to become a bioengineer. That is until after his college entrance examinations, and he was on the way to the movie theatre, when he was discovered by a talent scout. Thereafter the idea of becoming an actor began to germinate, and he subsequently enrolled himself in acting courses.
His parents were initially opposed to the switch, but Jung managed to win their approval and support through his persistence and enthusiasm for acting. "Since then, I have enjoyed acting very much. Different works and roles have also allowed me to accumulate rich performing experience, and I believe my acting skills will change and evolve with age. My goal in life is to be able to continue to act, but I will not say that I have achieved my goal yet. I'm continuously moving toward my dream. My dream is actually quite simple: to be healthy and to live every day and with a grateful heart," says Jung.
Having been in the industry for a decade, it's logical to sort out and summarise Jung's performance over the years. "If I had to choose my proudest work, it would be difficult. Put it this way, I would think D.P. brought me a breakthrough in my acting career, because the character and plot are completely different from all my previous work.
"The thing is, I have never deliberately counted how long I have been in the industry. Whether it is five or 10 years, it's just a number. The most important thing is that I hope I will not regret my past performances if I were to watch them in the future. In the past 10 years, I have acted in more than 20 dramas and movies, and I have enjoyed satisfaction from these works, regardless of how tough the process was, or the challenges I faced. I still find it very interesting.
"Of course, I will want to take a vacation and have a good rest. If my body sends a signal, I will definitely take a vacation to recharge and clean the slate of my previous roles, so I can absorb new subject matters and perspectives. I think this kind of treatment is applicable to everyone, energy can only be added if there is an offloading."
Apart from acting, Jung also likes to sing. He fell in love with South Korean singer Lee Moon Se's song when it was included in the original soundtrack of the drama he acted in.
"I fell in love with his song when I heard it, I listened to it on repeat. I generally pay attention to lyrics when I listen to songs as well as the emotions carried in them. Recently, I've taken a liking to sports too and I really enjoy playing golf. Contrary to how it appears, golf is not an easy sport, and I'm attracted to overcoming unique challenges," shares Jung.
Jung has always been stereotyped as a "warm boy" or a "National Cougler" in his career thus far. The truth is that his persona also falls in line with the "warm boy". When he is not working, he enjoys dinner with his friends. He particularly enjoys barbequing and would volunteer to grill food for others to enjoy, so much so that he is fondly hailed "barbeque expert".
"I like to help others barbeque meat because I'm confident of my skills, and I feel that I'm very good at controlling the heat and taste. But I'm not a master chef and I usually cook simple dishes like stew or fried rice at home," says Jung.
Looking forward to the future, Jung doesn't have too many thoughts, he just hopes to do his best for every role. "If I hadn't become an actor, I think I would still work hard to equip myself to become an actor eventually. To be honest, if I'm not an actor, I can't think of what else I would like to do. Every time I watch the work of my seniors, it reinvigorates and motivates me. I respect the two seniors, Han Suk-Kyu and Lee Byung-Hun, and I appreciate that they can perfectly present different images and characters in each role. If I had to choose my favourite movie, I would say it's About Time, the portrayal of people and time in it is quite beautiful," says Jung.
There's a spark in Jung's eyes whenever he talks about acting. With his hard work and determination, becoming the next best actor could just be around the corner.
Photography: Choi Moon Hyuk
Art Direction: Paddy Chan
Styling: Yoon Seul Ki
Photography Assistants: Kim Dong June, Seo Hye Yoon, and Jeon Sung Woo
Makeup: Soon Yeol
Hair: Sung Chan
When a design is as revered as the Dior Saddle, any attempts at refreshing its look could be potentially contentious. But Dior Men artistic director Kim Jones is not one to stay on the side of convention. After all, this is the man who has been tapping into the House’s more feminine-centric haute couture history to build and expand its menswear universe. And with the Dior Saddle, Jones continues to revisit the fundamentals of its design and to transmute them into inspired accessories.
The Dior Saddle bag was first conceived more than two decades ago by former artistic director John Galliano. It’s essentially a shoulder purse, meant to be worn tight right in the armpit with its short top handle sitting on one’s—typically a woman’s—shoulder. It wasn’t until Jones’ debut collection for Dior Men that the bag was officially de-genderised. The top handle strap was replaced by a more industrial-looking adjustable one that adapts for crossbody wear and differentiated from its women’s counterpart by a Matthew M. Williams-designed buckle.
If the Saddle bag designed for men captures a more defiant spirit from the original, the latest inspired creation refines the look further. For the Dior Men winter 2023 collection, Jones opts to pay tribute to the elegance of the equestrian world—the origins of the Saddle bag.
The Dior Saddle Boxy bag looks more simplified from the outside. The leather tails attached to the magnetic flap of the original have been removed altogether for a more graphic focus on the curved lines of the bag. With this new iteration, what you’re getting is pretty much a storage upgrade—the Dior Saddle Boxy features an extended body acting as the main compartment topped with a zipper. The original Dior Saddle silhouette then becomes the bag’s smaller front compartment. The dimensions of the Dior Saddle Boxy are about the same as the Dior Saddle but now divided into two compartments for better organisation.
Instead of grained calfskin, the Dior Saddle Boxy is dressed in the house’s new Dior Oblique Gravity leather. Not only is the entire body embossed with the signature Dior Oblique motif, it’s also done in a cloudy effect that is further emphasised through the patent treatment. The straps—a top handle as well as an adjustable shoulder strap that are both detachable—have too been refined. They’re cut from leather and are intentionally thin in width to reflect the more elegant profile.
Regard this latest take as the more grown up, elevated version—one you could easily pair with a suit without feeling as though you’re making the entire outfit a touch more casual. The look of the Dior Saddle Boxy may be a slight departure from the original, yet the functionality and versatility remain. And that’s exactly how you rework an icon.
The Dior Saddle Boxy is now available in boutiques and online.
If there's one trend in fashion that's held strong for years now, it's the hold that K-pop has on luxury fashion. The latest group to be officially named as Dior ambassadors is TOMORROW X TOGETHER, or more commonly known as TXT. The five-piece group made their debut in 2019 and are label mates with another K-pop phenom BTS—the first male group to ever collaborate with Dior Men back in 2019. TOMORROW X TOGETHER's ambassadorship was preceded by their performance at Lollapalooza Chicago on 5 August where Dior Men artistic director Kim Jones created custom looks for their set.
Famed for its feline mascot—the regally named Lord Nermal—Los Angeles-based brand RIPNDIP has dropped its collaboration with Puma. It's a fuss-free range of apparel, accessories and sneakers that combine Lord Nermal graphics with distinct Puma branding. On a number of pieces, including a sweat set, Lord Nermal evolves into Puma's cat logo, while he peeks mischievously along the sides of collaborative Puma Slipstreams.
The Puma x RIPNDIP collection is now available at Puma 313@somerset, VivoCity, Bugis+, ION Orchard and Jewel stores, Puma.com, and select Limited Edt. stores.
We're about a month away from seeing newly installed creative director Sabato de Sarno's vision for Gucci. But ahead of the actual runway show that's set to take place during Milan Fashion Week, de Sarno teased a high jewellery campaign for the Italian fashion house on his personal Instagram account. The David Sims-lensed image features Daria Werbowy poolside at the Chateau Marmont hotel in Los Angeles, wearing statement earrings as well as subtly branded Gucci bikini bottoms. Werbowy was part of a 2004 campaign for Gucci during the Tom Ford era, potentially signalling a return to a similar aesthetic—of glossy glamour and sensuality.
New York-based Tapestry, Inc.—the parent company of Coach—is acquiring Capri Holdings in an USD8.5 billion deal. The latter's portfolio, comprising Michael Kors, Versace, and Jimmy Choo, will be added to Tapestry's existing umbrella of brands that includes Coach, Kate Spade, and Stuart Weitzman. In a press release, CEO of Tapestry Joanne Crevoiserat says: "From this position of strength, we are ready to leverage our competitive advantages across a broader portfolio of brands. The combination of Coach, Kate Spade, and Stuart Weitzman together with Versace, Jimmy Choo, and Michael Kors creates a new powerful global luxury house, unlocking a unique opportunity to drive enhanced value for our consumers, employees, communities, and shareholders around the world."
For Loewe's autumn/winter 2023 menswear campaign, Japanese musician Kenshi Yonezu (also known as Hachi) offers a glimpse into his creative impulses. Photographed by Arnaud Lajeunie, the campaign features Yonezu in the collection's standout pieces—including a shirt affixed with metal wings—alongside comic books, novels and memorabilia that have shaped Yonezu. Creative director Jonathan Anderson calls the partnership timely as Loewe celebrates its 50th year in Japan.
Back during the Dior Men fall 2023 presentation—a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle set against the backdrop of the pyramids of Giza, Egypt—the house also previewed its collaboration for the season. It sits separate from the core Dior Men fall 2023 collection, but at the same time, serves as an extension.
Aptly named Dior Tears, the capsule collection sees artistic director Kim Jones coming together with longtime friend Tremaine Emory's Denim Tears brand. Emory is also Supreme's current creative director.
"I want to share that moment in time, that beautiful moment in time where Black writers and musicians and artists were coming from America, running from America, and finding some level of acceptance in certain European cities and being able to have their art respected and who they are respected," says Emory in the collection notes. "It wasn’t perfect but it was just a moment, a beautiful moment for Blacks to have the privilege and opportunity to escape from the terror, the horrors of America, a segregated Jim Crow America. Artists like Miles Davis and writers like James Baldwin found refuge in Paris."
It's a converging of ideas between New York and Paris. Much like the African-American experience that inspired Emory, Dior Tears takes stylistic references of Black jazz musicians from the '50s and '60s and mashes them with French savoir-faire. At the heart of it is a denim-rich collection (coincidentally, the material has its origins in France) that's then complimented by Dior Men's techniques and craft.
A constant technical conversation between France and America takes the form of the latter's homespun fabrications mixed in with French jacquards and precise tailoring. Dior Oblique motifs are of course, splattered sparingly throughout the Dior Tears capsule collection, while the colour palette sticks to a healthy dose of brights that are reminiscent of the African diaspora.
What's especially noteworthy—as with most Dior Men collaborations overseen by Jones—is that the Dior Tears capsule collection leans neither too heavily on either collaborators' aesthetics. There's a synergy and somewhat equal marriage of ideas—just like how a collaboration should be like.
The Dior Tears capsule collection is out now at Dior Men boutiques. View the full collection in the gallery below.
It would have been easy to make his fifth anniversary as artistic director of Dior Men all about him. And it would've been justifiable too, seeing how Kim Jones has continuously crafted collection after collection of menswear offerings while tapping into Dior's archives and haute couture sensibilities. Jones' inclination to collaborate with other brands, designers, and artists have also helped widened Dior Men's reach.
Yet, the Dior Men spring/summer 2024 collection was far from an ego trip.
True to form, Jones once again referenced Dior's storied history. "Dior is an haute couture house: it is all about the clothes. At the heart of Dior is silhouette, shape, technique and fabrication of the very highest order," says Jones in the collection notes. "It's a culture we have inherited from womenswear past and applied to menswear present. And for the first time in our collections, it is a collage of influences from different Dior predecessors and eras we wanted to pay tribute to at once—together with some of our own. All are connected through texture and technique alongside some of the Dior pop icons, particularly the Cannage."
The show's staging seemed to suggest—on his fifth anniversary no less; a feat that not many can claim in fashion nowadays—that Jones was leaving it all out in the open. The entirety of the collection's 51 looks ascended from below the tiled floor and models stood waiting for their turn to walk along the grid's perimeter. There was no pretence in the spring/summer 2024 collection—no surprises, just well executed designs that cemented the Dior Men canon he's crafted five years ago.
The fit: Jones referenced a quartet of the house's former creative heads for the Dior Men spring/summer 2024 collection. Yves Saint Laurent's silhouettes were the guiding principle in the collection's look, particularly in the effortless, sweeping tailoring brought about by trousers cropped slightly above the ankles and at times designed with pleats for added volume. The collection's defining piece, the cardigan, was casually draped over shoulders in multiple variations of Cannage tweeds, Gianfranco Ferré-inspired ornate embellishments as well as dripping cabochons—the latter a Monsieur Dior nod.
Marc Bohan's play of textures informed the tactile elements of the collection. Tweed was the main vehicle used across a variety of pieces, expanding its use from just the traditional. It was seen on everything from summer-appropriate vests to all manner of the collection's bags and accessories, especially the iconic Saddle.
The details: Loafers—tweed or otherwise—were stamped with a new circular Dior logo derived from the Lady Dior hardware. The logo appeared as buckles on a number of bags too. Sandwich bags crafted in a selection of the collection's key fabrications would most likely be the novelty accessory of the season, and was most beautifully executed in supple leather decorated with the Cannage motif. The eye-catching beanies seen on a number of models, incorporated ronghua right in the centre. These velvet flowers were crafted by master craftsmen in the trade who worked closely with the Dior ateliers.
Three exceptional looks: Look 7's stunning Cannage tweed coat in signature Dior grey and paired with a pop of bold colour in the form of a beanie; the tailoring in look 31 that incorporated a bowtie appliqué on a pocket of the three-buttoned blazer; and the closing look 51 that was dripping with cabochons paired with high-fluo pink.
The takeaway: Who needs a collaboration when the past offers so much inspiration and content to remix for the now?
View the full Dior Men spring/summer 2024 collection in the gallery below.
It was five years ago that artistic director Kim Jones presented his very first runway collection for Dior Men. The collection marked a turning point for the house's menswear universe with Jones adapting Christian Dior's women-centric creations and haute couture techniques for men. And of course, it heralded a time of collaborations with partners outside of the realm of fashion.
The Dior Men spring/summer 2024 runway show marks the fifth-year anniversary of Jone at the house. Offering a teaser into what the collection could look like, the house invited Australian actor Felix Mallard—of Netflix's Ginny & Georgia fame—into some of the archival inspirations that Jones were taken by. Cabochon jewellery as well as tweed, for example, look to be key elements of the collection.
If Jones is looking to emulate the kind of collaborative successes that he's introduced for Dior Men since the beginning of his tenure, we may also see one for spring/summer 2024.
Watch the Dior Men spring/summer 2024 runway show here live from Paris Fashion Week Men's.
What: Dior Men spring/summer 2024 runway show
Where: Paris, France
When: Friday, 23 June 2023 at 9pm Singapore time