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Korean actor Jang Dong-gun tops TIFF hysteria meter

Jang Dong-gun poses for photographs on the red carpet at the gala for the new movie Dangerous Liaisons during the 37th annual Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 10, 2012.


Some very big names have come through the festival this year: Ben Affleck, Bruce Willis, Johnny Depp, Will Smith, just to name a few. They scream for them at the galas. They cry on occasion too. But in all my years covering TIFF I have never seen them almost crash the gates.

Security had warned the crowd in advance of the premiere of Dangerous Liaisons at Roy Thomson Hall on Monday night that pushing would not be tolerated. They brought in extra staff to assist in case it got messy. It got messy. Not over Brad Pitt, not over George Clooney.

His name is Jang Dong-gun, a Korean superstar. And they are obsessed with him. So much that they started pushing the barricades begging for a moment, a photograph, an autograph, a flake of his skin, anything.

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The gates started to wobble. Bulky men in suits had to hold them back. I saw veins bulging in their necks as they tried to put up some resistance. Finally they calmed when Jang retreated to the safety of the red carpet, at which point a woman threw herself down on the ground in tears.

I felt like I'd just witnessed a shift in culture. Gangnam Style was the talk of the MTV VMAs a few days ago. And a Korean actor caused the most hysteria at TIFF. K-Pop is taking over!

Lainey Lui is a reporter for CTV's ETALK (weekdays, 7 p.m. ET) and gossip blogger

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