Rain Damages Top $8 Mil
A jury in Honolulu has ordered Korean pop star and actor Jeong Ji-hoon, also known as Rain, along with his management team, to pay more than $8 million in damages to a Hawaiian promoter over the cancellation of a 2007 concert at the city’s
Promoter Click Entertainment alleged in its suit the company lost valuable business opportunities, earnings and income and suffered damages to its reputation after Ji-hoon’s scheduled performance at the venue was canceled a week before showtime.
The jury found March 19 that Ji-hoon and co. had breached their contract and defrauded the promoter. Reportedly $5 million of the damages awarded were punitive.
Ji-hoon testified March 16 that he had no control over the cancellation and would have loved to perform in North America.
“My part is on the stage performance,” he said through an interpreter, according to the Honolulu Advertiser. “Everything else is arranged by the management team.”
That team – JYP Entertainment, Star M Entertainment and Revolution Entertainment – is also named in Click’s suit.
Click attorney Eric Seitz pressed Ji-hoon for more details regarding the cancellation of the show, and referenced a contract between he, JYP and Star M, asking the singer whether he remembered signing the contract to perform in Hawaii, the paper reported.
“Oh, yes,” Ji-hoon said. “Because I really wanted to perform in Hawaii.”
It certainly didn’t seem that way to Click Entertainment promoter Seung Su Lee, who testified days earlier that much of Ji-hoon’s 90-person entourage never even applied for proper visas, and thus, never intended to perform.
Seitz said in court that Lee paid $500,000 for the rights to host the show, but “hasn’t seen a penny,” of that money since the cancellation, which ultimately cost him $1.5 million.
However, Ji-hoon attorney Jon Crocker said in court that Click has gone after the “wrong people” in the suit, explaining that JYP had reportedly sold its rights to the Rain tour to Star M for $10 million, which then sold the North American rights to Revolution for $2.25 million.
Crocker also noted the trademark challenge the singer faced from a Beatles cover band (Rain – A Tribute To The Beatles) at the time of the Honolulu cancellation, as well as staging problems at the venue.
Click’s suit sought damages for costs associated with staging the event at Aloha Stadium, production, travel, hotel accommodations, merchandising and advertising.
Following the trial in Hawaii, Ji-hoon and his team could also face legal challenges over cancellations in California. The singer’s facing a $30 million suit over a June 2007 cancellation at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, and Ji-hoon’s team was served with papers surrounding another suit stemming from a San Diego cancellation the same day the singer testified in court, the Advertiser reported.