A recent episode of SBS’s “One Night of TV Entertainment” on January 27 covered a segment revealing the extraordinary gifting culture of fan clubs.
A fan reveals in an interview, “1 million won (approximately $800) is not a big amount. There are those that give more than that and also gift the parents of celebrities in addition to the celebrities themselves. There is intense competition even with the smallest things amongst the fans.”
Some of these gifts that fans give to their favorite celebrities include 100 million won (approximately $83,000) in cash, a luxury sedan worth 60 million won (approximately $50,000), and a 30 million won (approximately $25,000) brand-name watch. Another fan also mentions that Chinese fans even hand over bundles of cash in person to celebrities they pass by.
Despite these lavish gifts, fan gifting culture has given way to a healthier culture of making charitable donations on behalf of their favorite celebrities. Often times these donations come with traditional wreaths bearing the name of a celebrity as the donor. Upon being asked who has given the biggest charitable rice donation to date, a wreath maker for rice donation explains,“TVXQ Changmin’s fans have donated around 47 tons of rice. The rice alone is more than 100 million won (approximately $83,000) and if you include the wreath, the amount goes over 150 million won (approximately $124,000).”