According to local entertainment industry officials, tougher regulations are being rolled out but the demand for the two actors in China is higher than ever.
The State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television rolled out strengthened regulations for online video materials, cutting short the growth of local firms.
Last year, the price of Korean dramas reached as high as $280,000 per episode aided by online popularity, while the recently concluded “Pinocchio” set online view record and raised $5.6 million from China alone.
However, video contents distributed online will now be subjected to prerelease audit by the Chinese authorities, raising concerns that Korean dramas will be pirated.
While the market for Korean dramas may be facing an uncertain future, Chinese firms are said to be making generous offers to Lee and Kim.
Kim is said to have been offered a blank check after the hit drama “My Love from the Star,” while Lee's popularity keeps soaring with one hit after another.
In addition to the two, Park Hae-jin is also reaching for the stars in China.
According to reports the broadcasting rights for the cable drama “Bad Guys” was sold for $100,000 per episode as Park is being cast in the lead role.
Local industry official say the three are being flooded with offers from China despite the change in regulations.