No love at home? No worries, Rain's still a mega Asian star
K-pop star Rain may no longer be popular in Korea, but he's still a favourite in other countries
Is K-pop star Rain over the hill?
Yes, on his home turf.
The 34-year-old singer-actor's dipping popularity in South Korea has been glaring.
In 2014, his last studio effort, Rain Effect, was a washout. The album's singles, 30 Sexy and La Song, failed to make the Top 10 on major charts Naver, Daum and Melon.
And his fellow countrymen haven't showed much love for his recent drama projects either.
Both his TV series, My Lovely Girl (2014) and Come Back Alive (2016), fared poorly in Korea's nationwide viewership ratings.
But he is not done with showbiz.
While he has been outshone by younger and fresher faces in Korea, Rain, who topped Time magazine's Most Influential People in the World poll in 2006, 2007 and 2011, is still a force to be reckoned with in other parts of Asia, particularly in Hong Kong and China.
We look at how he stays red hot in the international scene.
In July, at prestigious Chinese music awards ceremony MTV Asia Music Gala 2016, Rain went home as one of the night's biggest winners with the Best Overseas Artist award.
His current concert tour, The Squall, was sold out in Hong Kong and in Chinese cities including Guangzhou, Shanghai, Wuhan, Shenyang and Changsha.
And good news for Rain's fans in Singapore: He will be performing at Resorts World Sentosa next month.
Expect a spectacular show complete with dazzling visuals.
In an interview with video platform Tencent, Rain said: "For this concert tour, our team has put in a lot of effort for production and stage design.
"There will be 'rain' as well as some laser effects."
Last year, Rain's first Chinese television drama production, the 68-parter Diamond Lover, reportedly raked in $6 billion won (S$7 million).
Diamond Lover, in which he plays a cold, unfeeling rich businessman, was a huge commercial success in China, topping eight streaming platforms and chocking up more than 7 billion views online.
While Rain was already a household name among Hallyu fanatics, this drama won him China audience.
In an interview with Chinese web portal ent163.com, he said he enjoyed filming Diamond Lover as the pace was comparatively more relaxed than Korea's.
"I feel I can adapt more to the filming culture in China," he said.
"In Korea, we usually shoot our dramas as they air, so actors very often have to pull all-nighters.
Rain cited veteran Chinese stars Jackie Chan and Jet Li as his idols and "hopes to work with more Chinese directors in the future".
He has appeared in high-profile Chinese variety shows such as Happy Camp and Hurry Up, Brother (China's version of Running Man).
Rain's second Chinese TV series, Endless August, co-starring Victoria Song from K-pop girl group f(x), will be released next year.
FACE OF TOURISM
At the peak of his popularity between 2006 and 2011, Rain ventured into Hollywood, starring in action flicks such as Speed Racer (2008) and Ninja Assassin (2009).
And despite focusing his sights on China in recent years, he hasn't entirely given up on the Western entertainment world.
Last December, he was appointed the official tourism ambassador of Queensland and the face of QPop, a new tourism marketing campaign that aims to entice more Korean and other Asian travellers to visit the Great Barrier Reef state.
"It is an honour to come to Queensland for this opportunity," Rain told content distributor RedRobot.org during his trip to Australia.
"There is a lot of culture in Queensland, it is very pretty with nature. It is the perfect place to enjoy your holiday.
"I tried different food, and I especially enjoyed the Eat Street Markets. I had a really good time there, eating nice food and meeting people."
Last month, Rain was spotted in Los Angeles at Los Angeles County Museum of Art's annual Art + Film Gala, attended by a glitzy crowd that included Hollywood A-listers such as Bradley Cooper, Gwyneth Paltrow, Salma Hayek and Brie Larson.
WHAT: Rain Tour in Singapore The Squall
WHERE: Resorts World Ballroom, Resorts World Convention Centre
WHEN: Dec 30, 7.30pm
TICKETS: $118 to $338 from Sistic (6348-5555 or www.sistic.com.sg)