If you live in America, it’s likely that your view on media is very American-skewed – this is only natural and there’s nothing wrong with it. It simply makes sense that when you hop online or turn on the TV, the content you see is, by and large, homegrown. The same can be said for many countries as well, so this definitely isn’t a US-centric phenomenon.
Even with the inclusion of the Internet into the realm of media, it’s likely the same thing is still happening. You go on YouTube or Entertainment sites and see content that’s specific to your viewing area. After all, what would you do with an un-dubbed episode of a German daytime talk show? This doesn’t mean you aren’t missing out, though. More and more content from across the globe is being brought into the American mainstream. This is especially true of Asian media; extremely apparent with Warner Bros. acquisition of Korean TV and film streaming site DramaFever. America has slowly been tapping into Asian markets over the years, more specifically the Japanese and Korean media industry, and now they’re going to capitalize on it.
The good news here is that you now have a new set of TV series you might get to put on your to-watch list – or, better yet, a whole new slew of beautiful women to fantasize about. Here are 12 Asian beauties who we’d love to see start working in the United States.
12. Maki Goto
Maki Goto is a Japanese singer-songwriter and former actress. Part of Japan’s idol culture as a member of the group “Morning Musume,” Goto was the only third generation member to join in 1999 and graduated from the group in 2002. From there she went on to perform solo until 2007, when she took a year long hiatus but returned to the music industry.
Goto is known for her sexy and sultry image when performing, which is a very drastic image change compared to her time as a young girl in her original band. She has released 11 albums as of November 2011. The singer has also released nine photo books featuring both professional and candid shots.
11. Park Shin Hye
The beautiful and talented Park Shin Hye is a South Korean actress, though she can also dance, sing and occasionally models. She has become one of the most recognizable actresses in South Korea because of her inclusion on mega-hit dramas like You’re Beautiful, Heartstrings, and The Heirs. She has won awards for these roles both internationally and locally.
Proving she’s more than just a pretty face, Park graduated from Chung-Ang University earlier this year and now holds a degree in Theater and Film, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award as an honorary school ambassador. The actress is also known for her charity work, acting as a goodwill ambassador and participating in acts of generosity in countries like Nepal and Ghana.
10. Park Min Young
Another famous actress, Park Min Young was born in Seoul, South Korea. While her first acting job was a small role in an SK Telecom commercial, Park saw stardom when she snagged a role in a hit Korean sitcom Unstoppable High Kick! in 2006. After the show’s success, Park grabbed role after role, all of which earned her incredible praise.
Her most notable part was playing a cross-dressing young woman in the television drama Sungkyunkwan Scandal. The dexterity it took to play the role earned her wide recognition in the Korean acting community, and her success was only further catapulted by starring in the hit drama City Hunter, in 2011.
9. Bianca Bai
Bianca Bai is the perfect example of a model-turned-actress. This Taiwanese beauty became known in the Asian modeling world relatively quickly and started her career soon after graduating high school. Her Westernized looks and gorgeous body transfixed the Asian fashion and modeling world for years until she began to focus her attention on acting.
Many models try to transition into a more notable career but fail – this cannot be said of Bai. She was nominated in 2010 for the category Best Leading Actress in a Television Series at the 45th annual Golden Bell Awards, proving she was more than just a pretty face.
8. Yang Jin-Sung
Yang Jin Sung is a newer and more youthful face present in the Korean acting community, having only been active since 2010. She received relative praise for her debut film role in the movie Wedding Dress, and then went on to play supporting character roles in several Korean drama series.
Yang finally saw large success as the lead actress in the drama series Bride of the Century. This 2014 release saw Yang play two leading roles as Na Doo Rim and Jang Yi Kyung, two very different women who look exactly alike. The drama’s popularity was large enough for broadcasting rights to be sold here in America, which is great news – how else could you truly experience Yang’s beauty?
7. Erika Sawajiri
Erika Sawajiri’s traditional and Westernized beauty has been a point of interest for those who are fans of her work. Not only does she act and model, she is also a singer, recording under the pseudonyms Kaoru Amane and Erika.
Sawajiri saw success for the 2005 movie Pacchigi! and became lauded as an extremely talented actress after working five years to help make her 2011 film Helter Skelter. One reason Sawajiri is so intriguing though, is her affinity for controversy. Between rude interviews, dating scandals and suspected drug use, Sawajiri has had her fair share of bad press in Japan – although that’s nothing new for American starlets, so she’d fit right in.
6. Lin Chi-ling
Lin Chi-ling is a Taiwanese star, best known for her work as a model and actress. Sometimes referred to as “The First Face of Taiwan” in the press, Chi-ling is well-known for her facial beauty and equally gentle personality. Because of her natural and physical perfection, Chi-ling has been an official spokesperson for China Airlines and Longines.
Her success became even more prevalent after becoming a television star, becoming a hostess for shows and events such as the TVBS-G LA Mode News and the Golden Melody Awards. She has since gone on to star in films like The Treasure Hunter as the lead actress. Fame like hers is unprecedented in Taiwan and Chinese media, and her sudden success has been coined by both the media and scholars as the “Lin Chi-Ling Phenomenon.”
5. Zhang Ziyi
Zhang Ziyi might be considered cheating to include – she actually won awards internationally for her role in the film Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, which was indeed released in America. That’s not her only claim to fame in her home country, though. In China, Ziyi is accredited as being one of the most popular and easily recognized actresses in the country, and is celebrated as one of the country’s “Four Dan Actresses.”
A poll produced by FHM Taiwan in 2001 cited Ziyi as being the sexiest woman – not just in Asia, but in the entire world. She’s well-known for her many facets, as she can play characters that are cute and innocent, as well as demure and sexy. She may already have come to America once, but we’d love to have her back again sometime.
4. Bae Su Ji/Suzy
Bae Su Ji, known by her stage name Suzy, is a Korean idol that is best known in her home country and internationally for being part of Korean-Chinese idol group “miss A.” Suzy saw relative popularity as a group member, being a strong vocalist in the four member pop ensemble, but she truly saw national success after she starred in the drama series Dream High.
After her drama success, Suzy became known as Korea’s sweetheart and was beloved by the entire country. Even now, Suzy is still an acclaimed idol and is considered an extremely talented singer, even at the age of 21. Her beautiful “girl next door” image has branded her as a commercial queen, and she has been rumored to be able to sell almost any item.
3. Lynn Hung
This fashion model is based on Hong Kong, though she was born in Nanjing, China. Lynn Hung is often called upon for photoshoots because of one asset she’s best known for – her breasts. While they might not be the largest you’ve seen, Hung is well known in China for having some of the most well-shaped and beautiful breasts in Asia.
Since 2008, Hung has expanded her career into acting and has continued to model, becoming the fourth best paid model in 2009. Hung has also recently branched into acting and has been featured in films like Hello Babies and Running Man. She was also the host of China’s Next Top Model for Cycle 5.
2. Ayumi Hamasaki
Fans of the international music sub-genre affectionately referred to as “J-pop” will know this star. Ayumi Hamasaki was essentially the Japanese superstar for quite some time in Japan and has been active in the Japanese music industry since 1993. She’s partially well-known in the country because of her rebel image. While a lot of Japanese music industry moguls like to produce very formulaic pop acts and singles, Hamasaki is dedicated to making her fans music that she feels is her art and craft.
This beautiful and bold entrepreneur has also started many other sub-projects aside from her music career. Her fashion brand MTRLG (Material Girl) was officially launched in 2001, and Hamasaki has been featured in official merchandise with Hello Kitty. Hamasaki continues to sing, even after she revealed in 2008 that she has gone completely deaf in her left ear.
1. Fan Bingbing
You actually might have seen this actress if you’re a fan of cinema – she’s appeared in American films like Lost in Beijing, Iron Man 3 and the most recent X-Men franchise. Fan Bingbing is known in East Asia as being both traditionally beautiful, but also having Westernized facial beauty that makes her popular in American markets.
It isn’t just Americans that love her looks, either. The Beijing News, China’s largest newspaper, listed her as the most beautiful woman in China in 2010. She is also a Chinese fashion icon. Fan has topped the Forbes China Celebrity 100 list for three years in a row – will she do it again in 2016?