No matter how crazy the past year was, you wouldn’t ever know it by looking at our cover stories – and stars – of 2020. Take a look back at #legend’s print, fashion and digital cover stars of the year including Asian and K-pop royalty, Hollywood hot shots and ones to watch worldwide.
Talented, beautiful and humble Korean actress Min-young Park (aka Rachel Park) had her big break in the entertainment industry when she first appeared on the sitcom High Kick in 2006. She has since become the household name in South Korea, known for her leading roles in TV dramas like Sungkyunkwan Scandal (2010), Healer (2014) and What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim? (2018).
Hee-yeon Ahn, better known as Hani, is a Seoul-born actress and singer from K-pop group EXID. The group shot to fame in 2014 after a sexy fan-shot video of Hani and the group performing the song “Up & Down” went viral – three months after they initially released it. It wasn’t long before Hani was appearing on the top variety shows, capturing the hearts and minds of fans for her down-to-earth personality and positive energy.
A household name in the UK, multi-platinum-selling singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding boasts a repertoire of hits. She’s received two Grammy nominations, a Golden Globe nomination and two Brit Awards, with sales in excess of 15 million albums and 14 billion streams worldwide.
Chinese-Scottish model and Hong Kong ‘It’ girl Fiona McLeish’s face can be seen in massive campaigns on some of the city’s most prominent billboards. When she’s not socialising with the likes of Pharrell Williams, Takashi Murakami or Jason Mraz, she’s often with her husband and streetwear icon, Kevin Poon.
Yura made her debut in 2010 joining the K-pop group, Girl’s Day, who gained a great deal of momentum and popularity over the years. Girl’s Day marked its place as one of the leading K-pop groups of the era after becoming popular with songs including “Expectation”, “Female President” and “Something”. Now she sets off towards another one of her dreams – to become a top actress.
Colorado-born singer Ailee (Amy Lee) made her first Korean TV appearance in 2011 as a trainee in a reality show called Singer and Trainee, capturing the hearts of everyone with her powerful vocals and flawless stage manners. After winning most of the new artist awards with her debut single “Heaven”, Ailee continued to build on her reputation as one of the most powerful female vocalists in Korea with songs including “U&I”, “Don’t Touch Me” and “I Will Go to You Like the First Snow”.
Singer and actress Hyomin (aka Sun-young Park) first debuted as a member of K-pop group T-ara, which rose to stardom with their catchy songs and choreography. Meanwhile, actress Hee-jung Kim, already 20 years into her career, became well-known for her work in the children’s TV series, Magic Kid Masuri. Along with her acting career, Hee-jung has been in the spotlight for her exotic looks, gaining countless fans online and becoming an icon for fashion and beauty.
First discovered at the age of 14, Kate Moss‘s legendary career spans more than three decades. Her secret? Rather than following trends, she sets them, inspiring legions with her effortless style and natural looks. Balancing the launch of her own talent agency, designing her own handbag and clothing collections, and continuing her reign as one of the most sought-after models worldwide, she remains one of the faces of fashion.
Respectively an actor and musician based in Taiwan, Sunny Wang and Dizzy Dizzo went from being a couple to becoming a family. Together, they started their lifestyle brand The Empire and continued collaborating with their YouTube channel, The Sundizz Show, giving us a glimpse into in their private day-to-day lives.
#legend100 influencers Ruth Chao, Jessica Jann, Feiping Chang and Steph Shek challenged all preconceived notions and adopted a masculine front to match their heavy metal jewellery from Bulgari. Gender is never black-and-white – and that’s exactly why they’re breaking free from assumptions and archetypes, embracing the man in the woman with the fierceness of femininity.
Competitive swimmer Yvette Kong Man-yi, who has broken numerous swimming records since the age of 13 and who represented Hong Kong at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, is certainly no stranger to the spotlight. Having graced countless covers of local and international newspapers’ sports sections, Kong makes her fashion cover debut with #legend, where she plunges into the ocean of style.
South Korean actress Go Joon-hee is one of few who has risen to icon status after chopping her hair into a daring bob in 2012, bringing about what is now known as “Go Joon-hee Short Hair Syndrome” – sending women across Korea and beyond rushing to their hairdressers for the same pixie cut. As a style icon, the actress has had countless outfits documented in the press, setting trends both on the red carpet and off.
Most people know Jeannie Chan for the numerous roles she has portrayed for TVB, be it the high-school sweetheart in her TV debut Never Dance Alone or the genius (albeit self-centred) lawyer in Raising the Bar. While she can pull off vastly different personas on-screen, off-screen she’s as multi-faceted as her diverse acting experience, if not more so.
With almost a decade of acting credits to his name, actor and Asian heartthrob Jasper Liu is a veteran when it comes to portraying boyfriend roles. There’s his first leading role in the critically acclaimed 2013 TV series The Patisserie with No Name, a Chinese-language drama where he plays a happy-go-lucky backpacker who gets stranded and starts to work at a patisserie, where he falls in love with the pastry chef.
He may be the son of renowned actress, scriptwriter and film director Sylvia Chang, but Oscar Wang is also a serial entrepreneur with a diversified portfolio of businesses across different industries. A multi-talented artist who has collaborated with top international fashion labels such as Fendi, he’s also a Fashion Week regular who’s regularly seated in the front row of major fashion shows.
Having moved to Boston from Tianjin when she was just 16 years old, Jessica Wang studied finance in university and landed a banking job at Morgan Stanley – running a fashion blog on the side. Ultimately, she chose shoots over spreadsheets in 2014 when her blog, NotJessFashion, began matching her full-time income. Since then, Wang has worked with the biggest names in the world of luxury including brands in fashion, jewellery and cars.
Yes, 2020 is a year that many of us are ready to leave behind. But despite all its woes, it has brought with it unprecedented change and thus, immense growth. James Wong, Irisa Wong, Mayao, Afa Lee, Louise Wong and Jamie Xia of our #legend100 take a moment to reflect on their year of self-discovery.
Heading off to Los Angeles as an aspiring actor, Jake Picking has gone from strength to strength. He played Rock Hudson, a closeted gay man who rose through the ranks of the studio system epitomising masculinity as a heartthrob in movies opposite Elizabeth Taylor and Doris Day in Ryan Murphy’s Hollywood. He will also star in Top Gun: Maverick alongside Tom Cruise among other upcoming projects with movie greats such as Diane Keaton.
Molly Chiang insists she’s “just a girl sharing her life”. But what a life it is: for the past four years the Taiwanese social media sensation has been documenting her love for fashion, art, fitness, nature and more to a following that’s grown to more than 714,000 on Instagram alone. While the fast-paced lifestyle and intense pressure only seem to fuel her more, Chiang credits her success to her strong sense of self.
Singer, songwriter, rapper, model and now Hollywood actor, Nichkhun is a man of many talents. The Thai-American, who’s currently based in South Korea, gives us some insight into life as a K-pop idol.