South Korea’s Song-Song golden couple are getting a divorce – here’s what we know

South Korean celebrities Song Joong-ki and Song Hye-kyo at the height of Descendants of the Sun’s fame in 2016.
Yonhap via Reuters

South Korean actors Song Joong-ki and Song Hye-kyo are getting a divorce, after slightly more than one-and-a-half years of marriage.

In a statement on Thursday (June 26), Song Joong-ki’s lawyers announced that the actor had filed for divorce from his wife just the day before.

Known in the media as the Song-Song couple, South Korea’s golden couple had also taken fans by surprise when they announced their plans for marriage in 2017.

Their wedding in October 2017, while kept private, garnered a high level of interest around the region, with journalists and paparazzi from as far as China live-streaming outside the wedding venue and capturing unauthorised images with drones.

Two of South Korea’s biggest stars, Song Joong-ki and Song Hye-kyo starred in romance drama Descendants of the Sun, which took Asia by storm in 2016.

Here’s what we know about the couple’s shocking split so far:

1) Wrapping up the marriage “smoothly”

According to Korea Herald, Song Joong-ki has said through his agency that the couple is hoping to settle divorce proceedings without issue.

“Rather than criticising one another and arguing over who is to blame, both of us hope that the divorce process can be wrapped up smoothly,” Song, 33, was quoted as saying in a statement.

He also declined going into details of the marriage, and asked for time to heal from the divorce.

“I ask for your understanding that it is difficult to go into details of my personal life. I will try to recover from the wounds and do my best to repay you through good productions as an actor,” he reportedly said.

2) “Differences in personalities”

On Thursday (June 27), Song Hye-kyo’s label UAA Korea blamed personality differences for the breakdown in her marriage.

According to a translation on entertainment site Allkpop, the 37-year-old’s label said: “Song Hye Kyo has decided to proceed with divorce procedures after a lengthy debate.

“The reason for their separation is the differences in their personalities, and the two ultimately came to this decision as they were unfortunately unable to overcome their differences,” the label wrote.

UAA Korea added that it cannot reveal more details of the celebrities’ personal matters.

An officially released photo of the couple to announce their marriage.
Weibo/Blossom Entertainment

3) Song Joong-ki’s label releases its own statement

The same Allkpop article also reported that Song Joong-ki’s agency apologised for bringing sad news to fans who rooted for the Song-Song couple.

Blossom Entertainment reportedly said: “Song Joong-ki and Song Hye-kyo have come to this decision to end their marriage after a serious discussion, and they are undergoing the legal procedures for divorce after an amicable settlement”.”

“We are deeply sorry to deliver such news to many who congratulated the couple on their marriage and cheered them on. We beg that you refrain from spreading any false rumors or thoughtless suspicions regarding the divorce. Once again, we apologise for bringing sad news,” it added.

4) Tabloids saw it coming

Signs of trouble in the couple’s marriage were reportedly seen as early as February this year, Korea Herald reported.

According to the English-language Korean news site, Chinese tabloids had speculated a breakup when Song Hye-kyo began to appear in public without her wedding ring.

 

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Song Hye Kyo at Incheon Airport heading to Singapore for Sulwhasoo event #songhyekyo #송혜교

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Malaysian site Xtra reported that fans had spoken up for the couple at the time, and criticised the media for jumping to conclusions.

In May Song Joong-ki seemed to silence some of those rumours by appearing in photos with his wedding ring on. He also mentioned his wife in a press conference and said that marriage gave him peace of mind.

However, just this month, the actress was again spotted without her wedding ring on while at Incheon Airport by herself. The news website reported that she had also deleted some photos of Song Joong-ki on her social media account.

5) Fans shocked by sudden announcement

As expected, news of the divorce has taken Song-Song supporters by surprise.

Many – especially those who were big fans of Descendants of the Sun – took to Twitter to express their disbelief and disappointment.

The #SongSongCouple hashtag started to trend again on the social media site on Thursday morning, as fans began to re-post iconic scenes from the drama and photos from the couple’s high-profile wedding.