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Girls Generation Director Accused of Plagiarizing DisneySea Design + Offers Apology

Credit: SMTOWN/YouTube Screenshot

Girls’ Generation officially marked its 15th anniversary with Forever1, but the single’s music video made people raise their brows.

After a five-year hiatus, Girls’ Generation officially came back with its single album and official music video for the track featuring the eight members of the group: Taeyeon, Tiffany, Sunny, Hyoyeon, Sooyoung, Yuri, Yoona, and Seohyun.

Kenzie, a longtime collaborator of the group and other SM Entertainment artists, served as the writer and producer of the song.

While the track immediately became a hit, the music video director was caught in the middle of hot water for reportedly plagiarizing a Tokyo DisneySea design.

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Girls’ Generation MV Director Apologizes

On her Instagram page (per Korea JoongAng Daily), director Shin Hee Won wrote a lengthy apology letter as she admitted to copying the aforesaid design.

She told her followers that she feels ashamed and apologetic for copying the design without permission. She explained that she searched for a number-related logo design as part of Girls’ Generation’s 15th anniversary. Among the references she found was the design made by DisneySea.

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Unfortunately, she reportedly did not check the source and proceeded in copying the design.

“Today, I verified that the design is a logo for Disney’s 15th anniversary in Japan, and I sincerely apologize for designing the set without thorough investigation or confirmation. I will make sure to thoroughly research and check before production to prevent something like this from happening again,” she continued.

Director Shin Hee Won also extended her apologies to Girls’ Generation members and SM Entertainment for causing the trouble.

Where Did Allegations Start?

The plagiarism issue began when Japanese fans compared both designs on Twitter.

One user (@Kabosun3) shared a side-by-side image of the two on August 12 and highlighted the similarities between the logos.

Some slammed SM Entertainment and blamed the company for the mistake. But some fans defended the agency and said that it surely had no idea what happened.

Amid the issue, Girls’ Generation is enjoying the spotlight again as the track topped the iTunes albums charts in 31 countries.

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