Meet Gary, Former Cast Member of Running Man
Kang Hee-gun (강희건) or, better known by his stage name, Gary (개리) was born on February 24, 1978, and is a South Korean rapper, songwriter, record producer, entrepreneur, and television personality. He is also known as part of the former hip-hop duo Leessang with his Partner Gil. He debuted in 2002 and has produced a total of eight albums and had several hits.
Gary became better known after he joined Running Man as co-host along with six other original cast members. He joined in 2010 and filmed his last episode in October, 2016. He said that he wants to focus on his music career, but after announcing his decision to leave the show, there has been some news about him, his marriage, and his group, Leessang.
In this article, Byeol Korea will tell you all of Kang Gary’s latest news about his career and his personal life. So keep on reading!
Kang Gary Appeared as a Guest on Running Man
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🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻♀️🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻 [런닝맨 제324회 '굿바이 개리' 촬영 현장 사진] 런닝맨 7인의 마지막(?) 단체 사진. 런닝맨 제324회 오늘 오후 6시30분 방송. 🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻♀️🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻 [Shooting spot picture of RunningMan Ep.324 'Goodbye Gary'] The last(?) group photo of 7 RM members. RM Ep.324 today at 6:30pm KST on #SBS. ••• #BehindTheScenes #RunningMan #RM #런닝맨 •••
On November 6, 2016, the last Running Man episode of with Kang Gary as part of the permanent cast and half of the “Monday Couple” hit the airwaves. It was episode 324 when the rest of the permanent cast made their last goodbyes to the entertainer before he officially left Running Man. This episode was titled Running Man Who Can’t Break Up, Gary Who Can’t Leave, and was an intentional pun from LeeSsang‘s (Gary’s group) hit song entitled Girl Who Can’t Break Up, Guy Who Can’t Leave. Gary became the third permanent member to leave the show, after Descendants of the Sun‘s star Song Joong Ki and After School’s Lizzy.
The episode started off with a sad atmosphere as the sad song played and flashes of Gary’s memorable scenes on Running Man synchronized over the sad melody. Although Running Man is known to bring laughter to its weekly viewers, the sadness was apparent in the faces of the six remaining members when they saw that there were only six seats on the set.
Ji Hyo was the one who seemed saddest, she soon had eyes filled with tears as she talked about her feelings over Gary’s departure. After the dinner session, Gary headed back to his studio and was surprised that the six members had left him gifts and letters. All the gifts made Gary teary-eyed but he burst into laughter when he opened Haha’s gift — a box filled with dried squids.
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🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻♀️🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻 [런닝맨 NOW] 런닝맨 제325회 <결핍 여행> 서울에서 촬영 중. 개리를 떠나보낸 런닝맨 멤버 6인의 '결핍 여행' 레이스 진행 예정. 런닝맨 제325회 11월 13일 일요일 오후 6시30분 방송. 🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻♀️🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻 [ RunningMan NOW ] RM Ep.325 <Deficiency Travel> is filming now in Seoul. 6 RM members will have a travel race in lack of something. RM Ep.325 on Nov. 13 at 6:30pm KST on #SBS. ••• #BehindTheScenes #RunningMan #RM #런닝맨 •••
All members and staff had already said goodbye to Gary the previous week, but it turns out that in the depths of their hearts, they still weren’t willing to let go of him.
In this episode, members of Running Man went on a trip to fill their emptiness, one where they had a very low budget, a car that had a warning light on, and a cellphone with only 7% battery left. In addition to these difficult conditions, they also had to complete a special mission with Gary. They had to track Gary’s whereabouts, convince him to take part in the mission, and ask him to buy snacks and give money.
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🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻♀️🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻 [런닝맨 제325회 '결핍 여행' 촬영 현장 사진] 개리 작업실에서 개리를 다시 만난 런닝맨 멤버들. 런닝맨 제325회 오늘 오후 6시30분 방송. 🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻♀️🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻 [Filming spot picture of RunningMan Ep.325 'Deficiency Travel'] RM members meet Gary again at Gary's workroom. RM Ep.325 today at 6:30pm KST on #SBS. ••• #BehindTheScenes #RunningMan #RM #런닝맨 •••
At the end of the previous episode, the information was given that Gary would return for the next episode. At the end of the episode, the message said, “That’s the beautiful farewell to’Running Man’ and Gary… is that according to you?” Then Gary’s face appeared along with the phrase “Don’t do this !!! Leave me alone! You’re outrageous” and then the word ‘Continued …‘ appeared.
Running Man‘s producer, Lee Jin-hwan, also explained, “As seen in the preview last week, Gary will appear in the November 13 show. We did a farewell for him, but this separation is not forever, so we stick to it to the end. can think of Gary as the episode’s first guest star with the remaining six members without him. He was given a secret mission and I hope you watch the show.”
In this episode, The loyal Running Man audience was invited to reminisce with the presence of superpower owners such as Yu-ames Bond, Detective Jin, Kwang-vatar and others. In the beginning, each member had to carry out a different mission. For each success in the mission, there would be an increase in the member’s level of strength.
In the middle of the mission, Gary appeared with the power of sudden cloning, surprising the Running Man cast, as well as the audience. Jong-kook and other members wanted to defeat Gary and his four clones. Unfortunately, Jongkook’s determination came to nothing as he was removed from the game because of Jaesuk’s ten-minute death-note.
Bignose Sukjin, who was able to manipulate his death, was finally completely defeated. Gary’s instincts kept him from elimination after Sukjin almost tore his name. Just after successfully eliminating Sukjin, Gary was also eliminated. Jihyo made good use of his strength to defeat Gary, who was unmatched by his four twins.
On April 6, the two members of the vocal duo Leessang parted ways. Just recently, Leessang Company, the private management company that was founded by Gil and Gary, released an official statement confirming that they have stopped doing business. This also means that the hip-hop duo will cease to exist.
A former employee of Leessang Company surprisingly revealed that there are no more employees working for the management company. The former employee also added that it is most likely that the management company existed for the sake of the profit that it received from the duo’s music recordings.
Ever since the duo’s single, Kaleidoscope, was released in 2015, they decided to focus more on their solo promotions. When that happened, most of the rumors and speculations regarding the true cause of the split suggested that it was all about the differences in their personalities, as well as the controversies regarding their company building.
Another insider also went on to reveal that the two didn’t really have a good working relationship with each other, especially during times of music recording promotions. Gil didn’t even know that Gary was married, sowing a lack of closeness in their relationship.
For now, there still hasn’t been an official confirmation regarding the disbandment of Leessang. Perhaps it is the best point of action for the two to finally put an end to the business operations of the Leessang Company. It might also be a gradual process done by Gil and Gary to not deal a heartbreaking and surprising blow to their fans which have supported them throughout their successful career in the K-pop industry.
Gary’s Solo Comeback
On August 3, 2016, Gary’s agency, Yangbans Nation confirmed, “On August 7 at 6 p.m., Gary will release his new digital single “Sun” through major online music sites. Gary will be more active in the second half of this year with the release of his new song.”
This represented his first comeback in a year, since his single Gomin had been released. The new song was a hip-hop/R&B track featuring distinctive musical colors.
Gary previously made a surprise announcement about the new song on his Chinese Weibo, with cool teaser images from the sea. His waiting fans were curious about what kind of music Gary would be releasing.