AceShowbiz - INFINITE's L a.k.a. Myungsoo is officially leaving Woollim Entertainment after ten years with the agency. The 27-year-old singer/actor's contract with the agency ended this year and he announced on Monday, August 19 that he's not going to renew it.
The K-Pop idol confirmed his departure from the agency in a handwritten letter posted on Instagram. "Hello, this is Kim Myung Soo...L," he began. "I want to bow my head in apology for greeting you for the first time in awhile with this unfortunate news, and I want to express gratitude for always giving me warm support. My heart feels heavy at the thought that this news that I am going to share might be hurtful to INSPIRIT (Infinite's fan club), who have always given me generous love."
"With last week as the end, my contract with Woollim has expired," he continued. Myungsoo said he "made a difficult decision" to leave the agency "after a lot of thought," but eventually he "decided to stand on my own" because he felt the need "to start the new challenge."
Calling his time as a member of INFINITE "happy times," the "My Lovely Girl" star expressed his gratitude to his fans and bandmates. He went on assuring fans that he's not exiting the band despite his departure from Woollim. "I want to once again express my gratitude and our promise that we will always be together," he wrote.
"Although we may be together in somewhat different forms and ways than before, there is no change in the trust that we will support each other and be together," he added. "In addition, I can continue with the INFINITE members, and I am going to do my best to be with the members at any place when I am needed."
Myungsoo also thanked Woollim's "head Lee Jung Yeop, vice president Lee Ji Young, and all Woollim family who have allowed me to have unforgettable and valuable times and happiness." He promised that "as much as you have supported me, I will work hard with a grateful heart to greet you after improving further."
Following Myungsoo's announcement, Woollim has also released a statement confirming his departure. "Our exclusive contract with INFINITE member L (Kim Myung Soo), who has been with us for the past nine years, ended on August 18, 2019 (contract expiration date)," it explained. "Recently ahead of his exclusive contract expiration, we had in-depth discussion with our artist L (Kim Myung Soo) for a long time, and after careful discussion, the decision was made to not renew."
"We express our sincere gratitude to L (Kim Myung Soo), who has been together with us for the long time of nine years since 2010. We ask that you show continuous love to L (Kim Myung Soo), and we will be sincerely cheering on his future," it continued to read.
Addressing the future of INFINITE, the company stated, "In addition, as the members have strong determination about group activities, INFINITE's disbandment is not being considered at all. Regarding the direction of INFINITE's future activities, they will be carried out after sufficient discussion in the future as there are members currently serving in the military."
Myungsoo has since received enormous support from fans worldwide. "I'm sad on the news of Myungsoo of Infinite leaving Woolim.. but at the same time proud that he chose his own career and happiness. I think that's the best for him. I respect that. Hoping everyone will understand his decision. Let us be strong Insprits," one reacted to the news on Twitter.
Another added, "Knowing how sucks woollim treat infinite as a whole, im so happy myungsoo decided to challenge a new journey esp in the acting industry im so happy knowing you'll grow even to a more great person than u r rn. Thank u fr still staying & cherish infinite by ur side, myungsoo ah."
One other decided to see the bright side, "as much as this is heartbreaking, our consolation is woollim and Myungsoo have only good words for each other." Someone else said, "Respect Myungsoo decision ... He left Woollim not INFINITE and he always be INFINITE L forever."
"This is sad, but I support your decision. I'm just sad that I won't be able to see Infinite as a whole. Best wishes to your future endeavors. You'll always be part of Infinite," read a comment on Myungsoo's post. Another similarly said, "Thankyou for being honest Myungsoo I respect your decision and will always support you! You'll always be an INFINITE member."