Who was the first Korean male to star in a leading role in a Hollywood film? That would be RAIN, the Korean pop star known was the Justin Timberlake of Asia. We knew he was going to be big back in 2006 when he was voted #1 to the TIME 100 poll, beating out everyone else in the world that was thrown on the ballot. Fast forward three years later and we found RAIN kicking his way into Ninja Assassin, produced by the guys who brought the Matrix Trilogy. What RAIN represents is the future of entertainment because the economics dictate such. With the advent of digital undermining the traditional Hollywood business model, Hollywood has to seek out new ways to expand their reach and better monetize their products. Asia is the new frontier, but RAIN wasn’t necessarily the first guy to build that bridge to several billion people across the Pacific for Hollywood. There was of course Jackie Chan, Jet Li and others who found themselves as the first set of Asians in co-leading roles of big budget films. It’s obvious that Hollywood is trying to identify someone who has a huge following and leveraging their fame to expand their overall reach. What RAIN has done is open the possibilities for other Koreans to venture into Hollywood and perhaps someday, well be cheering on our version of Slumdog Millionaire. Someday we’ll look back and say that guys like John Cho and RAIN were the ones who put Koreans on the Hollywood radar, and that’s why RAIN is #3 on our top ten list of most influential Korean(-Americans) for 2009.