He’s without doubt the most famous League of Legends player – and arguably the most famous esports player – on the planet. And in his home country of South Korea, Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-hyeok’s fame is transcending gaming and he is being dubbed a mainstream celebrity.
In a viral tweet from esports writer Tyler ‘Fionn’ Erzberger, Faker was dubbed one of the ‘Elite Four’ personalities in South Korea alongside the Oscar-winning Parasite director Bong Joon-ho, Tottenham Hotspur footballer Son Heung-min, and boy band BTS. Now, in an interview with Korizon’s Ashley Kang, the T1 mid laner has reacted to the overwhelming response to the tweet that sees him considered one of the country’s biggest stars.
“The people that were mentioned alongside [me] are all international superstars,” Faker says. “And I myself am a bit famous overseas, too. I always had a bit of pride about it, but it feels good to be mentioned [with them].” He goes on to add that it’s nice to hear people referring to him as a superstar, but that he just wants to continue to focus on being a professional gamer.
The Elite 4 of South Korea pic.twitter.com/VjlS31pK2c
— The Esports Writer (@FionnOnFire) February 10, 2020
Later in the interview, he also reveals that because of his stardom he feels a “responsibility as a representative of esports.”
Three-time Worlds winner Faker’s success, as well as his nation’s love for esports and gaming, has seen him put on a pedestal with South Korea’s most famous faces. Despite this, he appears to be staying humble enough to continue focusing on being exceptional at LoL and acting as an ambassador for esports.
He is just another example of how the most popular members of the gaming community or now seeing their notoriety spill over into the mainstream, as has happened with the streaming world’s biggest star, Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins.