Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tasty Crushie Tuesday: Kim Soo-hyun

Kim Soo-hyun (Hangul: 김수현; hanja: 金秀賢; born February 16, 1988) is a South Korean actor, model and singer best known for his roles in the television dramas Dream High, Moon Embracing the Sun, and My Love from the Star, as well as the movies The Thieves and Secretly, Greatly.

I’ve liked Kim Soo-hyun since his Dream High days in 2011, and have had my eye on him and his work ever since. Every time he’s got a new drama or movie out, I perk up and take notice. And now that I’m watching You From Another Star, my Kim Soo Hyun addiction was switched on again.

* More info and photos after break...

Early life

Kim Soo-hyun was very quiet in middle school and no one expected him to enter the entertainment field. He first started acting in high school to change his reserved personality, but as he diligently memorized scripts and practiced for school plays, Kim's aspiration to truly become an actor grew. He enrolled in Chung-Ang University, majoring in Theater and Film Studies. He appeared in the musicals Grease and A Midsummer Night's Dream in 2003.


2007-2008: Television Career Beginnings

Kim made his television debut with a supporting role in the 2007 sitcom Kimchi Cheese Smile. He followed that with Peabody Awardee Jungle Fish, and Father's House, the latter a well-received 2-episode SBS special drama where he acted alongside veteran actor Choi Min-soo.

2009-2010: Rising popularity

He further raised his profile through his memorable turns as the younger version of the male lead characters in Will It Snow For Christmas? and Giant. He was in the 2009 short film Worst Friends by Namkoong Sun, which won the Best Film in Social Drama award at the Mise en Scène Short Film Festival. He also MC-ed the KM variety show 소년소녀가요백서 ("Sonyeon Sonyeo Gayo Baekseo") that same year.

2011: Dream High and singing career debut

He became a household name in 2011, playing a country bumpkin who turns out to be a musical genius in the teen drama Dream High. The only young actor in the main cast with no K-pop experience, Kim "studied song and dance for three months at JYP Entertainment so he could pull off the required scenes in the drama. He lived no differently from other trainees at JYP. He learned singing and dancing for hours every day" according to the production company. He recorded two songs for Dream High's soundtrack, his solo "Dreaming" as well the title track "Dream High" sang by the rest of the cast. He appeared in several music programs and concerts after the drama's completion and also made a cameo in the pilot episode of its second season.

2012: The Moon that Embraces the Sun and rise to fame

His popularity skyrocketed when he starred in hit period drama Moon Embracing the Sun, which was number one in its time slot and at its peak recorded viewer ratings of 42.2 percent.  He again contributed his vocals to the soundtrack, the traditional ballad "Only You" which topped digital music charts, and the more modern in composition "Another Way" released as a "Secret Version" single. He later won Best Drama Actor at the 2012 Baeksang Arts Awards, a win which was hotly debated as he was the youngest and newest actor among the nominees in his category, beating heavyweight veterans such as Han Suk-kyu, Shin Ha-kyun and Cha Seung-won. Upon receiving the trophy, Kim said, "I am very grateful for this moment, but I am ashamed as well. It’s like getting a lot of homework. I’ll keep trying to become a better actor in order to remain worthy of this award.

Since the success of Moon Embracing the Sun, Kim has set a new record for product endorsements by being the face of 17 products simultaneously, including a laptop, a camera, suits, cosmetics, sportswear, outdoor goods, a coffee franchise, pizza, ice cream, jelly, softdrinks, beer, fabric softener and a telecommunications company. According to entertainment industry insiders, Kim would have earned more than 6 billion won ($5.3 million) from his exclusive deals (most Korean A-list celebrities are said to earn 300 million to 350 million won). Also, due to the popularity of the said drama overseas, Kim has been appointed as the promotional ambassador for Korean tourism by the Korean Tourism Organization (KTO).

Kim made his big-screen debut in the star-studded heist film The Thieves, touted in the press as the Korean version of Ocean's Eleven. His character Jampano is the youngest member of a gang of Korean and Chinese thieves who team up to steal a diamond worth 40 billion won locked away in a casino in Macau. After joking that it helped him to focus on the role and the kissing scenes since his partner was Jun Ji-hyun, Kim said he was overwhelmed to be around so many big stars and felt lucky to be part of the film.

2013-present: Secretly, Greatly, My Love from the Star and international fame

In 2013 he was cast in Secretly, Greatly. Based on the comic by Hun, it follows the story of Won Ryu-hwan, the leader of a group of North Korean boy spies known for their handsome looks. Won has the ability to read people but acts like a countryside fool as his cover; his journey begins when he is abandoned by the North.

From 2013 to 2014 he is the leading actor of the SBS series My Love from the Star opposite The Thieves co-star Jun Ji-hyun. You Who Came From the Stars is a romance/comedy drama where Do Min-Joon an alien who landed on Earth 400 hundred years ago during the Joseon Dynasty. Do Min-joon has the ability to stop time for a minute, teleport, etc. Later on, he falls in love with Cheon Song-yi (Jun Ji-hyun), a present-day top actress.

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