Be it the K-Pop exponents like BTS and Black Pink or dramas like Train to Busan, South Korea has had a deep impact on global pop culture. Korean actors have successfully used their charm and talent to garner international recognition and accolades. Many young Korean actors as well as acting veterans have achieved legendary status among their fans around the world over the last couple of decades. The horizon of popular cinema is no longer bound by Hollywood and European movies, that’s for sure.
In this article, we’ll talk about 10 of the most famous (well it’s always arguable, isn’t it?) actors from Korea. We’ll take into account their popularity, the quality of their work, and the critical acclamation they’ve received, but mostly popularity, wink! Wink! Let’s start with the list of
Top 10 most famous Korean Actors in 2023.
Lee Min Ho
Instagram followers: 32.4 million, Net worth: $26 million, Latest work: Anastasia
Lee Min Ho has worn many hats successfully. He’s an actor, singer, model, and creative director. Thanks to his outstanding work as Gu Jun-Pyo in the 2009 TV series Boys Over Flowers, Lee Min Ho’s popularity spread like wildfire. This role also earned him the Best New Actor title at the 45th Baeksang Arts Awards. Lee-Min-Ho’s latest work was in Anastasia which was also his Hollywood debut. In the US he calls himself Lee Tae Ri.
Lee Jong Suk
Instagram followers: 25.5 million, Net worth: $32 million, Latest work: Decibel (2022), The Witch: Part 2. The Other One.
Like so many in the South Korean film industry, Lee Jong Suk started his career as a model before making a move to acting. He debuted as an actor in the 2010 drama “Prosecutor Princess”. Since then, Lee Jong Suk has starred in a number of widely popular dramas like “Pinocchio”, and “While You Were Sleeping”. He received the best actor title at the Baeksang Arts Award for his work in “Pinocchio”. His latest credits include Decibel and The Witch: Part 2.
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Kim Woo Bin
Instagram followers: 4.2 million, Net worth: $5 million, Latest work: upcoming movie Alienoid (2023)
Born on July 16, 1989, Kim Woo Bin is one of South Korea’s young sensations. His story is a truly inspiring one. Kim Woo Bin made his debut in the 2011 drama “White Christmas”. His role brought him quick fame. In the years that followed, he played significant roles in dramas like “School 2013”, and “The Heirs” and films like “Friend: The Great Legacy”. In 2015, he was forced to take a hiatus from acting owing to nasopharyngeal cancer. To the great relief of his fans, Kim Woo Bin made a comeback with a sequel to his award-winning drama, “The Heirs 2”
At the 49th Baeksang Arts Awards in 2013, Kim Woo Bin won the Best New Actor award for his performance in the film “Twenty.” He also won the Korean Drama Award for Excellence in Acting for his role in the drama “The Heirs” in 2014.
Kim Soo Hyun
Instagram: 14.2 million, Net worth: $117 million, Latest work: In the Absence
Apart from being one of the most popular South Korean actors, Kim Soo Hyun is also one of the highest-paid Korean actors ever. Born on February 16, 1988, Kim Soo Hyun made his debut in 2007 in the drama “Kimchi Cheese Smile”. His role was small but it set him up in the industry. His big break came as “Dream High” a 2011 Korean drama.
“My Love from the Star” is one of his most successful works. Some other significant works include “The Producers”, and “It’s Okay to Not Be Okay”.
He has received numerous awards for his acting, including the Baeksang Arts Award for Best TV Actor, the Grand Prize at the Korean Drama Awards, and the Blue Dragon Film Award for Best New Actor.
Ji Chang Wook
Instagram: 23.6 million, Net worth: $12 million, Latest work: Smile Again
Ji Chang Wook made his acting debut in 2006. However, it was his role in the 2011 drama “Warrior Baek Dong-soo” that earned him mainstream recognition in Korea. Since then, he has appeared in an array of successful dramas including “Healer,” “Suspicious Partner,” and “The K2.” While known especially for his television work, Ji Chang Wook has also acted in several films, including “Fabricated City” and “The Divine Fury.”
As far as awards and accolades are concerned, Ji Chang Wook is pretty well-decorated. He received the Grand Prize at the 2013 SBS Drama Awards for his role in “Empress Ki,” and the Excellence Award at the 2017 MBC Drama Awards for his performance in “Suspicious Partner.”
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Park Seo Joon
Instagram: 23.9 million, Net worth: $20 million, Latest work: upcoming movie, Concrete Utopia (2023)
Park Seo Joon made his acting debut in the 2011 drama “Dream High 2,”. It helped him put his first step in but the real breakthrough was his role in the drama “Kill Me, Heal Me” in 2015. He has since starred in many hit dramas, including “She Was Pretty,” “Fight for My Way,” “What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim,” and “Itaewon Class.” Park Seo Joon has also made multiple appearances on the big screen. He acted in films, such as “Midnight Runners” and “The Divine Fury.”
Park Seo Joon bagged the Best New Actor Award at the 50th Baeksang Arts Awards for his role in “A Witch’s Romance.” His performances in dramas such as “Itaewon Class” have also brought him many accolades. To top it off he is also known for his philanthropic work.
Lee Joon Gi
Instagram: 6.6 million, Net worth: $5 million, Latest work: Again My Life (2022)
Born on April 17, 1982, Lee Joon Gi is an actor, singer, and model. Having made his acting debut in 2001, Lee Joon Gi starred in many popular dramas, including “My Girl,” “Time Between Dog and Wolf,” and “Scarlet Heart: Ryeo.” His film credits include “The King and the Clown” and “The Villainess.”
Lee Joon Gi received the Best Actor Award at the 2008 Grimae Awards for his role in “Iljimae.” He also won the Excellence Award, Actor in a Drama Special, at the 2016 SBS Drama Awards for his performance in “Scarlet Heart: Ryeo.”
Lee Joon Gi got conscripted into the military in 2007 but it did not stop his career and he held on to his place in the limelight.
Park Bo Gum
Instagram: 2.9 million, Net worth: $5 million, Latest work: Seo Bok
Park Bo Gum was born on June 16, 1993. Having made his acting debut in 2011, Park Bo Gum gained recognition for his roles in “Reply 1988” and “Love in the Moonlight.” His film credits include “Coin Locker Girl” and “Seo Bok.”
Park Bo Gum’s collection of awards includes the New Star Award at the 2015 SBS Drama Awards and the Excellence Award, Actor in a Mid-length Drama, at the 2016 KBS Drama Awards. He was also the 2016 winner of the Grand Prize, Daesang, at the Asia Artist Awards for his work in “Love in the Moonlight.”
Park Bo Gum is known for his bright smile, kind personality, and exceptional acting skills, which have won him many fans around the world.
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Song Joong Ki
Instagram: 11.1 million, Net worth: $24 million, Latest work: Vincenzo
Born on September 19, 1985, Song Joong Ki gained popularity after playing the role of Gu Yong-ha in the 2010 historical drama “Sungkyunkwan Scandal.” From that point onwards, he never had to look back. he has starred in many popular dramas and films, including “Descendants of the Sun,” “Arthdal Chronicles,” and “Space Sweepers.”
Song Joong Ki’s award cabinet houses several awards, including the Best New Actor Award at the 2010 KBS Drama Awards and the Grand Prize, Daesang, at the 2016 KBS Drama Awards for his performance in “Descendants of the Sun.” most notably, he won the Best Actor Award at the 2018 Korean Popular Culture and Arts Awards for his role in “Vincenzo”.
Song Joong Ki is considered one of the most popular actors in Korea and has a significant international following as well. Despite his success, Song Joong Ki remains humble and committed to making great films and TV shows.
Song Joong Ki gained immense popularity for his lead role in the hit drama “Descendants of the Sun.” He is known for his good looks and charming personality. His latest work is the drama “Vincenzo,” where he plays the role of a mafia consigliere.
Instagram: 3.8 million, Net worth: $5-7 million, Latest work: Seo Bok
Gong Yoo is a South Korean acting veteran who was born on July 10, 1979. He started his journey in showbiz as a model in 2001 and he made his television debut in the same year in “School 4”. His first serious taste of fame was from his role in “Coffee Prince”. It also earned him critical acclaim.
Since then, Gong Yoo has appeared in many successful films and dramas, including “Train to Busan,” “Goblin,” and “The Age of Shadows.” His awards include the Best Actor Award at the 2017 Baeksang Arts Awards for his role in “Train to Busan”, a film that quickly became a global phenomenon.
Do you agree with our list of the top 10 most famous Korean actors? Whom did we miss?