Who is Hyun Bin?
Hyun Bin is an ace Korean film and TV actor known for his romantic roles in films such as ‘Late Autumn’ and ‘My Name is Kim San Soon’. Born and brought up in Seoul, the national capital of South Korea, he wasn’t really interested in making a career in acting at first, but the compliments he got for his good looks compelled him to try and he finished his bachelor’s degree in Theatre Studies to further hone his skills as an actor. In the 2003’s ‘Bodyguard’, Bin made his acting debut, and despite a slight backlash from his parents, he went on with a career in films, and eventually, after seeing their son climbing the ladder of success, the parents finally made their peace with Hyun. He climbed up to a nationwide fame with his role in the TV series ‘My Name is Kim San Soon’ in 2005. In the 2006 film ‘A Millionaire’s First Love’, which apparently became a worldwide sensation, he played Kang Jae-kyung and he became a universal heartthrob. Over the course of his career, he has won several awards at KBS Drama Awards, MBC Drama Awards and Baeksang Art Awards.
Childhood & Early Life
Hyun Bin was born in Seoul, South Korea to a typical Korean family on 25th September 1982. He was a curious, and a silent kid, who didn’t speak much and was quite keen on becoming a detective after watching a lot of detective TV series and films. He and his younger brother would play all around the house, enacting their favourite detectives.
Hyun Bin had a very average life, other than the fact that he was considered extremely good looking and in the high school, one of his seniors advised him to try acting and join the theatre club in the school. After he joined the theatre club, there was no stopping him as he had finally located his calling in life and he would practice for hours at a stretch, honing his skills.
One other major event happened during high school, one day when Hyun was riding bike with his friend, a man shouted from the back, asked them to stop. They stopped and he said that he was a talent manager and that Hyun must give him a call back. This was pure fate and luck, and Hyun just knew that he was destined to be there, in the entertainment industry, and then came the difficult part of convincing the parents.
Hyun talked to them, but they refused to let their son to go on the highly uncertain career path. They wanted a safe career for him, and it took 2 years for Hyun to persuade them. They advised him to enrol into the Chung-Ang University, which they thought was the best place to learn acting. Hyun did small jobs at the theatre productions within the university at first, but then eventually started acting, and kept improving his craft as the time passed.
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After college, came the hard phase, the auditioning. He did that and got a role in the series ‘Bodyguard’ in 2003 and several other small roles followed after that. This young boy with stunning looks and above average acting skills was becoming popular among the producers who catered mostly to the teenagers. And to make the best out of his boyish charm, he was casted in 2005 series ‘My Name is Kim Sam Soon’, the series became a rage among Korean youngsters and Hyun became a sensation. Not just his good looks, his acting prowess was being praised as well, getting him his career’s first award, the Top Excellence Award at the MBC Drama Awards.
After the success of ‘My Name is Kim San Soon’ came the film, which wasn’t received very well by the box office or the critics, but later went on to gain a cult following, ‘A Millionaire’s First Love’. The film, which started as a romantic comedy, ended on the lines of tragic romance films and is still considered to be one of the best works of Hyun’s career. Although the film performed poorly, Hyun was already a major Korean star by then.
‘The Snow Queen’, the next television series was a disaster as well, and this led Hyun to reconsider his choices and he decided to do some solid dramatic role after that in the TV series ‘The World that they Live in’ in 2008 and in the same year, his film ‘I am Happy’ was selected to be featured in the highly regarded Busan International Film Festival.
In the next year, Hyun had a major change of image as he played a sociopath in 2009’s ‘Friend, Our Legend’. The film was successful and Hyun’s portrayal was highly appreciated in the national and international media. It was a remake, and reportedly, Hyun saw the original film about 30 times in order to get in the skin of the character.
The 2010 series ‘Secret Garden’ brought Hyun a lot of appreciation and in that year’s award functions, Hyun had a great run. He received the SBS Drama Award and Baeksang Arts Award for his magnificent performance. The series was his grand comeback to the romantic comedy genre and Hyun became much more careful in choosing roles after that.
In 2011, Hyun starred in three films, one of them was ‘Late Autumn’ an English language drama which happened to be a remake of an old Korean film. The film was an international success and broke the record in China to become the highest grossing Korean film ever, and it still holds the record. Hyun also got the chance to walk the red carpet at the 61st Berlin International Film Festival, which he regards as the best experience of his life.
Hyun then appeared in the film ‘The Fatal Encounter’, a period drama which invited a lot of criticism, both for the screenplay and the performances and is now regarded as one of the biggest debacles of Hyun’s career. The backlash continued in 2015 with the critical failure of the TV series ‘Hyde, Jekyll, Me’.
Coming out of the bad career phase, he starred in 2017’s ‘Confidential Assignment’, a film in which he played a North Korean detective. The film was a success, both in terms of praises and box office returns.
Hyun Bin has been in relationship with many actresses, his first known girlfriend being Hwang Ji-hyun. They met during a shoot in 2006 and started dating right away.
He then started dating Song Hye-kyo in 2009 and just when the public thought the relationship was something serious, and could convert into a marriage, the couple announced their fallout in 2011.
Since 2016, Hyun has been in a relationship with the actress Kang So-ra.