Lee Soo-hyuk is a South Korean model turned actor popularly known as Lee. His impeccable fashion sense has made him a fashion icon among the Korean youth. Lee has walked the ramp and has posed for numerous high profile designers and photographers. His chiseled face and well-shaped body have made him the most sought-after model. Lee has given some marvelous performances in films such as ‘Runway Cop’ and ‘My Boss, My Teacher’, but the film that brought him recognition is ‘The Boy from Ipanema’. He has also appeared in many television dramas, but is best known for his phenomenal performance in ‘Vampire Idol’. The actor is currently serving his mandatory military service in South Korea.
Childhood & Early Life
Lee was born on May 31, 1988 in Gwacheon, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea. His family consists of his parents and a four year younger sister.
Lee always wanted to be an actor and for that, he started his preparations right from his school days. He played every outdoor sport and learned dancing and piano.
Lee started modeling for different campaigns during his middle and high school days itself. By the time he entered college, Lee had already made a name for himself in the fashion industry.
Lee was in his second year of college when he found it difficult to maintain a balance between his academic and professional life. His busy shooting schedule made him to skip his classes and later he decided to drop out of college.
Although Lee was studying films and theatre in college, the strict and disciplined environment at the department made him feel caged. This affected his creative quotient and also created a hindrance in his professional commitments.
Lee continued with his acting and modeling projects and eventually started his career in the respective fields.
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Lee started his career as a model first and then later became an actor. He made his modeling debut in a runway show for fashion designer Jung Wook-jun's collection in 2006. The show was sponsored and organized by Star J Entertainment Company.
After the show, Lee left the audience awestruck with his fashion styles and the way he carried himself on the ramp. In the latter half of 2006, Lee featured on the cover of some opulent lifestyle magazines such as GQ, Bazaar, and Elle.
Lee’s overnight success as a model soon bestowed him with titles such as the Best New Model and Best Dressed Model. Later he was signed by the entertainment agency, Sidus HQ.
After a successful modeling career, Lee then started to shift his focus to acting. His training in sports, swimming, and music helped him a lot in bagging roles in many films.
One more feature that attracted a lot of directors to Lee was his husky, low gruff voice that is completely contrasting to his looks. Lee finally made his debut in 2006 with the film ‘My Boss, My Teacher’.
After the huge success of his debut film, there was no looking back for Lee. He starred in films of different genres ranging from rom-com, horror to period.
By the end of 2013, Lee was signed by many directors for their next subsequent ventures. Right when his acting career was at the peak, Lee left Sidus and signed a contract with SJ Entertainment.
During this period, Lee secured a place in ‘13 Top Breakout New Male Faces’. The survey was conducted by Style Minutes, an online lifestyle and fashion magazine. Lee also walked the ramps in London and Paris fashion weeks.
In the beginning of 2017, Lee announced his temporary break from acting and modeling, for he had to complete the mandatory Military Service and serve as Public Officer thereafter.
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My Boss, My Teacher – Lee started his acting career with a guest appearance in this film which released on 19 January 2006. Although the film was a huge hit, Lee went unnoticed.
The Boy from Ipanema – This film is a milestone in Lee’s film career as Lee’s acting was regarded as matured and polished. The film is about a boy who loses his memory and forgets everything about his ex-girlfriend. He then recovers after meeting a girl and together they enter a fantasy world where they actually manipulate people’s dreams. This fantasy romantic film released on November 4, 2010, and was declared a super hit.
Runway Cop – This comedy film was released on May 30, 2012 and was produced by CJ Entertainment. This film is about a private detective who is shy, overweight and has a horrible sense of dressing. Then a supermodel, Kim Sun-ho, played by Lee, comes to his rescue and grooms him to be a classy spy.
Horror Stories 2 – This anthology, released in 2013, consisted of different stories of which Lee starred in the story named ‘The Cliff’. The story is about two friends who find themselves amidst a rocky island after they fall from a cliff.
White Christmas – This is a part of an eight episode omnibus series aired on KBS. The first episode was aired on January 30, 2011. Lee had a small role as Yoon Soo in this thriller murder mystery.
Deep Rooted Tree – Lee appeared in a guest role in this period television drama. Aired on SBS from October 5, 2011, Lee played as Yoon Pyeong.
Vampire Idol – Aired in 2011 on MBS, this sitcom family drama gave the much-awaited recognition to Lee in the television industry. The series is about a vampire prince who has a crush on a rockstar and in an effort to impress her he seeks help from one of the trusted servants. The servant, Soo-hyuk, played by Lee, has authentic vampire traits. Lee’s guitar and piano lessons during his school days helped him to make the character look natural.
High School King of Savvy – This is a 17 episode long romantic series, which was aired on June 16, 2014. Lee played Yoo Jin-woo who help the male lead win over his love interest.
Scholar Who Walks the Night – Lee once again played a vampire in this mini-series which was based on a Chinese comic. The audience got to see a different side of Lee as he played a negative role. Lee’s performance as an evil vampire, Gwi, was positively received by the audience. Aired from July 8 to September 10, 2015, the series won many awards including the best series of the year.
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Awards & Achievements
Korea Fashion Photographers Association (2007) – Lee was awarded the Best New Model for his association with top-notch designers.
25th Korea Best Dresser Swan Award (2008) – Lee won the Best Dressed Model in the model category.
29th Korea Best Dresser Swan Awards (2014) – Lee won the Best Dressed Male in the actor category.
MBC Drama Awards (2015) –Lee received the Best New Actor award in the debut actor category for ‘Scholar Who Walks The Night’.
Lee was in a relationship with actress Kim Min Hee for two years. They first met in July 2008 and ended their relationship in 2010. The couple parted ways due to the lack of time they had for each other.
Lee was rumored to be dating actress Hara and they have been spotted quite a few times hanging out together in Japan. However, they both denied the rumor.
Lee once stated that he doesn’t sharea cordial relationship with his younger sister due to their age and ideology differences.
Lee was stung by a jellyfish during the shoot of ‘The Boy from Ipanema’.