Jeon Jong-seo

Jeon Jong-seo (born July 5, 1994) is a South Korean actress. She is best known for playing the role of Hae-mi in the 2018 acclaimed South Korean thriller Burning.[3][4][5][6]

Jeon Jong-seo
190501 전종서.jpg
Jeon at 55th Baeksang Arts Awards, May 2019
Born (1994-07-05) July 5, 1994 (age 26)
Seoul, South Korea[1]
EducationSejong University[2]
Years active2018—present
AgentMy Company
Korean name
Revised RomanizationJeon Jong-seo
McCune–ReischauerChun Ch’ongseo

Early lifeEdit

Jeon Jong-seo was born in Seoul, the only child in the family. Jeon and her family moved to Canada when she was a child. She attended a middle school in Canada, then returned to Korea and graduated from Anyang Arts High School.[7] After high school, she attended Sejong University majoring in film. Later, she was being expelled from university to pursue her acting career more freely.[8]


Jeon Jong-seo started her acting career after she joined a management agency and attended her first audition in August 2017, for director Lee Chang-dong's mystery flick Burning.[9] An inexperienced actor without any history in the entertainment industry, Jeon won the competition and landed the lead role at her very first audition, to play alongside recognized actors like Yoo Ah-in and Steven Yeun.[2]

Jeon initially did not seek the role of free-spirited Hae-mi in Burning because she thought she had no chance of getting it. The audition took place only three days after she joined her current talent agency.[10] Director Lee Chang-dong said about her audition, "When I saw her, she seemed to have this very childlike sense of innocence, but at the same time, she carried this sense of duality — as if something much bigger was on the other side of that innocence. So I thought she would be great to give Hae-mi the presence that is so central for the film — conveying that inner depth that this character has."[11] And, "Perhaps I was unconsciously drawn to the fact that everything was a 'first time' for her. Also, she has a face that makes people wonder what she's feeling and thinking. I think that made her a good fit for Haemi's character."[12] Lee also said that although the dance scene was in the screenplay, the dance movements were not planned or being rehearsed, but rather Jeon's spontaneous movements.[12]

In May 2018, the film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, where Jeon walked the red carpet.[13] The film received universal acclaim, competing for the Palme d'Or at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival,[4] and became the first Korean film to make it to the final nine-film shortlist of Best Foreign Language Film at the 91st Academy Awards.[5][6]

For her first role in the film, Jeon received international critical acclaim, including Best New Performer winner at the 2019 Asian Film Critics Association Awards,[14] and being selected for The Hollywood Reporter Critics' "15 International Breakout Talents of 2018" feature.[15]

Pierce Conran of Screen Anarchy wrote, "Plucked from auditions, first-timer Jeon Jong-seo achieves something almost unthinkable for a rookie, as she embodies a character who is caught between her dreams and reality, her yearning for freedom and role in society, and the powerful desires of those around her and her own. She is magnetic every time she appears on screen, at once playful and aching with a longing for something that she may never understand."[16] John Powers of Vogue wrote, "[i]n a marvelous screen debut, she gives a radiant turn, blooming so brightly—especially in a stoned twilight dance to Miles Davis—that she often outshines her male costars. Whenever she's not on-screen, the film instantly grows darker, unhappier."[17] Justin Chang of Los Angeles Times wrote, "Jeon, making a remarkable screen debut, brings this young woman to beautiful, soulful and defiant life."[18]

In 2020, Jeon will star in her second film, The Call.[19] She plays Young-seok, who believes that the telephone connected to the future is the only hope to save herself from making dangerous choices.[20][21] The film will premiere on Netflix on November 27, 2020.[22]

Jeon next will make her English-language film debut alongside Kate Hudson and Craig Robinson in Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon, a fantasy-adventure film by Iranian-American writer-director Ana Lily Amirpour, as the lead character Lunatic.[23][24]


Jeon Jong-seo at 2018 Cannes Film Festival
Year Title Role Director(s) Notes Ref.
2018 Burning Shin Hae-mi Lee Chang-dong Debut role [25]
2020 The Call Young-seok Lee Chung-hyun Post-production [19]
TBA Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon Lunatic Ana Lily Amirpour Post-production [26]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Nominated work Result Ref.
2018 27th Buil Film Awards Best New Actress Burning Nominated [27]
55th Grand Bell Awards Nominated [28]
2nd The Seoul Awards Nominated [29]
39th Blue Dragon Film Awards Nominated [30]
The Hollywood Reporter Critics 15 International Breakout Talents of 2018 6th place [15]
2019 16th International Cinephile Society Best Supporting Actress Nominated [31]
International Online Cinema Awards Nominated [32]
Chlotrudis Awards Nominated [33]
13th Asian Film Awards Best Newcomer Nominated [34]
55th Baeksang Arts Awards Best New Actress Nominated [35]
24th Chunsa Film Art Awards Best New Actress Nominated [36]
Asian Film Critics Association Awards Best New Performer Won
Faroe Islands Film Festival Nominated


  1. ^ "[여기는 칸] '버닝' 전종서, 어디 있다가 나타났냐고? (인터뷰①)". Mydaily (in Korean). 19 May 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Jeon Jong-seo Talks About Her Step into Spotlight with Debut Film". The Chosun Ilbo. 14 July 2018.
  3. ^ "[공식] 신예 전종서, 이창동 신작 '버닝' 파격 캐스팅…유아인과 호흡". The Sports Chosun (in Korean). 6 September 2017. Retrieved 8 September 2017.
  4. ^ a b "BURNING". Festival de Cannes. Retrieved 2019-01-10.
  5. ^ a b Bahr, Lindsey (2018-12-18). "'Roma,' 'Burning' among foreign language Oscar contenders". AP NEWS. Retrieved 2019-01-10.
  6. ^ a b Pond, Steve (2018-12-11). "Will 'The Walking Dead' Alum Steven Yeun Help Land South Korea's First Oscar Nod for 'Burning'?". The Wrap. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  7. ^ "신예 전종서, 칸의 '버닝'이 천국이었던 이유(인터뷰①)". Joynews24. 2018-05-19.
  8. ^ "[인터뷰] '버닝' 전종서 "플라스틱 용기처럼 찍어내는 연기 안 할래요"". Asia Today (in Korean). 14 June 2018.
  9. ^ "Newcomer JEON Jong-seo Joins YOO Ah-in on LEE Chang-dong Project". KOFIC. 14 September 2017. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  10. ^ "Jun Jong-seo struck gold earlier than she expected : The young actor found herself at Cannes Film Festival after first film role". Korea JoongAng Daily. 1 June 2018.
  11. ^ Brzeski, Patrick (12 October 2018). "Oscars: South Korea's Lee Chang-dong on the Many Mysteries of 'Burning'". The Hollywood Reporter.
  12. ^ a b Cronk, Jordan (2018). "Burning (Lee Chang-dong, South Korea) — Special Presentations". Cinema Scope.
  13. ^ "'Burning' director and cast hit Cannes red carpet". Yonhap News. 21 May 2018.
  14. ^ "Burning,' 'Cold War' top AP's best films of 2018" (Press release). 18 December 2018.
  15. ^ a b "15 International Breakout Talents of 2018" (Press release). Hollywood Reporter Critics. 27 December 2018.
  16. ^ Conran, Pierce (25 October 2018). "Review: BURNING, a Thriller Like No Other". Screen Anarchy.
  17. ^ Powers, John (26 October 2018). "'Burning' Is the New Thriller About Toxic Masculinity That You Didn't Know You Needed". Vogue.
  18. ^ Chang, Justin (29 October 2018). "Review: Lee Chang-dong's 'Burning' is a mesmerizing drama of rage, confusion and thwarted desire". Los Angeles Times.
  19. ^ a b "Park Shin-hye, Jeon Jong-seo Team up for New Thriller". The Chosun Ilbo. 19 January 2019.
  20. ^ "영화계 블루칩 증명한 전종서, 두번째 꿰찬 주연은?" (in Korean). Daily Today. March 5, 2019. Retrieved March 6, 2019.
  21. ^ "박신혜X전종서 '콜', 오감 전율케 한 강렬한 1차 예고편" (in Korean). YTN. February 4, 2020.
  22. ^ Park, Sae-jin (October 20, 2020). "Thriller film starring actress Park Shin-hye to premiere on Netflix". Aju Business Daily. Retrieved October 20, 2020.
  23. ^ Sneider, Jeff (April 8, 2019). "Exclusive: 'Burning' Star Jeon Jong-seo Eyed Join Kate Hudson in Ana Lily Amirpour's 'Blood Moon'". Collider. Retrieved April 18, 2019.
  24. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (July 1, 2019). "'Mona Lisa And The Blood Moon': 'Burning' Breakout Jun Jong-Seo Stars With Kate Hudson, Craig Robinson & Ed Skrein In Ana Lily Amirpour Pic Now Under Way". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 1, 2019.
  25. ^ "Newcomer JEON Jong-seo Joins YOO Ah-in on LEE Chang-dong Project". Korean Film Biz Zone. 14 September 2017.
  26. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (July 1, 2019). "'Mona Lisa And The Blood Moon': 'Burning' Breakout Jun Jong-Seo Stars With Kate Hudson, Craig Robinson & Ed Skrein In Ana Lily Amirpour Pic Now Under Way". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 1, 2019.
  27. ^ "[23회 부산국제영화제] 부일영화상". (in Korean). 20 September 2018.
  28. ^ "제55회 대종상, 각 부문 후보 공개…'공작' 12개 최다부문 노미네이트". Sports Seoul (in Korean). 21 September 2018.
  29. ^ "'제2회 더 서울어워즈' 10월27일 개최, 드라마-영화 각 부문별 후보공개". iMBC (in Korean). 28 September 2018.
  30. ^ "청룡영화상 후보 발표, '1987' 최다·'공작'도 9개부문 후보". Newsen (in Korean). 1 November 2018.
  31. ^ "Zama Brings Home Hidden Treasure at 16th ICS Awards" (Press release). International Cinephile Society. February 3, 2019.
  32. ^ "'The Favourite' tops 17th International Online Cinema Awards (INOCA)" (Press release). 23 February 2019. Archived from the original on 25 February 2019. Retrieved 26 February 2019.
  33. ^ Navío, Javier (March 19, 2019). "Lista completa de ganadores de los Chlotrudis Awards". Premios Oscar (in Spanish).
  34. ^ Chow, Vivienne (March 17, 2019). "'Shoplifters' Wins Best Picture at Asian Film Awards". Variety. Retrieved March 17, 2019.
  35. ^ "김혜자 '2019 백상예술대상' 품격 높였다 "오늘을, 살아가세요" (종합)". The Korea Herald (in Korean). May 1, 2019. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  36. ^ "진기주X전여빈 '24th 춘사영화제' 신인 여우상 수상 '영예'". Starnews (in Korean). July 18, 2019. Retrieved July 18, 2019.

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