Kim Woo-bin (born Kim Hyun-joong on July 16, 1989) is a South Korean actor and model. He began his career as a runway model and made his acting debut in the television drama White Christmas. He subsequently gained attention in A Gentleman's Dignity (2012), and made his breakthrough with School 2013 (2012-2013) and The Heirs (2013). Kim later starred in box office hits Friend: The Great Legacy (2013), The Con Artists (2014) and Twenty (2015). In 2016, he took on his first leading role on television in Uncontrollably Fond.
July 16, 1989
Seoul, South Korea
|Alma mater||Jeonju University|
|Height||188 cm (6 ft 2 in)|
|Revised Romanization||Gim U-bin|
|Revised Romanization||Gim Hyeon-jung|
In May 2017, Kim's agency announced that Kim would be taking a hiatus after he was diagnosed with nasopharyngeal cancer. Kim subsequently returned to screen in 2022 with the TV series Our Blues and Black Knight and also with the sci-fi action film Alienoid, directed by Choi Dong-hoon.
Kim wanted to pursue a modeling career since he was a high school student. He debuted as a runway model in 2009 at the age of 20 and began appearing in prêt-à-porter and Seoul Fashion Week collections.
As his modeling career progressed, he started doing commercial films and began studying acting, under the guidance of acting coach Moon Won-joo. Kim fell in love with acting, saying, "I found myself feeling the same thrill and enthusiasm that I felt the first time I came to walk on the runway".
Under the stage name Kim Woo-bin, he made his acting debut in 2011, starring in the mystery drama White Christmas and the low-rated cable sitcom Vampire Idol.
In 2012, he had a supporting role in the romantic comedy drama A Gentleman's Dignity, written by famed screenwriter Kim Eun-sook. Next came a two-episode guest appearance in drama adaptation of the popular manga To the Beautiful You.
2013: Rising popularityEdit
Kim's breakout year came in 2013 with two hit dramas and one film. From late December to early 2013, he starred in the teen drama School 2013. He received his first acting award for the role at the 2nd APAN Star Awards under the category Best New Actor.
The same year, he was cast in Kim Eun-sook's teen drama The Heirs, which became popular domestically and internationally with a peak audience rating of 28.6% and 1 million hits on the Chinese streaming website iQiyi. Kim experienced a surge in popularity overseas. This led to increased advertising contracts and acting offers for the actor.
Kim then appeared in his first major film role in Friend: The Great Legacy, the blockbuster sequel to Kwak Kyung-taek's 2001 box office hit. He received positive reviews for his portrayal as a young gang member. The same year he became the host of cable music program M! Countdown from August 15, 2013, to February 13, 2014.
2014–2017: Success in film and hiatusEdit
After his rise in popularity in 2013, Kim continued appearing in big screen projects. In January 2014, he was cast in the heist movie The Con Artists, in which he played a top safe-cracker alongside rising star Lee Hyun-woo. He then took on a comedic character in indie director Lee Byung-heon's sophomore effort Twenty in 2015.
Kim then appeared in an ad campaign for Calvin Klein Watches + Jewelry, making him the first East Asian model for the brand.
In 2015, Kim was cast in his first television leading role in the melodrama Uncontrollably Fond, written by screenwriter Lee Kyung-hee. The drama premiered on July 6, 2016.
He then starred in crime action film Master alongside Lee Byung-hun and Kang Dong-won. The movie premiered in December 2016 and became the 11th bestselling film for 2016 in South Korea.
In 2017, Kim was cast in crime caper film Wiretap by Choi Dong-hoon. The project has since been suspended to allow Kim to seek treatment for cancer.
2020–present: Return to screenEdit
On March 11, 2020, AM Entertainment announced that Kim would be returning to the big screen in Choi Dong-hoon's upcoming sci-fi film Alienoid alongside Ryu Jun-yeol and Kim Tae-ri. The film premiered in July 2022 and Kim played the role of 'Guard', a person in charge of managing alien prisoners.
Also in 2022, Kim co-starred in acclaimed screenwriter Noh Hee-kyung's television series Our Blues, and will star in Netflix original series Black Knight.
Kim is best friends with fellow model-actor and School 2013 co-star Lee Jong-suk, whom he has known since their modeling days.
Since May 2015, Kim has been in a relationship with model-actress Shin Min-a.
On May 24, 2017, Kim was diagnosed with nasopharyngeal cancer. Kim's agency, Sidus HQ, said Kim had begun drug and radiation treatment and would halt all activities. On December 29, Kim announced, in a letter, that he had completed his treatment plan for the cancer. However, he was still exempted from military service.
On March 8, 2022, Kim donated ₩100 million to the Hope Bridge Disaster Relief Association to help the victims of the massive wildfires that started in Uljin, Gyeongbuk. and also spread to Samcheok, Gangwon. On Christmas Day, Kim sent gifts and sent a handwritten letter for about 200 children who are hospitalized in the children's ward of Asan Hospital in Seoul.
In January 2023, Kim donated 100 million won to Asan Medical Center in Seoul, the donation will be used to support the treatment of poor patients.
In 2013, Kim was named honorary ambassador for his alma mater, Jeonju University. The same year, he was appointed the public relations ambassador of the 2013 Suwon Information Science Festival; and ambassador of the "Good Downloader Campaign" organized by the Korean Film Council and Film Federation Against Piracy.
In 2015, Kim was chosen as the promotional ambassador of CJ CGV's arthouse exhibition chain CGV ARTHOUSE.
In April 2017, Kim was appointed as an honorary ambassador for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Kim is the second actor to take on this role and was set to take part in various activities to promote the event. In October, however, he was pulled from the role due to his ongoing cancer treatments.
|2012||Runway Cop||Cameo, last part|||
|2013||Friend: The Great Legacy||Han Sung-hoon|||
|2014||The Con Artists||Ji-hyuk|||
|2021||Like Father, Like Son||Narrator||Barrier-free version|||
|2011||White Christmas||Kang Mi-reu|||
|Cupid Factory||Roy||Drama Special|||
|2012||A Gentleman's Dignity||Kim Dong-hyub|||
|To the Beautiful You||John Kim||guest, episodes 9-11|||
|School 2013||Park Heung-soo|||
|2013||The Heirs||Choi Young-do|||
|2016||Uncontrollably Fond||Shin Joon-young|||
|2022||Our Blues||Park Jeong-joon|||
|2014||Love Cells||Love cell hunter|||
|2023||Black Knight||5–8, a legendary courier|||
Hosting and documentaryEdit
|2013||Don't Mess With Me||2EYES|||
|Year||Title||Peak chart positions||Sales||Album|
|2016||"Picture In My Head"||
|—||Uncontrollably Fond OST|
|"Do You Know"||
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.|
Awards and nominationsEdit
|Award ceremony||Year||Category||Nominee / Work||Result||Ref.|
|APAN Star Awards||2013||Best New Actor||School 2013||Won|||
|2014||Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries||The Heirs||Nominated|||
|2022||Best Couple||Kim Woo-bin with Han Ji-min
|Asia Model Awards||2013||New Star Award||Kim Woo-bin||Won|||
|2014||Asia Star Award||Won|||
|Asia Rainbow TV Awards||2014||Best Supporting Actor||The Heirs||Nominated|
|Baeksang Arts Awards||2013||Best New Actor – Television||School 2013||Nominated|||
|2014||Best New Actor – Film||Friend: The Great Legacy||Nominated|
|Blue Dragon Film Awards||2014||Best New Actor||Nominated|||
|Popular Star Award||Won|||
|Buil Film Awards||2015||Best New Actor||Twenty||Nominated|
|China TV Drama Awards||2013||Popular Foreign Actor||The Heirs||Won|||
|Fashionista Awards||2015||Best Fashionista – Male Category||Kim Woo-bin||Nominated|
|2016||Best Dresser – Male||Nominated|
|Grand Bell Awards||2014||Hana Financial Group Star Award (Popularity Award)||Friend: The Great Legacy||Won|||
|InStyle Star Icon||2016||Best Actor (Film)||The Con Artists, Twenty||Nominated|
|Most Stylish Male Actor||Kim Woo-bin||Nominated|
|KBS Drama Awards||2016||Excellence Award, Actor in a Mid-length Drama||Uncontrollably Fond||Nominated|
|Netizen Award, Actor||Nominated|
|Best Couple Award||Kim Woo-bin with Bae Suzy
|Korean Advertisers Association Awards||2016||Best Model||Kim Woo-bin||Won|||
|Korea Best Dresser Swan Awards||2015||Best Dresser Award||Won|
|Korea Drama Awards||2013||Best New Actor||School 2013||Nominated|||
|2014||Excellence Award, Actor||The Heirs||Nominated|||
|Korean Film Actors' Guild Awards||2015||Popularity Award||Twenty||Won|||
|Max Movie Awards||2014||Best New Actor||Friend: The Great Legacy||Nominated|
|2015||Best Actor||The Con Artists||Nominated|
|Mnet 20's Choice Awards||2013||20's Booming Star – Male||School 2013||Nominated|||
|Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival||2014||Fantasia Award||Kim Woo-bin||Won|||
|SBS Drama Awards||2013||Top 10 Stars||The Heirs||Won|||
|Seoul International Drama Awards||2014||People's Choice Actor||Nominated|
|Style Icon Awards||Top 10 Style Icons||Kim Woo-bin||Nominated|
|Forbes||2015||Korea Power Celebrity||29th|||
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- Kim Woo-bin at HanCinema
- Kim Woo-bin at IMDb