Lee Deok-hwa

Lee Deok-hwa (born May 8, 1952) is a South Korean actor.

Lee Deok-hwa
Lee Deok-hwa in 2019
Born (1952-05-08) May 8, 1952 (age 71)
Seoul, South Korea
Alma materDongguk University
Years active1972-present
SpouseKim Bo-ok [ko]
Korean name
Revised RomanizationI Deok-hwa
McCune–ReischauerI Dŏkhwa


Lee Deok-hwa studied theater and film at Dongguk University, and made his acting debut in 1972.[1] He and his father, movie star Lee Ye-chun starred together in the 1975 horror film The Man with Two Faces.[2]

In 1976, Lee and actress Im Ye-jin starred in Never Forget Me and I Am Really Sorry, both movies in the "Really Really" series that dealt with teenagers' aspirations and romance.[3] They were box office hits, and hugely popular among high school students of that generation.[4][5] Lee had previously acted opposite Im in Red Shoes (1975) and continued to do so in Blue Classroom (1976), I've Never Felt Like This Before (1976), Angry Apple (1977), When We Grow Up... (1977), The First Snow (1977), The Hey Days of Youth 77 (1979), and Love's Scribble (1988).

Lee received acting recognition for his subsequent films, including three Best Actor awards from the Grand Bell Awards for Lost Love (also known as In the Name of Memory, 1989), Fly High Run Far (1991), and I Will Survive (1993). Lee also became the first Korean actor to win an award at an international film festival in 1993 when he was chosen as Best Actor at the Moscow International Film Festival for I Will Survive.[6][7][8]

On the small screen, Lee won the prestigious Daesang (or "Grand Prize") for the contemporary drama Love and Ambition (1987) and period epic Han Myung-hoe (1994). The latter is among the many real-life historical figures that Lee has played in his prolific career, including Joseon prime minister Han Myung-hoe in Han Myung-hoe (1994), Goryeo military dictator Yi Ui-min in Age of Warriors (2003), Tang Dynasty general Xue Rengui in Dae Jo Yeong (2006), Goryeo military commander Gang Gam-chan in Empress Cheonchu (2009), and King Dongmyeong of Goguryeo in The King of Legend (2010).

In 2005, Lee played Chun Doo-hwan in the television drama 5th Republic, in an ongoing series on MBC about modern Korean political history. The Fifth Republic stands for the period that Chun was in power as president, depicting how he assumed power through a military coup and was forced to resign after a series of democratic movements.[9] The drama was controversial and provoked mixed reactions. Some viewers complained that Lee's charismatic turn as Chun was an attempt to beautify or whitewash the image of the dictator, whereas former aides of Chun accused MBC of distorting history.[10][11][12]

Later that year, Lee was reported to be the second top earner among all actors and entertainers who appeared on the KBS network in 2004, with total earnings of ₩339 million.[13]

He reunited with Dae Jo Yeong writer Jang Young-chul in 2010 hit drama Giant, set during the economic boom of 1970-80s Korea.[14] He again joined Jang's follow-up along with former co-star Lee Beom-soo in the 2012 drama History of a Salaryman. The series is set upon a quirky comedy and satire of China's Chu–Han Contention against the backdrop of the pharmaceutical industry, industrial espionage, and office politics.[15]

In 2013, Lee received glowing reviews for his turn as King Injo in the period drama Blooded Palace: The War of Flowers, shown on cable channel jTBC. At a press conference prior to airing, Lee said, "Injo is a king who acceded to the throne due to revolutionary force. He had no philosophy of his own and was just a puppet king. It is more interesting for me to portray a king that we are unfamiliar with."[16]

Lee also hosts variety shows, notably the Korean version of Dancing with the Stars for the past three seasons.

Other activitiesEdit

Lee was president of the Korea Film Actors Association in 1995, and its chairman from 2009 to 2010.[17] He also served as festival director for the Chungmuro International Film Festival in Seoul (CHFFIS) from 2008 to 2009.[18][19][20][21][22]

Lee ran for Congress in 1996 under the conservative New Korea Party, predecessor of the Grand National Party, but was defeated.[23]

He actively campaigned for Lee Myung-bak during the 2007 primaries and presidential election, making speeches at sorties and taking an advisory post for the team's art and culture policy.[23][24]

In 2009, Lee, Cho Jae-hyun, Choi Soo-jong, Sol Kyung-gu, Kim Hye-soo, Ahn Sung-ki and Park Joong-hoon each taught a master class in acting at the Im Kwon-taek Film and Art College of Dongseo University. All of them then waived their lecturing fees and donated the entire amount to scholarships for young actors. Lee said he willingly accepted the request to teach because he wanted to contribute to training talented film experts for the future of the Korean film industry, and that he was happy to donate his fee to that cause.[25]

Personal lifeEdit

Lee's father is actor Lee Ye-chun [ko] (1919–1977). His daughter Lee Ji-hyun [Ko] is also an actress.[citation needed]



Year Title Role Notes
1975 Red Shoes
1976 The Man with Two Faces
Never Forget Me Young Soo
Let's Talk About Youth
Seven Tomboys
Seong Chun-hyang Lee Mong-ryung
Blue Classroom
I Am Really Sorry Tae Il
I've Never Felt Like This Before
Green Fallen Leaves Kang Min
1977 Angry Apple Cheong
You Are the Moon, I Am the Sun Seung Il
When We Grow Up... Young Soo
The First Snow Ki Chul
1979 The Hey Days of Youth 77 Kwak Du-shik
We Took the Night Train Hyuk
Tomorrow After Tomorrow Gyu Hwa
The Rain at Night Hwang Sa Bin
1981 Two Sons [26]
1983 Wild Scoundrels of College
1984 The Companion
1987 A Street Musician Jung Tae
1988 You My Rose Mellow Jong Hwan
Love's Scribble Dal Ho
1989 Lost Love
Happiness Does Not Come In Grades Ba Gil-hwa
Country of Fire Baek Chan-gyu
1990 I Stand Everyday Jang Baek-soo
The Woman Who Walks on Water Jae Min
1991 Fly High Run Far Hae Wol
1993 I Will Survive Man Seok
1994 I Wish for What Is Forbidden to Me
Life and Death of the Hollywood Kid
1995 The Rose of Sharon Blooms Again President Hoo Support Role
1996 Cue Min Wook
2002 Lesson Wook Ki Support Role
2006 Radio Star
2011 Sunny cameo
2013 Eating Talking Faucking [Philosopher] Support Role

Television seriesEdit

Year Title Role Notes
1980 Ahrong-yi Darong-yi
1981 Embrace
1982 Regret
Can't Forget
Women's History - Seogung Mama Prince Gwang Hae
1983 Portrait of You
Father and Son In Geun Support Role
1984 Love and Truth
1985 The Season of Men
1987 Love and Ambition Park Tae-soo Support Role
1988 500 Years of Joseon - Queen Inhyeon Jang Hee-jae
1989 Happy Woman Park Jae-sub
Migratory Bird
1990 The End of Love
1991 Do You Know Eun Ha-su Yoon Ji-woon
Angel Na Woon-gyu
1992 Ambitions on Sand No Gil-joon
1993 Theme Series
1994 Han Myung-hoe Han Myung-hoe
1997 Woman Next Door Lee Ho-nam
1998 Hong Gil-dong Im Sung-joong Support Role
I Love You! I Love You! Park Jong-hwan
1999 Wave [Young No's Uncle]
Magic Castle Wang Dae-san
LA Arirang
2000 SWAT Police Park Tae-hyung
Promise Huh Tae-heung
Cheers for the Women
2001 Ladies of the Palace Yoon Won-hyung
2002 Five Brothers and Sisters Support Role
2003 All In Kim In Dal
Age of Warriors Lee Ui Min
2004 Into the Storm Kim Sung Chul Support Role
My Lovely Family Song Min Sub [Father]
First Love of a Royal Prince President Choi Eun Chul
2005 5th Republic Chun Doo Hwan [11th President of Korea]
Golden Apple Park Byung Sam [Jong Gyu's Father] Support Role
2006 Look Back With a Smile Lee Duk Hwa
Dae Jo Yeong Xue Ren Gui / "Tang" Support Role
2008 Formidable Rivals President Kang Min Kook
Aeja's Older Sister, Minja Han Beom Man [Ae Ja's husband]
Hometown Legends: Gisaeng House Ghost Story Kim Won Ik (Ep. 6)
2009 Empress Cheonchu General Kang Gam Chan Support Role
2010 Giant Hwang Tae Sop
Legend of the Patriots Park Woong
The King of Legend King Dong Myung Sung Support Role
2011 Midas Kim Tae Sung
Spy Myung-wol Company president Joo
2012 History of a Salaryman Jin Shi Hwang
21st Century Family Lee Duk Hwa
May Queen Jang Do Hyun Support Role
2013 Queen of Ambition Baek Chang Hak
Blooded Palace: The War of Flowers King In Jo
Secret Love Chairman Jo Han Il Support Role
Prime Minister & I Chairman Na Cameo
2014 Wonderful Day in October Lee Shin Jae
Hotel King Lee Joong Goo
2015 My Heart Twinkle Twinkle Lee Jin Sam Support Role
Shine or Go Crazy Wang Shik Ryum
Hyde Jekyll, Me Goo Myung Han Support Role
Unkind Ladies Cameo (ep. 21–22)
The Merchant: Gaekju 2015 Shin Seok Joo
2016 Monster Hwang Jae Man Support Role
Squad 38 Chairman Wang Cameo
2017 Innocent Defendant
Suspicious Partner Byun Young Hee Support Role
Hit the Top Lee Soon Tae
Judge vs. Judge Do Jin Myung
2018 Welcome to Waikiki Joon Ki's father Cameo (ep. 4)
Nice Witch Oh Pyung Pan[27] Support Role
2019 Love in Sadness Yoon Hyung Chul [Ma Ri's father]
2021 The Red Sleeve King Yeongjo[28]
2022 Business Proposal Chairman Kang Da-goo[29][30]
One Dollar Lawyer Baek Hyun-moo[31][32]
2023 Stealer: The Treasure Keeper Kim Young-soo[33]
7 Escape Bang Chil-sung[34]

Variety showsEdit

Year Title Notes
1981-1984 Show 2000
1983–1985 MBC Campus Song Festival Host
1985–1991 Saturday Saturday is Fun
1991–1992 Show Seoul Seoul
2010 Chuseok Special: Story Show 부탁해요 [35]
2011 Special Feature: 7080 Idol Stars, King of Pop Singers
2011–2013 Dancing with the Stars
2017–present City Fisherman Cast Member; Season 1–4[36]
2021 Hello Trot Host with Bae Seong-jae[37]
2023 City Sashimi Restaurant[38] General manager

Radio programsEdit

Year Title Network
1982–1984 Women Salon KBS Radio 4
1978–1979 Lee Deok-hwa and Im Ye-jin's Reckless Radio TBC Radio


  • 사람을 좋아하는 사람 이덕화 (1996)

Awards and nominationsEdit

Name of the award ceremony, year presented, category, nominee of the award, and the result of the nomination
Award ceremony Year Category Nominee / Work Result
Baeksang Arts Awards 1985 Popularity Award - TV Love and Truth Won
1987 Love and Ambition Won
1988 Best Actor – Film You My Rose Mellow Won
1992 Popularity Award - Film Fly High Run Far Won
2022 Best Supporting Actor – Television[39] The Red Sleeve Nominated
Chunsa Film Art Awards 1991 Best Actor Fly High Run Far Won
1992 Fly High Run Far Won
1993 I Will Survive Won
Grand Bell Awards 1989 Lost Love Won
MBC Drama Awards 1987 Grand Prize (Daesang) Love and Ambition Won
2005 Special Award 5th Republic Won
2012 Golden Acting Award - Actor May Queen Won
2021 Best Achievement Award[40] The Red Sleeve Won
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries Nominated
Moscow International Film Festival 1993 Best Actor I Will Survive Won
KBS Drama Awards 1994 Popularity Award Han Myung-hoe Won
Grand Prize (Daesang) Won
Top Excellence Award - Actor Won
2007 Dae Jo Yeong Won
SBS Drama Awards 2010 Best Supporting Actor in a Special Planning Drama Giant Won
2012 Special Award, Actor in a Miniseries History of a Salaryman Won
2014 Special Award, Actor in a Drama Short Wonderful Day in October Won


  1. ^ Han, Sang-hee (13 September 2009). "Seoul Int'l Drama Awards End With Promise". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  2. ^ Han, Sang-hee (28 September 2009). "Stars' Families Stealing Spotlight". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  3. ^ Noh, Jae-hyun (12 January 2013). "Adult diapers are closer than you think". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  4. ^ "2008.6.5 Event Calendar". Korea JoongAng Daily. 5 June 2008. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  5. ^ Choi, Min-woo (20 December 2008). "High notes and discord in the musical world". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  6. ^ "18th Moscow International Film Festival (1993)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 2014-04-03. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  7. ^ "Korean Film Newsletter #18: Awards at international film festivals". Koreanfilm.org. 31 October 2003. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
  8. ^ Ahn, Hyo-lim (28 May 2007). "Korean actresses cleaning up at filmfests". the Korea Herald via Hancinema. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  9. ^ "TV Drama Takes on Korea's Fifth Republic". The Chosun Ilbo. 12 April 2005. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  10. ^ Kim, Tae-jong (15 April 2005). "Drama Deals With Politically Sensitive Era". The Korea Times via Hancinema. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
  11. ^ Park, Chung-a (24 May 2005). "Political Drama Sparks Controversy". The Korea Times via Hancinema. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
  12. ^ Hong, Joo-hee; Lee, Jeong-min (4 March 2010). "Political TV: a story of censorship and taboo". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
  13. ^ "Actress Ko Top Money Earner at KBS". The Korea Times via Hancinema. 3 October 2005. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  14. ^ Lee, Ga-on (7 May 2010). "PREVIEW: SBS TV series Giant". 10Asia. Archived from the original on 6 November 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
  15. ^ Noh, Hyun-gi (25 December 2011). "History of Salaryman, comic tribute to breadwinners". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  16. ^ Yang, Sung-hee (22 March 2013). "In drama, concubines compete for royal love". Korea JoongAng Daily. Archived from the original on 11 April 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-06.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  17. ^ Min, Ines (5 October 2010). "Actor Shin Young-kyun donates 50 billion won". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  18. ^ "Chungmuro Film Festival Invites Top Stars". KBS World. 1 September 2008. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  19. ^ Kim, Kyu-heong (29 July 2008). "Chungmuro aims to link past and present". The Korea Herald via Hancinema. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  20. ^ "Lee Deok-hwa to Head Chungmuro Film Fest". The Chosun Ilbo. 15 June 2009. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  21. ^ Park, Sun-young (17 July 2009). "Festival brings film back to Chungmuro". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  22. ^ Lee, Eun-joo (20 August 2008). "Timeless tales of love and loss in classic Korean cinema". Korea Joongang Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  23. ^ a b Kim, Rahn (21 August 2007). "Entertainers Supporting Lee". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  24. ^ Lee, Eun-joo (24 April 2008). "Serious politicians or image-builders?". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  25. ^ "Actors Donate Lecture Fees to Scholarships for Young Actors". KBS Global. 29 May 2009. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  26. ^ Park, Soo-mee (1 February 2002). "A 3-hankie, sentimental journey". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  27. ^ Park (박), Ah-reum (아름) (December 12, 2017). "이덕화 '착한마녀전' 출연 확정 "항공사 CEO역"(공식)". Newsen (in Korean). Retrieved January 30, 2018.
  28. ^ Moon Ji-yeon (May 14, 2021). "[공식] 이덕화, 3년 만에 드라마 복귀..'옷소매 붉은 끝동' 합류" [[Official] Lee Deok-hwa returns to drama after 3 years... Joining 'Red Sleeves]. Sports Chosun (in Korean). Naver. Retrieved May 15, 2021.
  29. ^ Kang Hyo-jin (November 10, 2021). "[단독]이덕화, '사내맞선' 합류…안효섭 할아버지 된다" [[Exclusive] Deok-Hwa Lee joins 'Male Guy'... Ahn Hyo-seop becomes a grandfather] (in Korean). Retrieved November 16, 2021 – via SPOTV News.
  30. ^ Yoo Byung-cheol (February 7, 2022). "이덕화, 드라마 '사내맞선' 출격…'근엄+귀여움' 반전 매력 예고" [Lee Deok-hwa, drama 'Meet the Guy' is scrambled... Anticipation of reversal charm of 'severity + cuteness] (in Korean). Korea Economy TV. Retrieved February 7, 2022 – via Naver.
  31. ^ Kim Ji-hye (April 7, 2022). "[단독]'사내맞선' 이덕화, 남궁민 만난다..'천원짜리 변호사' 출연" [[Exclusive] Deok-Hwa Lee, Meet Nam Goong-Min in 'Meet the Man' Appearing in 'A Thousand Dollar Lawyer] (in Korean). Herald POP. Retrieved April 7, 2022 – via Naver.
  32. ^ Kang Seon-ae (May 12, 2022). "남궁민, '스토브리그' 신드롬 한 번 더…SBS '천원짜리 변호사' 출연 확정" [Namgoong-min, 'Stove League' syndrome once more... Confirmed to appear in SBS' 'One Thousand Dollar Lawyer] (in Korean). SBS. Retrieved May 12, 2022 – via Naver.
  33. ^ Hwang Soo-yeon (March 2, 2023). "스틸러' 주원→이덕화 온다…파이팅 넘치는 대본리딩 현장" ['Stealer : Seven Joseon Coins' Joo Won→Lee Deok-hwa is coming... Script reading full of fighting spirit] (in Korean). X-ports News. Retrieved March 2, 2023 – via Naver.
  34. ^ Tae Yu-na (September 22, 2022). "[공식] 김순옥 신작 '7인의 탈출', 주인공은 엄기준·황정음…7인 완벽 라인업" [[Official] Kim Soon-ok's new work 'The Escape of the Seven', the main characters are Um Ki-joon and Hwang Jung-eum... 7 person complete lineup] (in Korean). Ten Asia. Retrieved September 22, 2022 – via Naver.
  35. ^ Lee, Hyo-won; Han, Sang-hee (14 September 2010). "Chuseok: prime time for couch potatoes". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  36. ^ Yeo Hwi-seon (May 17, 2022). "이경규X이덕화, '도시어부' 또 간다...시즌4 출연 확정 [공식]" [Lee Kyung-gyu X Lee Deok-hwa, 'Urban Fisherman' goes again... Season 4 appearance confirmed [Official]] (in Korean). OSEN. Retrieved May 17, 2022 – via Naver.
  37. ^ Lee Min-ji (September 27, 2021). "헬로트로트' 이덕화 MC 출격, 배성재와 호흡 "11월 편성 확정"(공식)" ['Hello Trot' MC Lee Deok-hwa scrambles and works with Bae Seong-jae "November schedule confirmed" (official)]. Newsen (in Korean). Retrieved September 27, 2021 – via Naver.
  38. ^ Ahn, Tae-hyun (March 13, 2023). "'도시어부'들이 여는 '도시횟집', 23일 첫방 확정…메인포스터 공개" ['Urban raw fish restaurant' opened by 'city fishermen', confirmed for the first time on the 23rd... The main poster released] (in Korean). News1. Retrieved March 13, 2023 – via Naver.
  39. ^ Ahn Byung-gil (April 11, 2022). "58회 백상예술대상 후보 공개…영광의 주인공은?" [58th Baeksang Arts Awards nominations revealed... Who is the hero of glory?] (in Korean). Sports Kyunghyang. Retrieved April 11, 2022 – via Naver.
  40. ^ Jeon Hyun-joo (December 30, 2021). "데뷔 51년차' 이덕화, 공로상…"옷소매 덕에 살맛 나, 짜릿하다" ['51 Years of Debut' Lee Deok-hwa, Achievement Award... "I feel alive thanks to the sleeves, it's thrilling] (in Korean). Money Today. Retrieved December 30, 2021 – via Naver.

External linksEdit