Lee Hyun-woo (actor, born 1993)

Lee Hyun-woo (born March 23, 1993) is a South Korean actor and singer. He began his career as a child actor when he was nine, and later appeared in the television series The Return of Iljimae (2009) and Queen Seondeok (2009). He also featured in Master of Study (2010) and To the Beautiful You (2012). Lee gained recognition with his role as a North Korean spy in the 2013 film Secretly, Greatly as well as a genius hacker in 2014's The Con Artists,And Money Heist: Korea – Joint Economic Area(2022). He then played lead roles in Moorim School: Saga of the Brave (2016) and The Liar and His Lover (2017).

Lee Hyun-woo
Lee in January 2014
Born (1993-03-23) March 23, 1993 (age 31)
Seoul, South Korea
EducationDongguk University – theater and film
Occupations
  • Actor
  • singer
Years active2005–present
AgentAwesome ENT
Korean name
Hangul
이현우
Hanja
李玹雨
Revised RomanizationI Hyeon-u
McCune–ReischauerI Hyŏnu

Career

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2005–2011: Beginnings as a child actor

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Lee began his career as a child actor, building up his resume by playing roles in a number of large-scale productions, such as The Legend, The Great King, Sejong, The Return of Iljimae, and Queen Seondeok.[1][2]

He rose to fame for his role in Master of Study, a Korean screen adaptation of Japanese manga Dragon Zakura.[3][4] The same year, Lee took to the stage for the 2010 musical production of Footloose, where he played the leading role of Ren.[5]

In 2011, he and K-pop singer Yoon Doo-joon (from Beast) began hosting the music program Music on Top for cable channel JTBC.[6] He was then featured in IU's music video for the song "You and I".[7] Lee further expanded his acting scope in historical drama Gyebaek,[8] revenge thriller Man from the Equator,[9][10] and made a guest appearance in medical drama Brain.[11]

2012–2018: Rising popularity

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In November 2013

In 2012, Lee co-starred in To the Beautiful You, the Korean television adaptation of Japanese manga Hana-Kimi, with his role based on the character Shuichi Nakatsu.[12][13] Despite low ratings during its domestic run, To the Beautiful You led to increased Korean Wave exposure for Lee in countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan and China.[14][15][16] He and co-star Hwang Kwang-hee were later announced as the new hosts of live music show Inkigayo.[17]

His breakthrough continued when he landed a major role in 2013 box office hit Secretly, Greatly, an action-comedy film in which he played a North Korean undercover spy disguised as a high school boy.[18] Lee also sang "Ode to Youth" for the film's soundtrack.[19][20] He became the first male celebrity to be appointed ambassador of the Puchon International Film Festival.[21]

In 2014, he and real-life best friend Park Ji-bin (both were child actors and belong to the same agency) appeared in the travel/reality show Real Mate in Saipan.[22] Lee next played a hacker in the heist movie The Con Artists.[23][24]

He then starred in Northern Limit Line, a 2015 naval thriller about the Second Battle of Yeonpyeong.[25] The film sold 6,024,894 tickets (grossing US$38,945,231), making it the most-watched Korean film in 2015.[26]

In 2016, he starred in the fantasy youth drama Moorim School: Saga of the Brave.[27] Initially slated for 20 episodes, the drama was reduced to 16 episodes instead due to low ratings.[28]

In 2017, Lee starred in the drama The Liar and His Lover, the Korean remake of the Japanese manga Kanojo wa Uso o Aishisugiteru alongside Red Velvet's Joy.[29]

In 2018, Lee released a digital single titled "Twenty-Six", prior to joining the army.[30]

2022–present : Returning to the small screen

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In 2022, Lee returned to the small screen with the Netflix drama Money Heist: Korea – Joint Economic Area, his first work on the small screen in five years.[31]

Personal life

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Military service

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On February 19, 2018, Lee began his mandatory military service as an active duty soldier.[32][33] He completed his military service and was discharged on October 19, 2019.[34]

Filmography

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Film

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In April 2014
Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2005 Baribari Jjang
2006 Holiday
A Dirty Carnival young Min-ho
2007 Hwang Jin Yi young Nomi
2010 The Loneliness of Butcher Boy Tae-shik Short film [35]
2011 GLove Kim Jin-man [36]
2013 Secretly, Greatly Rhee Hae-jin
2014 The Con Artists Jong-bae
2015 Northern Limit Line Park Dong-hyuk
The Beauty Inside Woo-jin
2022 Hero Yoo Dong-ha [37]
2023 Dream Kim In-sun [38]
2024 Dog Days Hyeon [39][40]

Television series

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In January 2015
Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2004 Oolla Boolla Blue-jjang
2005 Spring Day
2006 Hwarang Fighter Maru Seo Da-ham [41]
2007 The Legend Young Cheoro
Lobbyist Young Harry [42]
2008 The Great King, Sejong Prince Choong-nyeong [43][44]
Four Colours of Love Lee Jung-wook Episode 4: On a Night Sparkling with Stars [45]
2009 The Return of Iljimae Cha Dol-yi [46]
Queen Seondeok Young Kim Yushin [47]
What's for Dinner? Tommy [48]
2010 Master of Study Hong Chan-doo
2011 Gyebaek Young Gyebaek
Brain Park Dong-hwa Guest appearance in episodes 1–4
2012 Man from the Equator Young Kim Sun-woo
To the Beautiful You Cha Eun-gyul
2015 Run Toward Tomorrow Kang Moon-jae KBS Drama Special [49]
The Scholar Who Walks the Night Prince Jeonghyeon Cameo (Episode 1) [50]
2016 Moorim School: Saga of the Brave Yoon Shi-woo
2017 The Liar and His Lover Kang Han-gyul
2023-2024 A Good Day to Be a Dog Lee Bo-gyeom [51]

Web series

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Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2022 Money Heist: Korea – Joint Economic Area Rio / Han Joseph Part 1–2 [52][53]

Music video appearances

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Year Title Artist Ref.
2005 "Jump" Haha
2011 "You and I" IU
2012 "First Love's Melody" Acoustic Collabo
2013 "I Love You" Akdong Musician [54]
2016 "Ordinary Love" KCM [55]
2019 "Above the Time" IU

Hosting

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In August 2013
Year Title Ref.
December 8, 2011 – March 14, 2012 Music on Top
December 16, 2012 – January 26, 2014 Inkigayo

Reality shows

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Year Title Notes Ref.
2012 Invincible Youth Season 2 Ep. 26
Strong Heart Ep. 142, 143
2013 Running Man Ep. 147, 225
Hwasin: Controller of the Heart Ep. 22
2014 Real Mate in Saipan with Park Ji-bin
Running Man Ep. 225
2015 Happy Together 3 Ep. 401
2016 Hello Counselor Ep. 257

Theatre

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Year Title Role
2010 Footloose Ren McCormack

Discography

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Singles

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Title Year Peak chart position Sales Album
KOR
Gaon

[56]
Collaborations
"Your Face" (with Louie of Geeks)[57] 2016 54 Non-album singles
"Feel So Good" (with O Broject)
"Twenty-six" 2018
As featured artist
"It's a Lie" (O Broject feat. Lee Hyun-woo & Vromance) 2015 Non-album single
Soundtrack appearances
"Ode to Youth" 2013 Secretly, Greatly OST
"One Thing" 2016 Moorim School: Saga of the Brave OST
"I'm Okay" (Joy feat. Lee Hyun-woo) 2017 85 The Liar and His Lover OST
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.

Awards and nominations

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Name of the award ceremony, year presented, category, nominated work and the result of the nomination
Award Year Category Nominated work Result Ref.
KBS Drama Awards 2008 Best Young Actor The Great King, Sejong Won [60]
2012 Best New Actor Man from the Equator Nominated
SBS Drama Awards New Star Award To the Beautiful You Won [61]
22nd Buil Film Awards 2013 Best New Actor Secretly, Greatly Nominated
34th Blue Dragon Film Awards Nominated
SBS Entertainment Awards Best Newcomer Award Inkigayo Nominated
9th Asia Model Awards 2014 New Star Award Secretly, Greatly Won [62]
16th Seoul International Youth Film Festival Best Young Actor Nominated
52nd Grand Bell Awards 2015 Best New Actor Northern Limit Line Nominated
30th Korea Best Dresser Swan Awards Rising Star Award Won [63]
49th WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival 2016 Best Supporting Actor Award Won [64]

References

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  2. ^ "Lee Hyun-woo, life right now". 10Asia. August 13, 2015. Archived from the original on March 1, 2016. Retrieved February 15, 2016 – via Hancinema.
  3. ^ Wee, Geun-woo (February 22, 2010). "Interview: Actor Lee Hyun-woo – Part 1". 10Asia. Archived from the original on November 3, 2013. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  4. ^ Wee, Geun-woo (February 22, 2010). "Interview: Actor Lee Hyun-woo – Part 2". 10Asia. Archived from the original on November 3, 2013. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
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  6. ^ Hong, Lucia (December 6, 2011). "BEAST Yoon Du-jun, Lee Hyun-woo to host new music program". 10Asia. Archived from the original on November 3, 2013. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
  7. ^ Park Hyun-min, Elizabeth Eun (December 1, 2011). "IU-Lee Hyun Woo's Hugging Scene Cut From MV". enewsWorld. Archived from the original on January 29, 2013. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
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  56. ^ Charted songs:
  57. ^ "Lee Hyun-woo to release single with Louie". Korea JoongAng Daily. December 31, 2015. Archived from the original on August 4, 2017. Retrieved August 3, 2017.
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  64. ^ "Best Supporting Actor Award for LEE Hyun-woo in Houston". Korean Film Council. May 9, 2016. Archived from the original on December 13, 2021. Retrieved May 23, 2017.
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