Between the movies, television series, reality shows and music videos, Jang Hyuk’s acting portfolio is very robust and almost exclusively South Korean. He is definitely a name that is not hard to recall on the shores of his home country.
Since he started his career in 1997, the South Korean actor has appeared in well over 40 movies and television series combined. Some of his most successful projects include Volcano High (2001); Windstruck (2004); Slave Hunters (2010); Fated to Love You (2014); and Money Flower (2017).
Who is Jang Hyuk?
Born Jung Yong-Joon in Busan, South Korea on December 20, 1976, Jang grew up with an interest in the world of entertainment. He made his acting debut in 1997 when he was just 10 years old in the South Korean television drama Model. Pushing his career under the moniker Jang Hyuk, the actor appeared in a few other projects in the late 90s including in the teen series School and the film Zzang. In 1999, Hyuk was in his first music video. It was for the song “To Mother”, a popular South Korean song by the pop boyband Groove Over Dose (g.o.d).
In 2000, the budding entertainer tried his hands out at a rap career. Going by the stage name “TJ”, he shot several music videos in preparation for his debut album TJ Project which he released in the same year.
Jang Hyuk’s name finally began to push into the limelight after he was cast in the lead role of the martial arts action comedy film Volcano High in 2001. His performance in the film attracted praise from critics and fans alike.
He did not let the momentum he had built with Volcano High die off. He subsequently appeared in a string on successful projects including Jungle Juice, and the television drama Successful Story of a Bright Girl. His role in 2002’s Public Toilet also received special mentions in A-list events like the Venice Film Festival of 2002.
In a bid to keep up with the upward trajectory of his career, the actor pulled some strings to avoid his mandatory military service. However, after severe public condemnation, he tendered a public apology and enrolled for his service.
After his military service concluded in 2006, Jang Hyuk re-debuted in the drama series Thank You. His first international movie collaboration came in 2008 with the movie Dance of the Dragon. At the West Hollywood International Film Festival, Jang clinched the Best Actor Award for his role in the movie. He also made a brief showing in another international project, the Japanese drama Ryokiteki no Kanojo. The project was an adaptation of an earlier Korean movie My Sassy Girl.
By 2010, Jang Hyuk was an undisputed celebrity actor in his home country and in a good portion of Asia. He received a deluge of praise and positive reviews for his involvement in the 2010s The Slave Hunters. Critics and mentors alike, including his acting coach of 14 years, praised the actor’s ability to critically analyze whatever character he is given to portray.
At the KBS Drama Awards, the acting star received many awards and nominations at the 2011 International Emmy Awards. These included a nomination for Best Actor and the Grand Prize (Daesang).
Since 2013, Hyuk has been in several Korean variety shows such as Real Men (2013); The Friends in Croatia (2015); and Dragon Club – Childish Bromance (2017). He has also personally penned a series of essays detailing his life experiences. The collection was made into a book and published on August 6, 2013, under the title Jang Hyuk, Hot-Blooded Man.
The South Korean entertainer has received over 35 nominations and awards for his works since 2010. As of 2018, Jang has clinched over 20 awards at different award ceremonies such as KBS Drama Awards, MBC Drama Awards, APAN Star Awards, SBS Drama Awards, International Emmy Awards, and the Korean Film Shining Star Awards.
Who is Kim Yeo-jin? Wife, Family, Kids
In 2002, while Jang was still relatively unknown, he met Kim Yeo-jin. Kim at the time was his fitness instructor at a fitness center the actor was working out in. They started to date in the same year and six years later, in 2008, they were officially married. He had some close celebrity friends attend the wedding ceremony.
The couple’s union has produced three lovely children. The first was born in February 2008, and the other two followed in November 2009, and April 2015.