|Other names||Ko Hyun-jung|
|Education||Dongguk University - Performing Arts|
|Spouse(s)||Chung Yong-jin (1995–2003; divorced)|
|Revised Romanization||Go Hyeon-jeong|
Go Hyun-jung (Korean: 고현정; born March 2, 1971) is a South Korean actress. She debuted in the entertainment scene as a Miss Korea runner-up in 1989 and went on to star in Hourglass , one of the highest-rated and critically acclaimed dramas in Korean television history. She retired after marrying chaebol Chung Yong-jin in 1995, then returned to acting after their divorce in 2003. Go has since regained her top star status in Korea, becoming the highest-paid actress on TV after the success of her series Queen Seondeok and Daemul.
Life and career
Early career and retirement
Go Hyun-jung graduated from Dongguk University with a degree in Performing Arts. She was a runner-up in the Miss Korea pageant in 1989, which launched her acting career. Her big break came in the 1995 SBS drama Sandglass. The drama dealt with modern Korean history from 1970 to the 1990s and was one of the highest rated dramas in Korean television history, with average ratings of 50.8% and a peak of 64.5%. People would rush home just to see a new episode, saying “it's time to go home,” which meant they had to go home to watch Sandglass. However, following her marriage, Go announced her retirement from the industry.
Television comeback and films
Not content with her small screen success, Go began her late-blooming movie career by going against her image and taking pay cuts to star in non-mainstream films. She was part of the ensemble cast in arthouse films Woman on the Beach and Like You Know It All by auteur Hong Sang-soo. She then starred in Actresses, a semi-improvisational movie featuring six actresses each playing themselves. Director E J-yong, who was first inspired to make the film after going out for a drink with actresses Youn Yuh-jung and Go in 2007, said he focused on conveying the "reality" of the actresses' lives.
Go regained her reputation as Korea's top actress in 2009 after playing femme fatale royal concubine Lady Mishil in the hit historical drama Queen Seondeok. She was not the titular lead character, but her interpretation of the power-hungry main rival to the queen was impressive enough to make viewers remember the show as Mishil's story. The drama reached ratings of over 40 percent and won her the highest award at the MBC Drama Awards and Baeksang Arts Awards. Go was voted Actress of the Year Gallup polls for two consecutive years.
That same year, Go surprised fans not only by appearing on a TV entertainment show (popular talk show Golden Fishery hosted by comedian Kang Ho-dong) for the first time in 15 years, but also by very frankly addressing rumors surrounding her shrouded personal life. Once notorious for declining to appear on entertainment programs other than dramas or films, she maintained a mysterious image for a long time. Her new easy-going, and down-to-earth attitude seemingly reflected a philosophical view of the many ups and downs in life. In interviews with print and online magazines, Go has even expressed her feelings towards her ex-husband and children.
Twenty-one years after making her acting debut, Go held her very first fanmeeting on June 13, 2010—she held a press conference beforehand, sang songs for the 500 fans present, answered questions, and prepared video clips.
Though plagued with production issues prior to airing, Go returned to television ten months later in Daemul, which means "big shot" or "big thing" in Korean. In the drama, Go plays Seo Hye-rim, an anchorwoman who enters politics after the death of her war correspondent husband and becomes the nation's first female president. The 24-episode series revolves around an ordinary woman in extraordinary circumstances: how and why she became head of state and also the complicated schemes and plots surrounding her, her presidency, allies and enemies. Besides its star-studded cast (Go starred opposite Korean Wave star Kwon Sang-woo), the show's ratings was helped by its controversial plot, which included events from Korea's recent past such as a presidential impeachment and the sinking of a Navy warship, and it topped its time slot for 11 consecutive weeks. Go repeated her feat by winning the top prize at the 2010 SBS Drama Awards. According to industry sources, Go was reportedly paid ₩55 million (US$51,000) per episode, setting a new salary record for a Korean actress.
Go also narrated the SBS documentary The Last Tundra - Movie Edition (also known as The Final Tundra - Cinema Edition) which offered a rare glimpse into the life of the Nenets, the last reindeer herding nomads living in the Siberian tundra.
2012's Miss Go (international title: Miss Conspirator) was her first commercial film, and the first film she headlined. The action comedy is about a nerdy, reclusive cartoonist with a severe case of sociophobia who somehow gets mixed up in a drug deal involving one of the biggest organized crime groups in Korea, and is forced to deal with her phobia and interact with others as she runs from the police.
Go returned to television in 2013 with The Queen's Classroom, a remake of the 2005 Japanese drama Jyoou no Kyoushitsu. The story depicts the struggle between a ferocious and ruthless elementary school teacher and her class.
In 2016, Go starred in the family melodrama Dear My Friends, playing a freelance translator, a complex and sometimes abrasive character, who observes the lives of the old people surrounding her.
In 2018, Go starred in the legal thriller drama Return. The drama revolves around a murder case that involves powerful members of an elite class, with Go playing the role of a rags-to-riches lawyer with secrets. However halfway through the series, it was announced that she dropped out due to irreconcilable differences with the PD.
Go is set to star in the second season of My Lawyer, Mr. Jo, which will premiere in 2019.
In 2010, after her contract ended with De Chocolate E&TF, she set up her own talent agency with her brother Go Byung-cheol as CEO, called IOK Company. In 2012, Spring Day costar and close friend Jo In-sung also signed on.
She published a book on skin care titled Go Hyun-jung's Texture in 2011. The actress has always been admired for her youthful appearance, largely attributable to her young and healthy skin which had made fans wonder about her beauty secrets. The book, arranged in the format of a documentary, contains Go's own philosophy on beauty classified under six themes—texture, color, light, line, formality and scent—as well as her ideas on leading a sound and healthy lifestyle in general. The book is co-written by another writer who observed the actress's everyday life for six months, describing it in detail. The book became a bestseller, with all 30,000 copies of the first edition selling out in just two days of release.
At the press event for her eponymously named talk show GO Show (which premiered on April 6, 2012), Go quipped, "I became an MC because I wanted to. I want to meet a lot of people and hear their stories. I have always wanted to do that and SBS gave me that opportunity." Given her reputation for saying what is on her mind (one that has won the actress many fans), concerns arose as to how her work as show host would affect the impressive image of flawless elegance and sophistication she has gained over the years. But Go harbored little anxiety over how her public image might change, saying, "I think I can afford to put a small dent in my image and have some fun." Co-hosted by singer-songwriter Yoon Jong-shin, and comedians Jung Hyung-don and Kim Young-chul, the talk show was cancelled after eight months on the air.
In 2014, she began teaching acting at her alma mater Dongguk University, as an adjunct professor in the theater department. Back in 2006, she donated a ₩100 million scholarship fund to the school.
In 2015, Go starred in her own reality show, which tracks her trip to Tokyo and films her preparation to launch her travel book.
In May 1995, at the peak of her career, Go married Chung Yong-jin, vice chairman and CEO of Shinsegae Group and grandson of Samsung founder Lee Byung-chull. The two first met in New York purely by coincidence when Chung had offered to help Go find her seat at the Winter Garden Theatre because her English was so bad. After the most talked-about wedding in Korea at the time, Go announced her retirement from acting to focus on her new role as a chaebol's wife. They had two children together, a boy (born in 1998) and a girl (born in 2000).
But after eight years of marriage, a messy divorce followed in November 2003, during which she lost complete custody of her children. Two years after the divorce, Shinsegae passed down a ruling stating that none of its department stores would be allowed to display any Go-related material, including any of her product endorsements.
|1990||Love on a Jujube Tree||Hwang Mal-sook||KBS|
|Eyes of Dawn||Ahn Myeong-ji||MBC|
|1992||A Love Without Fear||Shin Kyung-ae||SBS|
|Women's Room||Yoon Hee-soo||MBC|
|1993||My Mother's Sea||Kim Young-seo||MBC|
|2005||Spring Day||Seo Jung-eun|
|2006||What's Up Fox?||Go Byung-hee||MBC|
|2007||H.I.T||Lt. Cha Soo-kyung|
|2013||The Queen's Classroom||Ma Yeo-jin||MBC|
|2016||Dear My Friends||Park Wan||tvN|
|2018||Return||Choi Ja-hye (Ep. 1-15)||SBS|
|2019||My Lawyer, Mr. Jo 2: Crime and Punishment||Lee Ja-Gyeong||KBS2|
|2006||Woman on the Beach||Kim Mun-suk|
|2009||Like You Know It All||Go Soon|
|Actresses||Herself||Also credited as co-screenwriter|
|2011||The Last Tundra - Movie Edition||Documentary narrator|
|The Day He Arrives||Cinema fan (cameo)|
|2012||Miss Conspirator||Chun Soo-ro|
|2018||A Tiger in Winter||Yoo-jeong|
|1990-1991||Show! Saturday Express||Host|
|1994||Between Night and Music|
|2010||Beop Jeong: May All Beings Be Happy||MBC||Documentary narrator|
|The Last Tundra||SBS|
|Album information||Track listing|
|Watercolor Painting in a Rainy Day 2 OST
|Strange Happiness (낯선 행복)
|2011||Go Hyun-jung's Texture
Awards and nominations
|1989||33rd Miss Korea Pageant||First Runner-up (Miss World Korea)||N/A||Won|
|1992||28th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best New Actress (TV)||Love on a Jujube Tree||Won|
|1993||MBC Drama Awards||Excellence Award, Actress||My Mother's Sea||Won|
|1994||30th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actress (TV)||Nominated|
|1995||31st Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actress (TV)||Sandglass||Nominated|
|2000||SBS Drama Awards||Big Star Award||N/A||Won|
|2005||41st Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actress (TV)||Spring Day||Nominated|
|SBS Drama Awards||Top 10 Stars||Won|
|2006||7th Busan Film Critics Awards||Best New Actress||Woman on the Beach||Won|
|5th Korean Film Awards||Best Actress||Nominated|
|Best New Actress||Nominated|
|MBC Drama Awards||Top Excellence Award, Actress||What's Up Fox?||Nominated|
|2007||43rd Baeksang Arts Awards||Best New Actress (Film)||Woman on the Beach||Nominated|
|44th Grand Bell Awards||Best New Actress||Nominated|
|MBC Drama Awards||Top Excellence Award, Actress||H.I.T||Nominated|
|2009||Broadcaster Awards||Best Actress||Queen Seondeok||Won|
|Job Korea||Actress of the Year||Won|
|MBC Drama Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang)||Won|
|2010||22nd Korea Producers & Directors' (PD) Awards||Best Performer, TV Actress category||Won|
|46th Baeksang Arts Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang) for TV||Won|
|Best Actress (TV)||Nominated|
|37th Korea Broadcasting Awards||Best Actress||Won|
|5th Seoul International Drama Awards||Outstanding Korean Actress||Won|
|SBS Drama Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang)||Daemul||Won|
|Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Drama Special||Nominated|
|Top 10 Stars||Won|
|2013||6th Korea Drama Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang)||The Queen's Classroom||Nominated|
|MBC Drama Awards||Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Miniseries||Nominated|
|2016||tvN10 Awards||Best Actress||Dear My Friends||Nominated|
- "10LINE: Ko Hyun-jung". 10Asia. November 3, 2009.
- "Miss Korea 1989" (in Korean). Hankook Ilbo. Archived from the original on 2012-01-15. Retrieved 2012-11-02.
- "SBS: The Dawn of a New Golden Age". YesAsia. September 9, 2006.
- "Resilient actress relishes dramatic return" Archived 2013-01-26 at Archive.today. Korea JoongAng Daily. November 4, 2010
- ""I Want a Second Spring Day"". The Dong-a Ilbo. November 9, 2004.
- "TV dramas woo viewers with top actresses". The Korea Herald. January 15, 2005.
- "'Boorish' women knocked out 'Cinderellas'". The Korea Herald via Hancinema. December 21, 2005.
- "Ko Hyun-jung on How to Play Tough". The Chosun Ilbo. March 23, 2007.
- "Ko Hyun-jung: More at Ease in Her 30s". The Chosun Ilbo. August 18, 2006.
- "Ko Hyun-jung to Make Film Debut". KBS Global. March 22, 2006.
- "해변의 연인 (The Woman on The Beach) Presentation Report". Twitch Film. April 17, 2006.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Poised for Belated Big-Screen Debut". The Chosun Ilbo. April 17, 2006.
- "Bed Scenes". The Dong-a Ilbo. April 18, 2006.
- "Ko Hyeon-jeong to Debut on Big Screen". The Korea Times via Hancinema. April 18, 2006.
- "Actress Ko Back With First Film". The Korea Times via Hancinema. August 22, 2006.
- "Actress takes off mask in Woman on the Beach". The Korea Herald via Hancinema. September 13, 2006.
- "Fact and fiction merge as South Korea's leading ladies come together". Yonhap. December 1, 2009.
- "Actresses is a miracle achieved, says Koh (Part 1)". 10Asia. November 23, 2009.
- "Actresses is a miracle achieved, says Koh (Part 2)". 10Asia. November 23, 2009.
- "New Epic Drama to Bring Rivalry, Love to TV". The Korea Times. May 9, 2009.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Talks About Changes On Screen and Off". The Chosun Ilbo. June 6, 2009.
- "Supporting Roles Stealing Spotlight". The Korea Times. August 3, 2009.
- "10 Awards - Top 10 People of 2009". 10Asia. December 23, 2009.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Wins Top Drama Award". The Korea Times. December 31, 2009.
- "Ko Hyun-jung, Haeundae win grand prize at PaekSang Arts Awards". 10Asia. March 29, 2010.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Picked Actress of the Year Again". The Chosun Ilbo. December 28, 2010.
- "Actress Ko Reveals Truth About Rumors". The Korea Times. January 22, 2009.
- 고현정 ‘무릎팍도사’ 출연, 득일까 독일까 (in Korean). Newsen. December 21, 2010.
- "Ko Hyun Jung: 'Fans Are Reliable Because They Trust Me'". KBS Global. June 15, 2010.
- "Producers Sue Ko Hyun-jung Over Unmade Soap". The Chosun Ilbo. August 21, 2009.
- "Stars Sued for Contract Breach". The Korea Times. August 21, 2009.
- "Ko Hyun-joung to turn 1st female president in new drama". 10Asia. December 31, 2009.
- "Actress Ko to Return as President in New Drama". The Korea Times. March 17, 2008.
- "Will female president appeal to TV drama fans?". The Korea Times. October 5, 2010.
- "SBS The President ends run on top for 11th consecutive week". 10Asia December 24, 2010.
- "Ko Hyun-jung wins grand prize at SBS Drama Awards". 10Asia. January 3, 2011.
- "Koh Hyun-jung, highest paid Korean actress". The Korea Times. April 12, 2011.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Sets New Soap Opera Earnings Record". The Chosun Ilbo. April 12, 2011.
- "Documentary The Last Tundra shows culture's respect for nature". The Korea Herald. February 13, 2011.
- "Miss Conspirator has Ko Hyun-jung in unfamiliar role". Korea JoongAng Daily. June 25, 2012. Archived from the original on November 12, 2012.
- "Ko to return as reclusive cartoonist". The Korea Herald. May 29, 2012.
- "Ko Hyun-jung goes nerdy in Miss Conspirator" Archived 2012-06-06 at the Wayback Machine. Korea JoongAng Daily. June 1, 2012.
- "Miss Go Go Hyunjung's 1000 different facial expressions". StarN News. June 5, 2012.
- "Miss Go's Go Hyun Jung Speaks Up about Her Strong Personality". enewsWorld. June 14, 2012.
- "Hyunjung Go, "Underworld scene was scary"" Archived 2012-06-19 at the Wayback Machine. Korea JoongAng Daily. June 15, 2012.
- "Actress Go Hyun-jung casted in Queen's Classroom". The Korea Herald. April 12, 2013.
- "Go Hyun-jung to play role of teacher". Korea JoongAng Daily. April 13, 2013. Archived from the original on June 29, 2013.
- "Ko Hyun-jung to star in new drama". The Korea Times. April 14, 2013. Archived from the original on 2014-02-01.
- "Will Ko Hyun-jung Become the True Queen of the Classroom?". 10Asia. June 11, 2013. Archived from the original on 2014-02-03.
- "Zo In-sung and Go Hyun-jung to star in new tvN drama". Kpop Herald. March 1, 2016.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Faces off Against Veteran Acting Masters". The Chosun Ilbo. May 13, 2016.
- "KO Hyun-jung Returns with A WINTER GUEST SCARIER THAN A TIGER". Korean Film Biz Zone.
- "Murder-mystery thriller 'Return' aims to show new 'genre drama'". Yonhap News Agency. January 15, 2018.
- "Ko Hyun-jung, Lee Jin-wook to Star in New Crime TV Series". The Chosun Ilbo. January 4, 2018.
- "SBS drops Go Hyun-jung from 'Return'". Kpop Herald. February 8, 2018.
- "Park Shin-yang, Go Hyun-jung cast for 'My Lawyer, Mr. Jo 2'". Kpop Herald. 5 November 2018.
- "Actresses Choosing To Be Managed By Family". KBS World. December 10, 2010.
- "Zo In-sung signs with Ko Hyun-jung's agency". 10Asia. March 2, 2012.
- "Actress' skin care secret: Don't fret" Archived 2012-07-18 at Archive.today. Korea JoongAng Daily. April 27, 2011.
- "Actress Ko Hyun-jung publishes book on skin care". 10Asia. April 25, 2011.
- "Actress Ko Hyun-jung's skincare book selling fast". 10Asia. May 3, 2011.
- "Ko Hyeon-jeong says hosting own show not a cakewalk". The Korea Herald. March 28, 2012.
- "Go Hyun Jung's Go Show to be Cancelled". enewsWorld. October 18, 2012.
- Park, Si-soo (March 20, 2014). "Entertainers take on teaching role". The Korea Times.
- "Ko Hyun-jung to Teach Acting at Dongguk University". The Chosun Ilbo. March 4, 2014.
- "Ko Hyun-jung Launches Own Fashion Brand". The Chosun Ilbo. October 1, 2014.
- "Korean Stars Engage in Beauty Business in China". China Topix. January 8, 2016.
- "Actress Ko Hyun-jung to star in reality show". Korea JoongAng Daily. December 8, 2015.
- "Rich husbands wanted, with nice homes abroad" Archived 2012-07-11 at Archive.today. Korea JoongAng Daily. April 24, 2007.
- "Actress Ko Reveals Truth About Rumors". The Korea Times. January 22, 2009.
- "비오는 날 수채화 2 (ost)" (in Korean). ManiaDB. Retrieved 2014-07-20.
- 고현정 - 낯선행복 (in Korean). ManiaDB. Retrieved 2014-07-20.
- "三人三色 (omnibus)" (in Korean). ManiaDB. Retrieved 2014-07-20.
- "Kim Yu-na Picked as Person of the Year". The Korea Times. December 14, 2009.
- "Brilliant Legacy, Chuno named top dramas in 37th Korea Broadcasting Prizes" Archived 2012-09-13 at the Wayback Machine. Manila Bulletin. September 4, 2010.
- "The Slave Hunters Wins Seoul International Drama Award". KBS Global. August 24, 2010.
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