Han Ga-in

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Han Ga-in
In October 2012
Born Kim Hyun-joo
(1982-02-25) 25 February 1982 (age 36)
Seoul, South Korea
Nationality South Korean
Education Kyung Hee University
(Tourism Management)[1]
Agent BH Entertainment
Spouse(s) Yeon Jung-hoon (m. 2005)
Children 1
Korean name
Revised Romanization Han Ga-in
McCune–Reischauer Han Kain
Birth name
Revised Romanization Gim Hyeon-ju
McCune–Reischauer Kim Hyŏnju

Han Ga-in (born Kim Hyun-joo on February 25, 1982) is a South Korean actress. She starred in television series Yellow Handkerchief and Terms of Endearment early in her career, and became a sought-after model in commercials. Her projects in 2012 were hugely successful, with her period drama Moon Embracing the Sun topping the TV ratings chart, and her film Architecture 101 becoming a box office hit.


Han Ga-in attended Seoul Gusan Elementary School (서울구산초등학교), Sunjung Middle School (선정중학교) and Baehwa Girls' High School (배화여자고등학교). On 22 December, 2000, while attending high school, Han Ga-in participated in KBS1 "Challenge Golden Bell" and showed off her ability to go up to the 34th stage. It is the skill of a high school student who scored 384 points out of 400 points on CSAT.[2]


As a high school student, Han Ga-in appeared on KBS's TV show called GOLDENBELL (도전! 골든벨)[2][3] and was also captured in footage of interviews with other students. Entertainment bigwigs spotted her in the news clip and immediately went to her school to offer her a part.[4] She debuted in an Asiana Airlines commercial in 2002, and was cast in the KBS2 drama Sunshine Hunting. She subsequently appeared in Yellow Handkerchief and made her big-screen debut in Once Upon a Time in High School. In 2004, she took on the leading role in Terms of Endearment and won an Excellence award at the KBS Drama Awards.[5][6]

In 2005, Han acted in Super Rookie, a satire on Korea's corporate culture and unemployment among the country's younger generation. It drew solid viewership ratings in the 20% range, and won Han the Excellence Award at the MBC Drama Awards.[7] The drama was also reportedly well-received by Japanese viewers and contributed to Han's popularity in the country.[8] This was followed by leading roles in Dr. Kkang and Witch Yoo Hee.[9]

After Witch Yoo Hee wrapped in 2007, Han publicly criticized the director and writers for the drama's poor quality. She went on a three-year hiatus afterwards, merely starring in advertisements. While she soon became one of the most sought-after faces in the TV commercial industry, Han struggled to overcome her image as strictly a pretty face rather than a serious actress. Over the past decade of drama appearances, the popular actress repeatedly played familiar characters and her performances failed to wow audiences.[5]

Mainly categorized as a "CF star," Han wanted to change that misconception with her comeback in 2010.[10] In Bad Guy, she attempted to transform her image as a pure and innocent girl to a materialistic woman who dreams of climbing the social ladder.[11][12]

2012 was the most successful year of Han's career yet. She first starred in period drama, Moon Embracing the Sun, in which she played the heroine, an amnesiac noblewoman-turned-shaman.[13] The drama not only ranked number one in its time slot throughout its run but achieved a peak recorded viewer rating of 42.2 percent,[14] thereby earning the "national drama" status.[15] This was followed up with a leading role in romantic film Architecture 101, which got rave reviews and set a new box-office record as the highest-grossing Korean melodrama.[5][16][17]

Han was managed by J. One Plus Entertainment from 2009 to 2011,[18][19][20] and when her contract expired, she signed with Lee Byung-hun's agency, BH Entertainment in December 2012.[21]

In 2018, Han returned to the small screen after six years in mystery thriller Mistress.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Han married actor Yeon Jung-hoon on April 26, 2005; they previously starred together on the 2003 TV series Yellow Handkerchief.[23][24] After a miscarriage in 2014,[25][26][27][28] her agency confirmed in November 2015 that Han is 6 months pregnant.[29][30] On April 13, 2016, she gave birth to a girl, her first child.[31]



Year Title Role
2004 Once Upon a Time in High School Eun-joo
2012 Architecture 101 Yang Seo-yeon (present)

Television series[edit]

Year Title Role Network
2002 Sunshine Hunting Joo-Young KBS2
2003 Yellow Handkerchief Jo Sun-joo KBS1
2004 Terms of Endearment Kang Eun-pah KBS2
2005 Super Rookie Lee Mi-ok MBC
2006 Dr. Kkang Kim Yoo-na
2007 Witch Yoo Hee Ma Yoo-hee SBS
2010 Bad Guy Moon Jae-in
2012 Moon Embracing the Sun Heo Yeon-woo/Wol MBC
2018 Mistress Jang Se-yeon OCN

Variety show[edit]

Year Title Network Notes
2003 Comedy Town SBS
Entertainment Weekly KBS2 Host

Music video appearances[edit]

Year Song Title Artist
2005 "Only Wind, Only Wind" SG Wannabe
2012 "Yeosu Night Sea" Busker Busker

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2003 KBS Drama Awards Best New Actress Yellow Handkerchief Won
2004 40th Baeksang Arts Awards[32] Most Popular Actress (Film) Once Upon a Time in High School Won
25th Blue Dragon Film Awards[33] Best New Actress Nominated
3rd Korean Film Awards Best New Actress Nominated
KBS Drama Awards[6] Excellence Award, Actress Terms of Endearment Won
Best Couple Award with Song Il-gook Won
2005 MBC Drama Awards Excellence Award, Actress Super Rookie Won
2012 7th Seoul International Drama Awards Outstanding Korean Actress Moon Embracing the Sun Nominated
1st K-Drama Star Awards Top Excellence Award, Actress Nominated
MBC Drama Awards[34] Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Miniseries Won


  1. ^ "한가인" Archived 2012-03-23 at the Wayback Machine.. Nate (in Korean). Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  2. ^ a b "한가인 골든벨 출연모습 "범접할 수 없는 우등생포스"". Zum News. 19 Nov 2012. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  3. ^ "한가인 여신 샷 "12년 전 골든벨 출연 때부터 인증된 미모"". OBS News. 5 January 2013. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  4. ^ "History Attests to Korean Stars' All-Natural Looks". The Chosun Ilbo. 6 June 2006. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  5. ^ a b c "Han Ga-in struggles to overcome innocent image" Archived 2012-05-06 at the Wayback Machine.. Korea Joongang Daily. 4 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  6. ^ a b "Winners at the 2004 KBS DRAMA AWARDS". Korea Tourism Organization. 6 January 2005. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  7. ^ "Rookie Employees Talk About the New Hit Show Super Rookie". The Donga Ilbo. 
  8. ^ "Is it all over already? Gloomy signs overshadow rosy statistics of 'Hallyu'". Hancinema. 
  9. ^ "< Dr. Gang >'s Smooth Launching with Favorable Popularity". MBC Global. 14 February 2008. 
  10. ^ "Top Actresses Heading Toward Small Screen". The Korea Times. 8 February 2010. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  11. ^ "Will Kim, Han create magic thru Bad Boy". The Korea Times. 25 May 2010. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  12. ^ "INTERVIEW: Bad Boy actresses Han Ga-in and Oh Yun-soo". 10Asia. 16 June 2010. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  13. ^ Lee, In-kyung (14 December 2011). "Han Ga In Shows Off Her Elegant Beauty". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. 
  14. ^ "Hit drama ends with record ratings". Korea JoongAng Daily. 
  15. ^ "'The Moon That Embraces The Sun' breaks 40%, but will not be extended". Allkpop. 
  16. ^ "Han Ga-in and other Introduction to Architecture stars talk about their first loves" Archived 2012-07-16 at Archive.is. Korea Joongang Daily. 15 March 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  17. ^ "Han Ga-in Still Wrestling with Innocent Image". The Chosun Ilbo. 31 March 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  18. ^ "Han Ga-in signs with Kim Ha-neul's agency". 10Asia. 29 October 2009. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  19. ^ "Official Han Ga-in website open today". 10Asia. 27 May 2010. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  20. ^ "Han Ga-in renews contract with J.One+ Entertainment". 10Asia. 15 September 2011. Retrieved 2012-10-08.
  21. ^ "Han Ga-in Joins Lee Byung-hun's Agency". 10Asia. 23 December 2012. Archived from the original on 12 May 2014. Retrieved 2012-12-27. 
  22. ^ "Han Ga-in to Make Return with Remake of British TV Series". The Chosun Ilbo. 14 March 2018. 
  23. ^ "Yeon Jung-hoon and Han Ka-in Register Their Marriage". KBS Global. 26 April 2005. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  24. ^ "Han Ga-in says she wants a son like Yeon Jung-hoon". Korea JoongAng Daily. 15 November 2012. Archived from the original on 20 November 2012. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  25. ^ "Actress Han Ga-in pregnant with first child". The Korea Herald. 22 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-24. 
  26. ^ "1st baby for celebrity couple". Korea JoongAng Daily. 23 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-23. 
  27. ^ "Actor Couple Have Baby on Way After Nearly a Decade". The Chosun Ilbo. 23 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-23. 
  28. ^ "Han Ga-in miscarried: agency". Korea JoongAng Daily. 25 September 2014. Retrieved 2014-10-12. 
  29. ^ "Actress Han Ga-in to be mother". The Korea Times. 23 November 2015. Retrieved 2015-12-08. 
  30. ^ "Han Ga-in, Youn Jung-hoon are expecting". Korea JoongAng Daily. 24 November 2015. Retrieved 2015-12-10. 
  31. ^ "'Moon Embracing the Sun' actress gives birth to baby girl". Yonhap News Agency. 13 April 2016. 
  32. ^ "40th Baeksang Arts Awards". Baeksang Arts Awards (in Korean). Archived from the original on 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2012-11-13. 
  33. ^ "25th Blue Dragon Film Awards". Blue Dragon Film Awards (in Korean). Retrieved 2012-11-13. 
  34. ^ "Big Winners of 2012 Announced at Drama Awards Ceremonies of Major Broadcasters". 10Asia. 1 January 2013. 

External links[edit]