Joseph Kahn

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Joseph Kahn
Joseph kahn 01.jpg
Joseph Kahn at a screening of Detention at the Los Angeles Film School, April 2012
Born Ahn Jun-hee
(1972-10-12) October 12, 1972 (age 44)
Busan, South Korea
Occupation Film director, music video director
Years active 1990–present

Ahn Jun-hee (안준희; born October 12, 1972), known professionally as Joseph Kahn, is a Korean American film and music video director. Kahn has worked with various artists such as U2, Lady Gaga, Shakira, Aaliyah, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Mariah Carey, Christina Aguilera, 50 Cent, Britney Spears, Taylor Swift, Eminem, Janet Jackson, Maroon 5, and Katy Perry, and recently directed four Taylor Swift music videos.

Early life[edit]

Kahn was born Ahn Jun-hee (Hangul안준희) in Busan, South Korea.[1][2][3] His family moved to Jersey Village, Texas, a suburb of Houston, when Joseph was three.[2][4] After graduating from Jersey Village High School in 1990, Kahn went to New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. He later dropped out after one year to direct music videos.

Music video career[edit]

In 1999, Kahn started his own production company with Chris Lee, SuperMega Media, which is housed under HSI Productions. Kahn has worked with diverse artists such as Lady Gaga, Shakira, Aaliyah, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, DMX, Backstreet Boys, Mariah Carey, Jordin Sparks, Christina Aguilera, 50 Cent, Britney Spears, Destiny's Child, Kelly Clarkson, Taylor Swift, Muse, Ciara, Monica, Courtney Love, Rob Zombie, U2, The Chemical Brothers, Blink 182, Chris Brown, Eminem, TLC, Ashlee Simpson, Moby, Kesha, George Michael, Garbage, Korn, The Black Eyed Peas, Janet Jackson, BoA, Gwen Stefani, Brandy, AKB48, Pussycat Dolls, Sun Ho, Kylie Minogue, Maroon 5, Katy Perry, Imagine Dragons, and many more.

Kahn has collected multiple Music Video Production awards. He has won several MTV Video Music Awards with nominations for Best Video of the Year for Brandy & Monica "The Boy Is Mine", Britney Spears "Toxic", Chris Brown "Forever", the Pussycat Dolls "When I Grow Up", Eminem "We Made You", Britney Spears "Womanizer", and Eminem "Love the Way You Lie".

In 2002, Kahn won his first Grammy for Eminem's "Without Me" video which also won the MTV VMA's Best Video of the Year, as well as Best Direction. His video for Katy Perry "Waking Up In Vegas" won the MVPA 2009 Best Video of the Year.

Kahn's usage of Japanese pop culture in music videos first began with Janet Jackson's "Doesn't Really Matter" video. The video was also the most expensive video Kahn has directed and is among the most expensive of all time, costing over $2.5 million.[5]

In 2014, Kahn was given The Icon Award by the UK Music Video Awards.

In 2015, Kahn directed MTV's choices for Video of the Year, Best Pop Video, Best Female Video, and Best Collaboration for multiple videos from Taylor Swift's 1989 album. He won the Grammy Award for Best Music Video of 2015 for Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood" ft. Kendrick Lamar.

Film career[edit]

Kahn also directed the 2004 action film Torque starring Ice Cube. In May 2007 it was announced that he would direct an adaptation of William Gibson's science fiction classic, Neuromancer for producer Peter Hoffman. On May 7, 2010 Fangoria reported that Vincenzo Natali, the director of Cube and Splice, had taken over directing duties and will also rewrite the screenplay.[6] In 2010 Kahn directed the low-budget, self-financed horror comedy Detention.[7] After winning a number of audience favorite awards on the film festival circuit,[8] Detention was picked up for theatrical distribution by Sony for a release in 2012.[9] In July 2016, test footage for the DC Comics character Swamp Thing was released which was directed by Kahn for the upcoming Justice League Dark.[10]


Music videography[edit]

Year Artist Video
1990 Pain Teens "The Basement"
1992 Rake's Progress "Ghost Town"
1993 Die Krupps "Crossfire"
"To the Hilt"
DMG "You Don't Hear Me Doe"
Geto Boys "Straight Gangsterism"
1994 2 Low "Funky Lil Brotha"
5th Ward Boyz "Ghetto Funk"
Ahmad "You Gotta Be"
"Back in the Day"
Die Krupps featuring Biohazard "Bloodsuckers"
Willie Nelson "December Day"
Retarted Elf "What Up G?"
Widowmaker "Long Gone"
1995 AZ "Gimme Yours"
Clever Jeff "Year of the Fly MC"
Das EFX "Real Hip Hop"
Distinguished Gentlemen "Soakin' Wet"
Lords of the Underground "Faith"
"Neva Faded"
Onyx "All We Got Iz Us"
"Last Dayz"
Ruffnexx Sound System "Stick by Me"
Spahn Ranch "Locusts"
Veronica "Without Love"
Scarface featuring Ice Cube "Hand of the Dead Body"
Public Enemy "So Whatcha Gone Do Now"
1996 AZ "Do Or Die"
"Mo Money, Mo Murder, Mo Homicide"
Interstate "Peek in the Drawers"
Smoothe da Hustler "Hustler's Theme"
Sadat X "Hang 'Em High"
Montell Jordan featuring Slick Rick "I Like"
Nylon Moon "Sky Plus"
Aaliyah "If Your Girl Only Knew"
New Edition "Hit Me Off"
Warren G featuring Adina Howard "What's Love Got to Do with It"
Johnny Gill "Let's Get the Mood Right"
New Edition "I'm Still in Love with You"
Total "Kissin' You"
Shaq "You Can't Stop the Reign"
Tony! Toni! Toné! featuring DJ Quik "Let's Get Down"
1997 Korn "A.D.I.D.A.S"
Ice Cube "The World Is Mine"
Patricia Kaas "Quand J'ai Peur De Tout"
Faith No More "Last Cup of Sorrow"
Snoop Doggy Dogg "Tha Doggfather"
Eric Benet "True to Myself"
Backstreet Boys "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)"
Foxy Brown featuring Dru Hill "Big Bad Mamma"
SWV featuring Puff Daddy "Someone"
Bone Thugs-n-Harmony "If I Could Teach the World"
1998 Foxy Brown "Hot Spot"
Shernette May "All the Man That I Need"
Total "Trippin'"
Usher "Bedtime"
(version 1)
Montell Jordan "I Can Do That"
Montell Jordan featuring Master P and Silkk the Shocker "Let's Ride"
Mase featuring Total "What You Want"
Brandy and Monica "The Boy Is Mine"
Monica "The First Night"
Monster Magnet "Space Lord"
Bryan Adams "On a Day Like Today"
Rob Zombie "Living Dead Girl"
1999 Mobb Deep "Quiet Storm"
(version 1)
Jennifer Love Hewitt "How Do I Deal"
Monster Magnet "Powertrip"
Blackstreet featuring Janet Jackson, Ja Rule and Eve "Girlfriend/Boyfriend"
Sugar Ray "Someday"
Backstreet Boys "Larger than Life"
The Brian Setzer Orchestra "If You Can't Rock Me"
Muse "Muscle Museum"
2000 Hole "Be a Man"
Destiny's Child "Say My Name"
"Jumpin', Jumpin'
Sisqó "Thong Song"
Elton John "Someday Out of the Blue"
Christina Aguilera "I Turn to You"
"Por Siempre Tu"
Janet Jackson "Doesn't Really Matter"
LeAnn Rimes "I Need You"
Faith Hill "The Way You Love Me"
The Corrs "Irresistible"
Scarface "It Ain't"
Wu-Tang Clan "Protect Ya Neck (The Jump Off)"
"Gravel Pit"
Moby featuring Gwen Stefani "South Side"
Britney Spears "Stronger"
2001 Chayanne "Candela"
The Black Eyed Peas featuring Macy Gray "Request + Line"
"Request + Line" (Remix)
Papa Roach "Between Angels and Insects"
U2 "Elevation"
"Stuck in a Moment You Can't Get Out Of"
(version 2)
Aerosmith "Fly Away from Here"
D12 "Purple Pills"
Samantha Mumba "Baby, Come Over (This Is Our Night)"
Enrique Iglesias "Hero"
DMX "Who We Be"
Garbage "Cherry Lips"
2002 George Michael "Freeek!"
Moby "We Are All Made of Stars"
Eminem "Without Me"
Mariah Carey featuring Cam'ron "Boy (I Need You)"
Bon Jovi "Everyday"
2003 DMX "X Gon' Give It to Ya"
TLC "Damaged"
Nelly featuring Justin Timberlake "Work It"
Dido "White Flag"
Ricky Martin "Juramento"
Busta Rhymes featuring Pharrell Williams "Light Your Ass on Fire"
The Chemical Brothers featuring k-os "Get Yourself High"
2004 Britney Spears "Toxic"
Alsou "Always on My Mind"
Blink-182 "Always"
Ashlee Simpson "La La"
The Offspring "(Can't Get My) Head Around You"
2005 Kelly Clarkson "Behind These Hazel Eyes"
Joss Stone "Spoiled"
Rob Thomas "Lonely No More"
Jamiroquai "Feels Just Like It Should"
Backstreet Boys "Incomplete"
2006 Kelly Clarkson "Walk Away"
Shayne Ward "No Promises"
The Pink Spiders "Little Razorblade"
Muse "Knights of Cydonia"
Ciara featuring Chamillionaire "Get Up"
Janet Jackson featuring Khia "So Excited"
Gwen Stefani "The Sweet Escape"
2007 Kelly Clarkson "Never Again"
50 Cent featuring Justin Timberlake and Timbaland "Ayo Technology"
2008 Ladytron "Ghosts"
Chris Brown "Forever"
The Pussycat Dolls "When I Grow Up"
"I Hate This Part"
Britney Spears "Womanizer"
2009 Lady Gaga "Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)"
BoA "I Did It for Love"
Katy Perry "Waking Up in Vegas"
Eminem "We Made You"
Kelly Clarkson "Already Gone"
Ester Dean featuring Chris Brown "Drop It Low"
Sun Ho "Fancy Free"
Chris Brown featuring Lil Wayne and Swizz Beatz "I Can Transform Ya"
Chris Brown "Crawl"
2010 Helping Haiti "Everybody Hurts"
Kylie Minogue "All the Lovers"
Maroon 5 "Misery"
Eminem featuring Rihanna "Love the Way You Lie"
Nicole Scherzinger "Poison"
Keri Hilson "Pretty Girl Rock"
Dr. Dre "Kush"
2011 Eminem "Space Bound"
2012 AKB48 "Gingham Check"
Robbie Williams "Candy"
Ciara "Got Me Good"
2013 Priyanka Chopra "In My City"[11]
Mariah Carey featuring Miguel "#Beautiful"
Britney Spears "Perfume"
2014 Shakira featuring Rihanna "Can't Remember to Forget You"
Taylor Swift "Blank Space"
2015 "Bad Blood"
"Wildest Dreams"
"Out of the Woods"
2016 OneRepublic "Wherever I Go"
Artists of Then, Now & Forever "Forever Country"
2017 Imagine Dragons "Thunder"


  1. ^ Jeong, Cheon-gi (정천기) (April 25, 2001). "American music video director Joseph Kahn enters Korea (美 뮤직비디오 감독 조셉 칸 한국 진출)" (in Korean). SBS. Retrieved June 17, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Han, Brian (November 24, 2014). "Taylor Swift 'Blank Space' director Joseph Kahn digs deep into Korean roots". The Korea Times. Retrieved June 17, 2015. 
  3. ^ Yun, Hyeon-jin (윤현진) (June 16, 2009). "Joseph Kahn: "Korea should be proud of BoA" (interview) [조셉칸 "한국은 보아를 자랑스러워하라" (인터뷰)]" (in Korean). Newsen. Retrieved June 17, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Bio". Retrieved June 17, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Asia Pacific Arts: APA Top Ten: Joseph Kahn music videos". Entertainment Weekly. Diehl, Matt. 2008-10-17. Archived from the original on 2008-10-22. Retrieved 2015-05-30. 
  6. ^ Gingold, Michael. "Natali takes "NEUROMANCER" for the big screen". Retrieved 2010-05-07. 
  7. ^ "Celebrated Music Video Director Shows Up for 'Detention'". 
  8. ^ "Badassdigest". 
  9. ^ "Sony Pictures Worldwide Opts For 'Detention'". 
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Priyanka Chopra's In My City music video out". Indian Express. 2013-02-08. Retrieved 2014-06-04. 

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