Kim Myung-min

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This is a Korean name; the family name is Kim.
Kim Myung-min
KimMyungMin Sept09.jpg
Kim Myung-min in Seoul in September 2009
Born (1972-10-08) 8 October 1972 (age 43)
South Korea
Occupation Actor
Years active 1996–present
Korean name
Revised Romanization Gim Myeong-min
McCune–Reischauer Kim Myŏng-min

Kim Myung-min (Hangul김명민, born 8 October 1972) is a South Korean actor most widely known for playing the title role in the KBS historical TV drama Immortal Admiral Yi Sun-shin. In 2005 he was named best actor at the KBS Acting Awards for this role.

Since that time his reputation as an actor of wide range and professional dedication has grown. Playing the driven, amoral surgeon Jang Joon-hyuk in the 2007 MBC TV series White Tower he earned the nickname Myung-min Bon Joa meaning the "true guru in acting" in Korean.

In 2008, after five months of preparation learning to simulate the skills of an orchestra conductor, he played the main role in the 18-episode MBC series Beethoven Virus as Kang Ma-e (Kang Gun-woo, or Maestro Kang).[1][2] He was given the Grand Prize for this role at the 2008 Korea Drama Awards and also won the Grand Prize at 2008 MBC Drama Awards.


Early years[edit]

Kim Myung-min debuted as an actor when he won the 6th SBS public actor contest in 1996.[3][4][5] Over the next five years he appeared in a number of television series in various supporting roles. It was the movie Sorum in 2001 that made his name known as a lead actor. During this time he worked on several film projects, many of which ended unfinished, mostly due to financial problems. He also suffered from injuries that occurred while he was shooting action scenes.[6]

When he starred in the 2004 KBS family drama More Beautiful than a Flower, he was expected to have a successful career as a lead actor. But all of his contracts fell through. He tried many things to restart his career but failed. Finally, he decided on emigrating to New Zealand to study and go into business.[7][8] At the last minute he was offered the role in Immortal Admiral Yi Sun-shin, a 104-episode TV series that aired in 2004-2005 that tells about Korea's beloved hero of the Imjin War, Admiral Yi Sun-sin, that brought him into the spotlight.[9] The Best Actor award was given to him, ending his career as a nameless actor.[10][11]

Later career[edit]

He has been playing leading roles in movies and TV series since Immortal Admiral Yi Sun-shin. A comical ex-gangster Oh Dal-gun in Bad Family, a detective in Open City. He played a surgeon in two productions: as Jang Joon-hyuk in White Tower and as Ryu Jae-woo in Wide Awake. Through his acclaimed performance in White Tower, he gained the nickname Myung-min Bon Joa which means "the true guru in acting." Unlike many actors and actresses who make strong impressions through certain roles and become typecast with the viewers, he has been very successful in creating new characters and impressions as he plays different roles. He has taken roles that usually require deeper knowledge of the professions, such as military admiral, surgeon, and orchestra conductor. His performance as a maestro in the 2008 TV series Beethoven Virus created a sensation in Korea referred to as "Kang Mae Syndrome" and earned him fresh acclaim from critics and viewers.).[12]

In late 2008, it was announced that his next project is a film about a character living with Lou Gehrig's Disease, titled Closer to Heaven.[13][14][15] To realistically portray the role of the dying patient, Kim painstakingly lost 20 kilos during the course of the filming. He was widely commended for this feat and thus gained the coveted Best Actor Awards in Korea's leading film ceremonies, the 46th Grand Bell Awards[16] and the 30th Blue Dragon Film Awards.[17] The movie was released in South Korean theaters on 24 September 2009 where it remained on top of the charts for 3 consecutive weeks and garnered more than 2 million visitors.[18]

Closer to Heaven was followed by another film, Man of Vendetta, where Kim portrayed the role of a father for the first time[19] The character, Joo Young Soo, is an ex-pastor who tracks down the kidnapper of his 5-year old daughter, 8 years after she had gone missing. Production started in January 2010 and the movie was released on July 1, 2010. Though the movie was rated 18+, it proved to be successful in the boxoffice.[20]

In January 2011, Kim appeared as Joseon's Sherlock Holmes in highly popular historical comedy-mystery film Detective K: Secret of the Virtuous Widow.[21] The movie was released on Lunar New Year and it topped the charts for a few weeks. Blockbuster Detective K was followed by sports movie, Pacemaker, where he played the role of Man-ho, a marathon runner. The movie wrapped up filming in August 2011, and is targeted for release on the last quarter of 2011.

Summer of 2012 saw Kim as Jae-hyuk, a pharmaceutical agent in disaster movie Deranged. The movie revolves around Jae-hyuk's struggle to save his infected family from the outbreak of mutated horsehair worms that has wreaked havoc in South Korea. On the release day, the movie took the number one spot over Hollywood film The Amazing Spider Man at number two, with 149,170 tickets.[22][23][24] The highly successful movie directed by Park Jung-woo became the fastest Korean film in 2012 to reach 2 million admissions, eight days after its July 5 release date,[25] and topped the boxoffice for three consecutive weeks.[26] The movie was also screened in selected theaters in North America ,[27] got an extended screening [28] thereafter, and was also invited to Spain's prestigious Sitges Film Festival in October 2012.[29]

In early February 2012, Kim signed the contract to star in the movie The Spies, his second collaboration with Woo Min-ho, director of his 2010 film, Man of Vendetta.[30] The movie tells about Agent Kim and his three North Korean comrades who are working undercover in South Korea.[31][32] The movie was released locally on 20 September.

Kim made a comeback to the small screen after four years in The King of Dramas.[33][34][35]



Television series[edit]

Music videos[edit]

  • "Landscape" (Lee Jung-bong, 2001)
  • "Blue" (Lee Kyung-sub, 1999)


  • Kim Myung-min Classics Maestro (2009)



Year CF
  • LIG Insurance "Magic Car", "LIG You"
  • Cheonjiyang Ginseng Steamed Red "Guitar"
  • SKtelink "00700" (International call service) "Prince", "Department Store Sale"
  • Oral-B "OQ campaign" (OQ=Oral care Quotient) and Cross Action Toothbrush
  • LIG Construction "Liga"
  • LIG Insurance "I'm A Woman", "I'm A Kid"
  • Cheonjiyang Ginseng Steamed Red "Hypnotist"
  • SKtelink "00700" (International call service)
  • Oral-B "OQ campaign" (OQ=Oral care Quotient) and Cross Action Toothbrush
  • Lancôme
  • LIG Insurance (The 50th Commemoration of the Founding "Hope Symphony")
  • Orion, "Dr. You"
  • LIG Insurance (Eps. Husband, Wife, Kid)
  • ShinChang Construction "Viva Family" (Eps.: Swimming Pool, Ice-Rink)
  • National Election Commission, "Clean Election" and "Policy Election"
  • Oral-B, "Triumph"
  • National Pension Service
  • Kia Motors, "Lotze"
  • Hankuk Yakult, "Kuppers"
  • ShinChang Construction, "Viva Family"
  • LIG Insurance (Eps.: Zoo, Happiness Every day)
  • National Pension Service
  • LIG Insurance (Eps.: Launching)
  • NamYang Construction, "NamYang HuTon"
  • Credit Counseling and Recovery Service
  • LG Insurance (Eps.: Family, L-Flower)
  • LG Insurance (Eps.: Birth, Court)
  • LG Electronics, "CU"
  • Doosan, "Chung-ha"
  • Korea Electronic Power Corporation (KEPCO)
  • SK Pharma Co., "Trast"

Publicity ambassador[edit]

  • 2010 Seoul National University Bundang Hospital Goodwill Ambassador
  • 2009 Korea Dental Association, "Ambassador for Oral Hygiene"
  • 2008 Kia Soul CUV
  • 2007 Oral Health Care Campaign, "OQ Publicity Ambassador"
  • 2007 National Election Commission, "Clean Election Publicity Ambassador"
  • 2007 Yeon-se Severance Health Publicity Ambassador
  • 2006 National Pension Service
  • 2005 Social Welfare Society
  • 2005 The Great Admiral Lee Soon-shin Festival


Year Awards


  1. ^ Hancinema: Intensity and sense of purpose create the materials for a star last retrieved: 7. December 2008
  2. ^ Hancinema: Kim Myeong-min Still Haunted by 'White Tower' Role last retrieved: 7. December 2008
  3. ^ Cineline: Cineline profile of Kim Myung Min last retrieved: 16 April 2000
  4. ^ Cine21: 그가 그린 마음의 지옥도, <소름>의 김명민 last retrieved: 16 April 2000
  5. ^ Mydaily: 김명민 대상의 원동력과 값진 의미? last retrieved: 16 April 2000
  6. ^ Cine21: 그가 그린 마음의 지옥도, <소름>의 김명민 last retrieved: 16 April 2000
  7. ^ MYdaily: 김명민,왜 2008 최고스타가 됐을까? last retrieved: 16 April 2009
  8. ^ MYdaily: 김명민 대상의 원동력과 값진 의미? last retrieved: 16 April 2009
  9. ^ Hancinema: "Immortal Admiral Yi Sun-shin" Gains Popularity in China last retrieved: 7. December 2008
  10. ^ Cine21: 아쉬움 여전한 지상파 3사 ‘2005 연기대상 시상식’ last retrieved: 16 April 2009
  11. ^ Mydaily: 김명민 대상의 원동력과 값진 의미? last retrieved: 16 April 2009
  12. ^ Hancinema: Kang "Mae Syndrome" Sweeps Marketing last retrieved: 7. December 2008
  13. ^ Korean Times: Kim Myung-min Replaces Kwon Sang-woo in Film last retrieved: 12. December 2008
  14. ^ Isplus: 김명민, 영화 ‘내사랑 내곁에’ 주인공으로 발탁 last retrieved: 12. December 2008
  15. ^ goNews: 김명민, 권상우 대신 ‘내사랑 내곁에’ 캐스팅 last retrieved: 12. December 2008
  16. ^ MyungMin International. ""Kim Myung Min's First Major Film Award". MyungMin International, 11 November 2009. Retrieved on 11 September 2010.
  17. ^ Park, Sun-young. "‘Closer to Heaven’ actors win Blue Dragon awards". JoongAng, 4 December 2009. Retrieved on 11 November 2009.
  18. ^ Kim, Lynn. ""Heaven" tops box office for third week"., 12 October 2009. Retrieved on 11 November 2009.
  19. ^ michi. "Kim Myung Min takes the challenge of portraying a father character for the first time". MyungMin, 23 May 2010. Retrieved on 11 September 2010.
  20. ^ hsinya. "18+ Movies create box-office success at the theaters". MyungMin, 16 August 2010. Retrieved on 11 September 2010.
  21. ^ michi. "Kim Myung Min as the Korean Sherlock Holmes?". MyungMin, 9 June 2010. Retrieved on 11 November 2009.
  22. ^ Oh, MiJung; Erika Kim (translation) (6 July 2012). "Deranged Tops Box Office on Day of Premiere". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 6 July 2012. 
  23. ^ Michelle. "Kim Myeong-min is cast in disaster movie "Yeongasi"". Hancinema, 1 February 2011. Retrieved on 9 September 2011.
  24. ^ SBS News "김명민, '연가시'로 컴백…7월5일 개봉"
  25. ^ KoreanFilm. "<Deranged> fastest to 2 million admissions in 2012". KoreanFilm, 18 July 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  26. ^ Lucia Hong. ""Deranged" continues to perch atop the box office". 10Asia, 16 July 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  27. ^ chloejn . "‘Deranged’ opening in select theaters in North America". Allkpop, 16 July 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  28. ^ Michelle. "Kim Myung Min’s “Deranged” extends screening in North America". Kim Myung Min International, 31 July 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  29. ^ Michelle. "“Deranged” invited to Spain’s Sitges Film Festival. Kim Myung Min International, 3 August 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  30. ^ Michelle. "Kim Myung Min becomes a spy in new movie by “Man of Vendetta” director. Kim Myung Min International, 22 February 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  31. ^ koguma "Kim Myung Min's New Movie is called 'Kancheop'(간첩)"
  32. ^ Michelle. "Casting announced for Kim Myung Min’s “SPY”. Kim Myung Min International, 11 April 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  33. ^ Michelle. "Kim Myung Min confirmed to return to TV in “The King of Dramas”. Kim Myung Min International, 24 July 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  34. ^ Lee Hye. "Kim Myung-min to turn into TV series producer in new comedy. 10Asia, 25 July 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.
  35. ^ Michelle. "“The King of Dramas” finally gets a shooting date. Kim Myung Min International, 12 September 2012. Retrieved on 23 September 2012.

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