Kim Sung-min (actor)

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Kim Sung-min
Kim Sung-Min from acrofan.jpg
Native name
Kim Sung-taek

(1973-02-14)February 14, 1973
DiedJune 26, 2016(2016-06-26) (aged 43)
Seoul, South Korea
Cause of deathSuicide by hanging
EducationSeoul National University
Seoul College - Physical and Social Education in Golf
Years active1995–2014
AgentLobe Entertainment
Spouse(s)Lee Han-na (m. 2013 - 2016)
Korean name
Revised RomanizationGim Seong-min
McCune–ReischauerKim Sŏng-min
Birth name
Revised RomanizationGim Seong-taek
McCune–ReischauerKim Sŏng-taek

Kim Sung-min (Korean: 김성민, February 14, 1973 – June 26, 2016) was a South Korean actor.


Kim made his acting debut in 1995, as a member of the theatre troupe Constellation (Korean성좌). In 2002, he rose to stardom in the hit television drama Miss Mermaid. Miss Mermaid screenwriter Im Sung-han cast him again in her next drama, Lotus Flower Fairy (also known as Heaven's Fate, 2004).[1] But when Miss Mermaid was exported to Taiwan and the Philippines, foreign viewers had difficulty pronouncing his given name "Sung-taek," so to further build his Korean Wave profile, Kim adopted the stage name Kim Sung-min in 2005.[2] He then starred in leading roles in Single Again and Tears of Diamond.

Comic supporting roles followed in Couple or Trouble (2006) where he played a selfish yet hapless husband to an heiress, and Family's Honor (2008) where he played a playboy twin brother who has an unlikely romance with a tomboyish policewoman.[3][4] Then Kim surprised audiences by portraying a darker character, an adulterous husband in What's for Dinner? (2009),[5] followed by his first period drama, The Reputable Family (2010). He also appeared in the popular variety-reality show Qualifications of Men, and during its run was selected as a guest by the United States Air Force Thunderbirds on their 2009 Far East Tour at Osan Air Base.

On December 4, 2010, Kim was arrested in a drug scandal which also implicated other celebrities.[6][7] During police questioning, he admitted to habitually using methamphetamine and marijuana, and smuggling the former substance into Korea.[8][9][10][11][12] On January 24, 2011, the Seoul High Court sentenced him to four years in prison; upon Kim's appeal, the jail term was reduced to 30 months suspended for four years, along with two years of probation, 120 hours of community service, 40 hours of substance abuse education, and a ₩904,500 fine.[13][14][15] Kim was released from a prison in Uiwang, Gyeonggi Province on March 25, 2011.[16] Because of this, he was dropped from Qualifications of Men and went on a hiatus.[8][10]

After laying low for two years, Kim made his acting comeback in Can We Get Married? in 2012.[17] Due to the conservatism of Korean network television, he has so far appeared solely in cable dramas, including Can't Take It Anymore (2013),[18] and The Three Musketeers (2014) for which he trained in martial arts, horseback riding and the Manchu language for his role as a Qing Dynasty general.[19]

On March 11, 2015, Kim was again arrested for purchasing and ingesting methamphetamine. He allegedly bought 0.8 grams on November 24, 2014 from a dealer who had smuggled the drug from Cambodia. During police questioning, Kim claimed that he only used the drug once, and that his relapse had been caused by troubles in his marriage and a slump in his acting career.[20][21] For illegal drug use and violating his probation, Kim was sentenced to 10 months in prison and a ₩700,000 (US$590) fine.[22][23]

Personal life[edit]

Kim married dentist Lee Han-na on February 20, 2013. Lee is the head of a Gangnam dental clinic and has frequently appeared on television to give dental health advice.[24]


On 24 June 2016, Kim Sung Min's wife called police to check on her husband, saying that he had threatened to kill himself following an argument.[25] Police found him attempting to commit suicide by hanging in the bathroom.[26] On 26 June, the police stated Kim Sung Min, who had been in a coma since 24 June, was diagnosed as brain dead at 2AM KST.[27] The diagnosis was confirmed at 10:15 AM KST, and Kim Sung Min's family agreed to donate his organs. The police will have to sign off on the organ donation and a transplant could occur in the afternoon.[28][29]


Television series[edit]

Year Title Role Network
1998 Hometown of Legends "Wailing Myo" KBS2
1999 Beautiful Choice MBC
2002 Miss Mermaid Lee Joo-wang MBC
2003 Women Next Door Jung-woo MBC
2004 Lotus Flower Fairy Kim Moo-bin MBC
2005 Single Again Lee Min-ho SBS
Tears of Diamond Choi Hyung-min SBS
2006 Couple or Trouble Billy Park MBC
2008 Before and After: Plastic Surgery Clinic Choi Yong-woo MBC
On Air Manager (cameo, episode 21) SBS
Family's Honor Ha Tae-young SBS
2009 Queen of Housewives Heo Tae-joon's friend
(cameo, episode 16)
What's for Dinner? Jung Sun-woo MBC
2010 The Reputable Family Kim Won-il KBS1
Coffee House Airline passenger (cameo) SBS
2012 Can We Get Married? Do-hyun jTBC
2013 Can't Take It Anymore Hwang Kang-ho jTBC
2014 Can We Fall in Love, Again? Kim Young-ho (cameo, episode 10) jTBC
The Three Musketeers Ingguldai tvN


Year Title Role
2006 Time[30] Plastic surgeon
2007 The Mafia, the Salesman Kim Sang-doo
2009 I'm Happy Hyung-chul
2011 Invasion of Alien Bikini Director (cameo)
2013 Closet (short film)
Eating, Talking, Faucking Bill
The Weight (cameo)

Variety show[edit]

Year Title Network Notes
2008 SBS Golf: Prism Lessons SBS Host
2009-2010 Qualifications of Men KBS2 Cast member


Year Title Role
2010 Jack the Ripper Daniel
Black Comedy
2012 The Sound of Music
2012-2013 Bedroom Farce Malcolm
2013 Black Comedy Georg Bamberger

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2002 MBC Drama Awards Best New Actor Miss Mermaid Won
Best Couple Award with Jang Seo-hee Won
2004 MBC Drama Awards Excellence Award, Actor Lotus Flower Fairy Won
2009 SBS Drama Awards Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Special Family's Honor Nominated
KBS Entertainment Awards Top Entertainer Award Qualifications of Men Won
2010 5th Asia Model Festival Awards Model Star Award N/A Won


  1. ^ Lee, Jin-yeong (4 May 2004). "Kim Sung-tak to Play Lead In MBC's Fairy of the Flower King". The Dong-a Ilbo. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  2. ^ "이름은 브랜드..." 연기자들 개명 바람. Kyunghyang Shinmun (in Korean). 19 May 2005. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  3. ^ "HanCinema's Drama Review: Fantastic Couple". Hancinema. 15 November 2013. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  4. ^ Oh, Jean (9 October 2008). "Are family dramas' glory days over?". The Korea Herald via Hancinema. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  5. ^ "Male Actors Try New Roles in TV Dramas". KBS Global. 2 July 2009. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  6. ^ "10 more entertainers involved in drug use". The Korea Times. 8 December 2010. Archived from the original on 5 December 2014. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  7. ^ "Kim Sung-min Implicates Others in Drug Scandal". The Chosun Ilbo. 9 December 2010. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  8. ^ a b Kwon, Mee-yoo (5 December 2010). "Actor caught for methamphetamine use". The Korea Times. Archived from the original on 5 December 2014. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  9. ^ "Celebrities Nabbed for Drug Use". The Chosun Ilbo. 6 December 2010. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  10. ^ a b Kim, Jessica (6 December 2010). "Actor Kim Sung-min arrested on meth charges". 10Asia. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  11. ^ Ko, Kyoung-seok (22 December 2010). "Actor Kim Sung-min charged with using drugs". 10Asia. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  12. ^ "Actor Kim Sung-min suffered depression for 2 years". The Korea Times. 10 December 2010. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  13. ^ "Actor gets 4 years for drug use". Korea JoongAng Daily. 18 January 2011. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  14. ^ "Actor Gets 30 Months in Jail for Drugs". The Chosun Ilbo. 25 January 2011. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  15. ^ Lee, Jong-gil (25 March 2011). "Kim Sung-min handed suspended jail term for drug use". 10Asia. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  16. ^ Kim, Rahn (25 March 2011). "Actor Kim gets suspended jail term". The Korea Times. Archived from the original on 5 December 2014. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  17. ^ Oh, Jean (12 September 2012). "Kim Seong-min to come back for the first time in 2 years". Hancinema. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  18. ^ "Kim Seong-min to star in JTBC Can't Take It Anymore". Hancinema. 26 June 2013. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  19. ^ "Kim Seong-min in tvN The Three Musketeers". Hancinema. 25 June 2014. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  20. ^ "Actor Kim Sung-min detained over drug". The Korea Times. 11 March 2015. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 2015-03-27.
  21. ^ "Actor Kim Sung-min Held on Drugs Charges Again". The Chosun Ilbo. 12 March 2015. Retrieved 2015-03-27.
  22. ^ Jin, Min-ji (2 May 2015). "Kim Sung-min sentenced". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2015-05-04.
  23. ^ Jin, Min-ji (3 September 2015). "Prison sentence for Kim Sung-min". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2015-09-16.
  24. ^ "Kim Sung-min, 39, marries his dentist". Korea JoongAng Daily. 25 February 2013. Retrieved 2014-12-01.
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^ "South Korean actor Kim Sung-min brain dead after suicide attempt". Channel News Asia. June 27, 2016. Retrieved September 30, 2018.
  28. ^ "Brain-dead actor Kim Sung-min's organs to be donated". Korea Times. 2016-06-26. Archived from the original on 2016-06-26. Retrieved 2016-06-26.
  29. ^
  30. ^ Joo, Jung-wan (29 August 2006). "On celluloid, plastic is murder". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-12-01.

External links[edit]