Lee Min-ho (actor, born 1987)

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For an actor of the same name, see Lee Min-ho (actor born 1993).
This is a Korean name; the family name is Lee.
Lee Min-ho
140120 Minho Lee c.jpg
Born Lee Min-ho
(1987-06-22) June 22, 1987 (age 28)
Seoul, South Korea
Nationality South Korean
Education B.A. Film & Arts
Alma mater Konkuk University
Occupation Actor, Singer, Model
Years active 2003-present
Agent Starhaus Entertainment (Korea)
IMX Inc. (Japan)
Huayi Brothers (China)
Notable work Boys Over Flowers (2009)
Personal Taste (2010)
City Hunter (2011)
Faith (2012)
The Heirs (2013)
Gangnam Blues (2015)
Height 1.87 m (6 ft 1 12 in)[1]
Weight 68 kg (150 lb)
Awards 35
Website www.leeminho.kr
Korean name
Hangul 이민호
Hanja
Revised Romanization I Minho
McCune–Reischauer Yi Min-ho

Lee Min-ho (Hangul: 이민호; hanja: 李敏鎬, born June 22, 1987) is a South Korean actor, singer and model.

Lee first gained widespread fame with Boys Over Flowers as Gu Jun-pyo in 2009. The role won him several awards, including the Best New Actor award in the category of television at the 45th Baeksang Arts Awards. He cemented his status as the leading-man with the success of future television shows: City Hunter (2011) — in which he was nominated for Most Popular Actor in the category of television at the 48th Baeksang Arts Awards as well as Outstanding Korean Actor at the 7th Seoul International Drama Awards — and The Heirs (2013), which garnered him another nomination for Most Popular Actor at the 50th Baeksang Arts Awards. The box office hit Gangnam Blues featured Lee in his first leading role in a film.

Despite the release of two albums, My Everything (2013) and Song For You (2014), Lee has stated that his music are for his fans only and that he does not wish to pursue a singing career. During their respective releases, he embarked on a tour throughout Asia to meet his fans.

Life and career[edit]

Early life and career[edit]

Lee Min Ho was born in Heukseok-dong, Dongjak-gu, Seoul. As a child, Lee had hoped to become a professional football player. He was selected for the youth football class of South Korean manager and former player Cha Bum-Kun, but an injury in the 5th grade of elementary school put an end to his dream.[2] Lee, however, still keeps up with football and has stated that Cristiano Ronaldo is his favourite player.[3] In his second year of high school, Lee turned to modelling and acting. After going through training, Lee started auditioning and landed minor roles in several television dramas such as Nonstop 5 and Recipe of Love. His official debut role was in an EBS series, Secret Campus.[4] Early in his career Lee went by the stage name Lee Min because his agency thought his birth name was too ordinary. However, as his stage name was pronounced and written (Hangul) in the same way as the Korean word imin, which means "immigration", it made it hard for him to show up on internet search results. He eventually went back to using his original name.[5]

In 2006, his acting career was put on hold for a year following a serious car accident in which he was severely injured and spent several months bedridden.[2] Upon recovery, Lee received his first leading role in the high-school drama Mackerel Run in 2007, but the series was reduced to only eight episodes due to low viewership ratings.[6] In 2008 he appeared in various roles on television (dramas Get Up and I Am Sam) and two movies, Public Enemy Returns and Our School's E.T.. During the shooting of the latter he became good friends with Kim Su-ro, who later praised him on a variety show: "I recognize a star when I see one. When I was doing Our School's E.T., I knew that Lee Min-ho would become one of the top actors in the country".[7]

Breakthrough: 2009–2012[edit]

His breakthrough came in 2009 with the lead role of Gu Jun-pyo in Boys Over Flowers (KBS2) opposite Ku Hye Sun ,the Korean adaptation of the popular Japanese television drama Hana Yori Dango, which was based on the popular Shōjo manga, Boys Over Flowers (花より男子 Hana Yori Dango). Competition for the leading role was very intense and Lee only got to know he was cast from the newspapers.[8] The series made Lee a household name in South Korea,[9] and was well-received throughout Asia.[10]

In 2010 Lee followed up the success of Boys Over Flowers by starring in the MBC TV drama Personal Taste in which he played an ambitious perfectionist young architect who poses as a gay man to become roommates with a young woman leading to romantic complications. When asked about why he chose the role during an interview he responded "I think I would do a better job playing heavy and more defined roles when I am older. I think "Personal Taste" was perfect because it is bright, cheerful but you can also laugh and cry over it as well."[11]

In 2011, he played the titular character in action drama City Hunter, which was loosely based on Tsukasa Hojo's popular manga. The drama's popularity throughout Asia has also contributed to Lee's growing popularity in Asia, most notably in Japan, Philippines and China[12][13] and as well in parts of Europe.[14] He participated in a popular Chinese variety show Happy Camp in December 2011, drawing a large number of fans to the recording.[15] On April 6, 2012, Lee announced on his Facebook page that he would appear in a new drama called Faith (Hangul: 신의, Rom.: Shinui), which aired from August to October 2012.

Musical releases and continued success: 2013–present[edit]

Lee released his first album in May 2013 and went on a fan meeting tour in Asia in cities such as Yokohama, Osaka, Shanghai, Beijing, Kuala Lumpur, Manila and Taipei.[16][17] In April 2013 his wax figure was unveiled at the Madame Tussauds in Shanghai.[18]

On March 29, 2013, Lee revealed that he will be returning to the small screen with a new drama titled The Heirs (also known as The Inheritors).[19] This show began airing in Korea on SBS on October 9, 2013. His new project gained a lot of attention because the scriptwriter was known for producing hit dramas such as Secret Garden and Lovers in Paris.[20] On why he decided to take on the role of a chaebol heir in high school four years after playing one in Boys Over Flowers, his answer was, "Before I grew past my 20s, I wanted to play a more upbeat character, one that would allow me to return to that feeling of simple, uncomplicated innocence that I had when I was younger".[21]

On Jan 30, 2014, Lee became the first Korean celebrity to perform on China's CCTV Lunar New Year gala. The annual show, which is televised on free-to-air channels across China and streamed online, is known to reach 800 million Chinese viewers across the world.[22] He sang a song with Harlem Yu, the original singer of the theme song of Meteor Garden, the Taiwanese version of Boys Over Flowers.[23] Lee's appearance on the show garnered great attention, since performing on the Lunar New Year gala is regarded as an honour among Chinese artistes.[24][25] The appearance has since increased his popularity in China, where he has been nicknamed 'long-legged oppa' in both mainstream and social media.[26][27] Lee was also invited to the third conference of the South Korean Presidential Committee for Cultural Enrichment as the representative for the entertainment industry, to share and contribute to the discussion of issues related to developing Korea’s cultural content.[28][29]

Lee's next project is director Yoo Ha's noir action film Gangnam Blues, which is set in the 1970s when the real estate development boom swept across Gangnam. The movie, which co-stars Kim Rae-won, marks Lee's first leading role in a feature film.[30][31][32] Lee chose the project as he wanted to portray a more manly character to prove his versatility as an actor.[33] Shortly after filming wrapped in August 2014, Lee took to social media and posted a fan-made teaser poster of the movie.[34] He subsequently recorded and released his second EP Song for You in October 2014 under Universal Music. As with his previous album, he stated that the tracks were recorded for his fans and that he had no ambition to pursue a singing career.[35][36] The album release coincided with the start of his RE:MINHO fan meeting tour in Asian cities such as Beijing, Tokyo, Guangzhou, Nanjing, Bangkok, Shanghai and Seoul.[37][38][39]

Lee's next project will be global project 'Bounty Hunters'. It starts filming in August 2015 and to be released in 2016. It will be an action comedy to be directed by Director Shin Terra. It will be one of the most expensive movie with tentative budget of $16 million. More recent data put the budget at $31 million.[40] Lee will co-star Wallace Chung and Yang Mi.

Personal life[edit]

Lee has an older sister.[5][41] He is majoring in Film & Art at Konkuk University.[2]

In August 2011, a local news reported that he was dating actress Park Min-young. In early 2012, however, the two parted ways.[42][43]

In March 2015, Lee and South Korean singer and actress Suzy of Miss A were confirmed to be in a relationship.[44]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Original Title Role Distributor
2008 Public Enemy Returns 강철중: 공공의 적 1-1 Jung Ha-yeon CJ Entertainment
Our School's E.T. 울학교 이티 Oh Sang-hoon Finecut
2015 Gangnam Blues 강남 1970 Kim Jong-dae Showbox
2016 Bounty Hunters Yi San

Television drama[edit]

Year Title Original Title Role Network
2003 Sharp 성장드라마 반올림 Student KBS2
2004 Nonstop 5 논스톱 5 MC Mong MBC
2005 Recipe of Love 사랑찬가 Waiter
2006 Secret Campus 비밀의 교정 Park Du-hyun EBS
2007 Mackerel Run 달려라 고등어 Cha Gong-chan SBS
I Am Sam (I Am Your Teacher) 아이엠샘 Heo Mo-se KBS2
2008 Get Up 나도 잘 모르지만 Min Wook-gi MBC
2009 Boys Over Flowers 꽃보다 남자 Gu Jun-pyo KBS2
2010 Personal Taste 개인의 취향 Jeon Jin-ho MBC
2011 City Hunter 시티헌터 Lee Yoon-sung SBS
2012 Faith (The Great Doctor) 신의 (神医) Choi Young
2013 The Heirs (The Inheritors) 왕관을 쓰려는 자, 그 무게를 견뎌라 – 상속자들 Kim Tan

DVD[edit]

Year Title Details Tracklisting
2010 Minoz Japan First Event[45][46][47]
  • Release Date: March 20, 2010 (Japan)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 142 min.
2011 Lee Min Ho 2009-2010 DVD[48][49][50]
  • Release Date: February 2, 2011 (Japan)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 200 min.
2012 Minoz Japan 2nd Event[51][52][53]
  • Release Date: March 14, 2012 (Japan)
  • Format: 1DVD
  • Length: 99 min.
2013 2012 MJ 3rd Event
-Lee Min Ho With Winter Symphony-
[54][55][56]
  • Release Date: May 15, 2013 (Japan)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 131 min.
2013 Lee Min Ho - 2013 Global Tour 'My Everything' in Seoul[57]
  • Release Date: Sep 9, 2013 (Korea)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 118 min.
2013 Lee Min Ho 2013 Global Tour in Japan - My Everything[58][59]
  • Release Date: Oct 16, 2013 (Japan)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 135 min.
2014 Lee Min Ho - All My Life[60][61]
  • Release Date: Apr 22, 2014 (Korea)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 183 min.
2014 Lee Min Ho - Encore Concert 2014 My Everything In Japan[62]
  • Release Date: Aug 8, 2014 (Korea)
  • Format: 2DVD
  • Length: 147 min.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Album Title Details Tracklisting
2013 My Everything
Korea[63][64]
  • Released: May 22, 2013 (Online Release) : May 24, 2013 (CD Release)
  • Label/Distributor: LOEN Entertainment
  • Format: CD+DVD+photobook(+poster)
  • Language: Korean
Japan
  • Limited Editions[65][66][67]
    • Released: May 27, 2013
    • Label/Distributor: IMX Inc.
    • Format: CD+DVD (Jacket A), CD+photobook (Jacket B)
    • Language: Japanese
  • Regular Edition[68][69][70]
2014 Song for You
Korea[71][72]
  • Released: Oct 10, 2014 (Online Release) : Oct 11, 2014 (CD Release)
  • Label/Distributor: Universal Music (South Korea)
  • Format: CD+DVD+Photo cards
  • Language: Korean
Japan
  • Limited Edition[73]
    • Released: Oct 10, 2014
    • Label/Distributor: Universal Music Japan
    • Format: CD+Photo Cards+Polaroid+Draw to Meet Artiste (Type I), CD+DVD+Photo Cards (Type II)
    • Language: Japanese
  • Regular Edition[74]

Singles/Soundtrack contributions[edit]

Year Title / Track Album Notes Ref.
2009 "My Everything" Boys Over Flowers OST (F4 Special Edition) [75]
2013 "Painful Love" The Heirs OST composed by Hwang Chan Hee, lyrics are written by Kang Yi Deun
2015 "Thank You" Thank You lyrics by Lee Min-ho, written by composer and producer Hwang Chan-hee

Promotional songs[edit]

Year Song Title Artist Product Notes Ref.
2009 "Extreme" with Jessica Gomes Cass 2X Beer
"Kiss" Sandara Park
2014 "You're so Beautiful" Himself with Park Shin Hye, EXO, Super Junior Etc. Lotte Duty Free

Songs performed at fan meetings[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2009
45th Baeksang Arts Awards
Best New Actor (TV) Boys Over Flowers Won
Most Popular Actor (TV) Nominated
MTN Broadcast Advertisement Festival
Most Popular Advertisement Model Trugen Commercial Won
14th Asian Television Award
Best Drama Actor Boys Over Flowers Nominated
3rd Mnet 20's Choice Awards
Hot Male Drama Star[76] Nominated
Hot CF Star Dunkin' Donuts Nominated
Hot New Star N/A Nominated
Hot Summer Heat Popularity Award N/A Nominated
Hot Character ("Gu Jun-pyo") Boys Over Flowers Nominated
4th Seoul International Drama Awards
People's Choice Actor Nominated
2nd Style Icon Awards
Viewers' Best Popularity Icon N/A Nominated
Yahoo! Asia Buzz Awards
Top Buzz Star: Male Category N/A Nominated
ASAP Pop Viewers' Choice Awards
POP Kapamilya TV Character "(Gu Jun-pyo)" Boys Over Flowers Won
KBS Drama Awards
Best New Actor Won
Netizen Award, Actor Nominated
Best Couple Award with Ku Hye-sun Won
2010
4th Mnet 20's Choice Awards
Hot Actor Personal Taste Won
3rd Style Icon Awards
Popularity Award N/A Nominated
Yahoo! Asia Buzz Awards
Top Buzz Star: Male Actor N/A Nominated
Top Buzz Star: Male Category N/A Nominated
MBC Drama Awards
Excellence Award, Actor[77] Personal Taste Won
Popularity Award, Actor Nominated
Best Couple Award with Son Ye-jin Nominated
2011
4th Korea Drama Awards[78]
Top Excellence Award, Actor City Hunter Won
Hallyu Star Award Won
5th Mnet 20's Choice Awards
Hot Male Drama Star Nominated
Hot 20's Voice N/A Nominated
SBS Drama Awards[79]
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Drama Special City Hunter Won
Popularity Award, Actor Won
Top 10 Stars Won
Best Couple Award with Park Min-young[80] Nominated
2012
48th Baeksang Arts Awards
Most Popular Actor (TV) Nominated
7th Seoul International Drama Awards
Outstanding Korean Actor Nominated
People's Choice Actor Nominated
5th Style Icon Awards
Top 10 Style Icons[81] N/A Nominated
SBS Drama Awards
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries[82] Faith Won
Popularity Award, Actor[82] Nominated
Top 10 Stars[82] Won
2013
12th China Fashion Awards
Most Popular Asian Actor N/A Won
1st DramaFever Awards
Best Actor Faith Won
Best Couple with Kim Hee-sun Won
49th Baeksang Arts Awards
Most Popular Actor (TV) Nominated
8th Seoul International Drama Awards
People's Choice Actor Nominated
Sohu Media Awards
Most Popular International Actor N/A Won
Baidu Feidian Awards[83]
Best Asian Actor The Heirs Won
SBS Drama Awards[84]
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Drama Special Won
Popularity Award, Actor Won
Top 10 Stars Won
Best Couple Award with Park Shin-hye Won
Best Dressed Won
2014
2nd DramaFever Awards
Best Actor Won
Best Bromance with Kim Woo-bin Won
50th Baeksang Arts Awards
Most Popular Actor (TV) Nominated
Singapore Entertainment Awards
Most Popular Korean TV Artiste N/A Won
OMY Hot Star N/A Nominated
9th Seoul International Drama Awards
Outstanding Korean Actor The Heirs Nominated
People's Choice Actor Nominated
7th Korea Drama Awards
Grand Prize (Daesang) Nominated
7th Style Icon Awards
Top 10 Style Icons N/A Nominated
3rd APAN Star Awards
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries The Heirs Nominated
5th Korean Popular Culture & Arts Award
Prime Minister Award N/A Won
NATE Awards
People's Choice Hallyu Star N/A Nominated
2015
51st Baeksang Arts Awards
Best New Actor (Film) Gangnam Blues Nominated
Most Popular Actor (Film) Won
Most Popular Hallyu Star/IQiyi Star Award N/A Won
Korea SNS Industry Grand Award
President Award of National Information Society Agency N/A Won
19th Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival Awards
Producer Choice Award N/A Won

Others[edit]

Social contributions[edit]

  • Honorary Ambassador for UNICEF's Love Net campaign to fight malaria (2009-2010)
  • PR Ambassador for Konkuk University (2010)
  • Honorary Prosecutor or basically a PR ambassador for Korean Prosecutor (2012).
  • PR ambassador for the Chilean campaign "Reforestemos Patagonia" organized by Minoz Chile (2013)[85]

In 2014, Lee set up the PROMIZ website to raise awareness and encourage donation for social and humanitarian causes.[86][87] Proceeds from the sale of PROMIZ merchandise are given to the selected partners to execute the charity projects. The site has since raised US$50,000 from him and his fans to help dig wells in Malawi through non-profit organisation Charity: Water.[88][89]

Social media[edit]

Lee Min-ho has a considerable number of followers on social networks such as Facebook, Weibo and Twitter.[90][91][92][93] As such, he has noticeable internet presence on social media, fan forums and online polls.[94] In 2014 and 2015 (for two consecutive years), Lee Min-ho won an online poll organised by a Chinese entertainment magazine to crown the 'Asian Male God'.[95][96] The term 'Male God' subsequently stuck with him in Asia.[97]

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