Rick Yune

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Rick Yune
Richard Yun

(1971-08-22) August 22, 1971 (age 52)
EducationUniversity of Pennsylvania (BS)
Years active1998–present
RelativesKarl Yune (brother)

Rick Yune (born August 22, 1971)[1] is an American actor, screenwriter, producer and martial artist of Korean descent. His most notable roles have been in the movies Snow Falling on Cedars, the first Fast and Furious film The Fast and the Furious, the James Bond movie Die Another Day, and Olympus Has Fallen. He was part of the main cast of the Netflix original series Marco Polo.

Early life[edit]

Yune was born in Washington D.C. to mother Park Wonhui and father Yun Taeho,[2] who were both Korean.[2][3] His younger brother is actor Karl Yune.[4]

Yune was educated at Our Lady of Good Counsel High School (Olney, Maryland) and St. John's College High School. In 1994, he received his degree in finance from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School.[5] Yune was one of the original hedge fund traders for SAC Capital but left to pursue entrepreneurial ventures.[5][6]

Yune practices many forms of martial arts,[6][7] but the two main martial arts in which he excels are Taekwondo (he is an Olympic-level Taekwondo black belt) and Boxing (he is a former Golden Gloves boxer).[8] He changed the spelling of his last name from "Yun" to "Yune" for Screen Actors Guild (SAG) purposes.[6]


While studying at Wharton, Rick Yune worked as an intern on Wall Street trading stocks during the mid-1992. During that time, he was "discovered" by a modeling agent and soon became the first Asian-American featured in advertisements for Versace and Ralph Lauren's Polo.[5][6][9]

Yune made his film debut in 1999, playing Kazuo Miyamoto, a Japanese-American war hero accused of killing a respected fisherman (played by Daniel von Bargen) in the close-knit community, in director Scott Hicks' film adaptation of David Guterson's post-World War II novel, Snow Falling on Cedars.[5][6][9]

Yune co-starred as Johnny Tran, a Vietnamese gang leader and the rival of Vin Diesel's character, in the 2001 film The Fast and the Furious.

In 2002 Yune portrayed Zao, a North Korean terrorist who works for the Korean People's Army, opposite Pierce Brosnan and Halle Berry, in the James Bond film Die Another Day.[10] That year Yune was voted one of People magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive".[11]

Yune appeared in the 2004 video "Call U Sexy" by the band VS, as well as in Someone (1997) by SWV, featuring Sean "Puffy" Combs.

Yune appeared in two 2005 episodes of ABC's spy series Alias, playing a modern-day samurai Kazu Tamazaki who is hunted down by Jennifer Garner as Sydney. He also appeared as a guest in an episode of ABC's legal dramedy series Boston Legal and the CBS crime drama CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

He produced, and starred as a Thai assassin in, the action/adventure movie The Fifth Commandment, directed by Jesse V. Johnson and also stars Keith David and Bokeem Woodbine.

Yune starred with Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu in the 2012 martial arts film, The Man with the Iron Fists.[12][13]

In 2013 Yune played Kang Yeonsak, a North Korean ultra-nationalist and ex-terrorist mastermind who plans a terrorist attack on the White House, in the action thriller Olympus Has Fallen, opposite Gerard Butler.[14]

In 2014, Yune took on the role of Kaidu, a Mongol Khan, in the historical drama series Marco Polo. Yune reprised his role in the second season, which was released in 2016.

Other work[edit]

Yune is a board member of the Center for Global Dialogue and Cooperation[15] and an Ambassador for the Princess Charlene foundation of Monaco.[16]


List of film credits
Year Title Role Notes
1998 Nathan Grimm Extra
1999 Snow Falling on Cedars Kazuo Miyamoto
2001 The Fast and the Furious Johnny Tran
The Fence "Lucky" Chang
2002 Die Another Day Tang Ling Zao
2008 The Fifth Commandment Chance Templeton Also producer and writer
Alone in the Dark II Edward Carnby Also associate producer
2009 Beyond Remedy Dr. Lee
Ninja Assassin Takeshi
2011 Remigration Jonathan Park
China-Town Man
2012 The Man with the Iron Fists Zen Yi
2013 Olympus Has Fallen Kang Yeonsak
2019 Alita: Battle Angel Master Clive Lee
2020 Jiu Jitsu Captain Sand
2023 Tetris Eddie
List of television credits
Year Title Role Notes
1997 Another World (TV series) Assistant District Attorney 1 Epidode
2000 Any Day Now Tuan 1 episode
2001 The Division 1 episode
2005 Alias Kazu Tamazaki 2 episodes
Boston Legal Troi Ran 1 episode
2006 CSI Robert Hsing 1 episode
2013 Hawaii Five-O Han Ji-Woon 1 episode
2014–2016 Marco Polo Kaidu Main role
2017 Prison Break Ja Recurring role
2023 Wu-Tang: An American Saga Cyrus 1 episode


  1. ^ "Celebrity birthdays for the week of Aug. 22–28". The Independent. August 16, 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Rick Yune". BiJog. June 8, 2016.
  3. ^ "Coming Star, Rick Yune – The Chosun Ilbo (English Edition): Daily News from Korea – art&ent". English.chosun.com. January 24, 1999. Retrieved December 29, 2016.
  4. ^ "'Anacondas: The Hunt For The Blood Orchid' Los Angeles Screening – Red Carpet".
  5. ^ a b c d "Rick Yune – In The Media". Rick Yune. Archived from the original on December 17, 2005. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Rick Yune – In The Media". Rick Yune. Archived from the original on December 17, 2005. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  7. ^ Lesley Jackson. "Rick Yune Interview". Martialedge.net. Archived from the original on March 3, 2009. Retrieved January 27, 2010. Archived 2009-03-03 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "Rick Yune: Martial Artist, Actor, Screenwriter, Producer". Martial Arts Entertainment. December 1, 2014. Retrieved January 14, 2023.
  9. ^ a b "Rick Yune – In The Media". Rick Yune. Archived from the original on February 9, 2006. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  10. ^ Patton, Phil (November 10, 2002). "The Spy Who Drove Me". The New York Times.
  11. ^ "Sexiest Pop Sensation – Sexiest Man Alive, Enrique Iglesias". People.com. December 2, 2002. Archived from the original on January 9, 2011. Retrieved September 19, 2010.
  12. ^ "The Man With The Iron Fists: Rick Yune On His Character". The New York Times. May 6, 2001.
  13. ^ "Rick Yune Stars With Russell Crowe in Eli Roth's 'Man With an Iron Fists". thewrap.com. March 22, 2011. Retrieved March 22, 2011.
  14. ^ Kit, Borys (July 10, 2012). "Melissa Leo and Rick Yune Joining 'Olympus Has Fallen'". The Hollywood Reporter.
  15. ^ "CGDC: International Board". Archived from the original on December 14, 2018. Retrieved December 11, 2018.
  16. ^ "PCMFUSA: Ambassadors & advisors".

External links[edit]