Sol at the 2019 Berlin International Film Festival
|Education||Hanyang University - Theater and Film|
(m. 1996; div. 2006)
Song Yun-ah (m. 2009)
|Revised Romanization||Seol Gyeong-gu|
Sol was born in Seocheon on May 1, 1968, and studied Theater and Film at Hanyang University (Class of '86). Upon his graduation in 1994, he appeared in numerous theatrical productions, such as the hit Korean adaptation of the German rock musical Subway Line 1, and productions of Sam Shepard's True West and A. R. Gurney's Love Letters.
In the mid-1990s, Sol began taking on minor roles in feature films, but it was not until 1999 that he made his breakthrough, with major roles in The Bird That Stops in the Air, Rainbow Trout, and Peppermint Candy in which he played a suicidal man devastated by the two-decades of historical change his country undergoes. The film was acclaimed and brought Sol to win his first Best Actor award at the 2000 Blue Dragon Film Awards.
In 2002, Sol starred in three major films. As a violent and unscrupulous police detective in Public Enemy, he won Best Actor at the Grand Bell Awards and Blue Dragon Film Awards respectively. In August, he starred in Lee Chang-dong's acclaimed third film Oasis, which won the Silver Lion for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival. Sol's portrayal of mildly mentally disabled outcast with sociopathic inclinations won him Best Actor at the Chunsa Film Art Awards, Korean Association of Film Critics Awards, Korean Film Awards, Director's Cut Awards, and 29th Seattle International Film Festival. In November, he acted together with Cha Seung-won in a box office hit Jail Breakers by director Kim Sang-jin.
In 2003, Sol starred in Silmido directed by Cinema Service founder Kang Woo-suk, which became the first Korean film in history to gross 10 million admissions. His next role was as the title character in Rikidōzan, about the legendary ethnic Korean pro wrestler who became a national hero in Japan in the 1950s. Sol gained 20 kilograms for the role and also delivered 95% of his lines in Japanese. Although his performance was acclaimed, the film vastly underperformed on its local release.
In 2005, Sol starred in the sequel Another Public Enemy, which ended up outgrossing the original. This was followed by a second sequel, Public Enemy Returns in 2008. His other films Haeundae (2009), The Tower (2012) and Cold Eyes (2013) have also been box office hits. For his performance in Haeundae, he won Grand Prize at the 2009 Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards, followed by Best Actor award at the 18th Chunsa Film Art Awards for his performance in 2010 film No Mercy.
In 2013, Sol was cast in family drama Hope, directed by Lee Joon-ik, which won him Best Actor at the 50th Baeksang Arts Awards. The following year, Sol starred in My Dictator, as an aspiring actor who is forced to impersonate North Korean leader. For his performance in My Dictator, he won Best Actor at the 35th Golden Cinematography Awards.
In 2017, Sol returned to acting and starred opposite Im Si-wan in The Merciless. It was shown out of competition in the Midnight Screenings section at the 70th Cannes Film Festival on May 24, 2017. The film brought Sol to win Best Actor awards at the 54th Grand Bell Awards and 37th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards. He next starred in thriller film Memoir of a Murderer, as a retired serial killer with Alzheimer's disease. For his performance in Memoir of a Murderer, Sol received Best Actor awards at the 17th Director's Cut Awards in 2017 and the 9th Korea Film Reporters Association Film Awards (KOFRA) in 2018. The release of Sol's third film in 2017, I Want to Know Your Parents, has been postponed indefinitely following the scandal of actor Oh Dal-su.
Sol next starred in a 2019 film Idol opposite Han Suk-kyu and Chun Woo-hee, which opened in March. Despite the solid acting by three senior actors, Idol received mix reviews. In April 2019, Sol reunited with Jeon Do-yeon, eighteen years after I Wish I Had a Wife, in the film Birthday. The film, inspired by the Sinking of MV Sewol tragedy, deals with the struggles faced by a couple who lose their son in a tragic accident. The film had its international premiere at the 2019 Far East Film Festival in Udine.
Sol is set to co-star in a human drama Perfect Man with Cho Jin-woong. He will also reunite with The Merciless director Byun Sung-hyun for the film King Maker. It will be released in 2020.
|Year||English title||Korean title||Role||Notes|
|1996||A Petal||꽃잎||Brother of girl|
|1998||Girls' Night Out||처녀들의 저녁식사||Gyu-sik|
|1999||Phantom: The Submarine||유령||Number 432|
|2000||Peppermint Candy||박하사탕||Kim Yong-ho|
|The Legend of Gingko||단적비연수||Juk|
|2001||I Wish I Had a Wife||나도 아내가 있었으면 좋겠다||Kim Bong-soo|
|2002||Public Enemy||공공의 적||Kang Chul-joong|
|The Bird That Stops in the Air||새는 폐곡선을 그린다||Kim|
|Jail Breakers||광복절 특사||Yu Jae-pil|
|2005||Another Public Enemy||공공의 적 2||Kang Chul-joong|
|2006||Lost in Love||사랑을 놓치다||Woo-jae|||
|Cruel Winter Blues||열혈남아||Shim Jae-mun|||
|2007||Voice of a Murderer||그놈 목소리||Han Kyung-bae|||
|Venus and Mars||싸움||Kim Sang-min|||
|2008||Public Enemy Returns||강철중: 공공의 적 1-1||Kang Chul-joong|
|Closer to Heaven||내 사랑 내 곁에||Kim Jong-do||Cameo|
|A Brand New Life||여행자||Jin-hee's father|
|2010||No Mercy||용서는 없다||Kang Min-ho|||
|Camellia||카멜리아||Yong-soo||Short film (segment: "Kamome")|
|2012||The Tower||타워||Kang Young-ki|
|2013||Cold Eyes||감시자들||Chief Detective Hwang|
|The Spy: Undercover Operation||스파이||Chul-soo|||
|2014||My Dictator||나의 독재자||Kim Sung-geun|||
|2015||The Long Way Home||서부전선||Nam-bok|||
|2017||Lucid Dream||루시드 드림||Bang-seop|||
|The Merciless||불한당: 나쁜 놈들의 세상||Jae-ho|||
|Memoir of a Murderer||살인자의 기억법||Byeong-soo|||
|1987: When the Day Comes||1987||Kim Jeong-nam||Special appearance|
|TBA||I Want to Know Your Parents||니 부모 얼굴이 보고 싶다|||
|Kingmaker: The Fox of the Election|||
|1988||Joy of Love||KBS|
|1997||A Bluebird Has It||KBS2|
Music video appearances
|2004||"I Loved You to Death"||SG Wannabe|
|2015||"How Much Love Do You Have in Your Wallet?"||Park Yoo-chun|
Awards and nominations
|1992||28th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best New Actor in Theater||Won|
|1999||7th Chunsa Film Art Awards||Best New Actor||Rainbow Trout||Nominated|
|20th Blue Dragon Film Awards||Best New Actor||Nominated|
|2000||10th Oslo International Film Festival||Special Mention Award||Peppermint Candy||Won|
|36th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best New Actor in Film||Won|
|8th Chunsa Film Art Awards||Best Actor||Won|
|23rd Golden Cinematography Awards||Best New Actor||Won|
|2nd International Film Festival Bratislava||Best Actor||Won|
|37th Grand Bell Awards||Best New Actor||Won|
|21st Blue Dragon Film Awards||Won|
|20th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards||Best New Actor||Won|
|Cine 21 Awards||Best Actor||Peppermint Candy
The Legend of Gingko
|2002||38th Baeksang Arts Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang) in Film||Public Enemy||Won|
|Best Actor in Film||Nominated|
|39th Grand Bell Awards||Best Actor||Won|
|23rd Blue Dragon Film Awards||Won|
|Cine 21 Awards||Public Enemy
|10th Chunsa Film Art Awards||Oasis||Won|
|3rd Busan Film Critics Awards||Won|
|22nd Korean Association of Film Critics Awards||Won|
|1st Korean Film Awards||Won|
|5th Director's Cut Awards||Won|
|2003||39th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actor in Film||Nominated|
|29th Seattle International Film Festival||Best Actor||Won|
|26th Golden Cinematography Awards||Most Popular Actor||Won|
|29th Seoul International Film Festival||Best Actor||Won|
|3rd Korea World Youth Film Festival||Favorite Actor||Won|
|2004||40th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actor in Film||Silmido||Nominated|
|2005||42nd Grand Bell Awards||Best Actor||Rikidōzan||Nominated|
|Another Public Enemy||Nominated|
|2006||3rd Max Movie Awards||Nominated|
|2007||44th Grand Bell Awards||Voice of a Murderer||Nominated|
|28th Blue Dragon Film Awards||Nominated|
|6th Korean Film Awards||Cruel Winter Blues||Nominated|
|15th Chunsa Film Art Awards||Nominated|
|2008||16th Chunsa Film Art Awards||Public Enemy Returns||Nominated|
|29th Blue Dragon Film Awards||Nominated|
|Popular Star Award||Won|
|2009||45th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actor in Film||Nominated|
|46th Grand Bell Awards||Best Actor||Haeundae||Nominated|
|17th Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang) in Film||Won|
|2010||18th Chunsa Film Art Awards||Best Actor||No Mercy||Won|
|2013||34th Blue Dragon Film Awards||Popular Star Award||Hope||Won|
|33rd Korean Association of Film Critics Awards||Nominated|
|2014||50th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actor in Film||Won|
|13th New York Asian Film Festival||Star Asia Award||N/A||Won|
|22nd Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards||Grand Prize (Daesang) in Film||My Dictator||Won|
|1st Korean Film Producers Association Awards||Best Actor||Won|
|2015||51st Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actor in Film||Nominated|
|35th Golden Cinematography Awards||Best Actor||Won|
|2017||Korean Film Shining Star Awards||Star Award||The Merciless
|1st The Seoul Awards||Best Actor in Film||The Merciless
Memoir of a Murderer
|54th Grand Bell Awards||Best Actor||The Merciless||Won|
|37th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards||Won|
|38th Blue Dragon Film Awards||Popular Star Award||Won|
|Cine 21 Awards||Won|
|17th Director's Cut Awards||Memoir of a Murderer||Won|
|2018||9th KOFRA Film Awards||Won|
|54th Baeksang Arts Awards||Best Actor in Film||The Merciless||Nominated|
|23rd Chunsa Film Art Awards||Best Actor||Nominated|
- Lee, Yong-sung (20 October 2005). "Film star comes back to drama stage". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- Scott, A.O. (31 March 2001). "Peppermint Candy: A Life Retreats From Tragedy to Happy Beginnings". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Actors and Actresses of Korean Cinema: Sol Kyung-gu". Koreanfilm.org. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Seol Soldiers on to Make 'Silmido' a Blockbuster". Chosun via Hancinema. 19 December 2003.
- "'Silmido' makes box office history". Korea JoongAng Daily. 19 February 2004.
- Lee, Seung-jae (1 December 2004). "I Reflected on Myself in Rikidozan". The Dong-a Ilbo. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Sul Kyung-gu Brings a Touch of Muscle to Wrestling Role". The Chosun Ilbo. 15 December 2004. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Film Sequels to Hit Local Theaters". The Korea Times. 9 January 2005.
- "Sul Returns as Kang Cheol-jung". The Korea Times. 19 June 2008.
- "[INTERVIEW] Actor Sul Kyung-gu (Part 1)". 10Asia. 11 January 2010.
- "[INTERVIEW] Actor Sul Kyung-gu (Part 2)". 10Asia. 12 January 2010.
- "[INTERVIEW] Actor Sul Kyung-gu (Part 3)". 10Asia. 12 January 2010.
- Kim, Hyun-min; Lee, Eun-sun (21 December 2012). "THE TOWER's SOL Kyung-gu & SON Ye-jin: Actors' Experience from the Desperate Survival Drama". Korean Film Biz Zone. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Police Are Hot in Pursuit of a Kingpin in COLD EYES". Korean Film Biz Zone. 8 February 2013.
- "Kim Hye-soo and Sol Kyung-gu to be awarded the Best Actress and Actor". Hancinema. 20 September 2015.
- "Sol Kyung-gu to Teach Acting at Hanyang University". The Chosun Ilbo. 11 March 2014. Retrieved 2014-10-09.
- Park, Si-soo (20 March 2014). "Entertainers take on teaching role". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2014-10-09.
- "SEOL Kyung-gu Becomes Professor". Korean Film Biz Zone. 13 March 2014.
- "'The Merciless' is a Korean bromance with style".
- "BONG Joon-ho Scores 4th DGK Award for OKJA". Korean Film Biz Zone (Press release). December 15, 2017.
- "1987 Tops Korean Film Reporters Association Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone (Press release). February 9, 2018.
- "[이슈IS] 오달수 주연작 전편 무기한 개봉 연기.."대책 없다"" (in Korean). JTBC. 5 June 2018.
- Yoon, Min-sik (March 11, 2019). "[Herald Review] Style, great acting not enough to salvage pretentious and gratuitous 'Idol'". Korea Herald. Retrieved March 18, 2019.
- "Ferry Disaster-Inspired Film Set for Release in April". Chosun Ilbo. February 20, 2019. Retrieved March 18, 2019.
- Frater, Patrick (March 28, 2019). "Udine Festival to Open With Korean Tragedy 'Birthday'". Variety. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
- "SUL Kyung-gu and CHO Jin-woong Line Up for Bromance PERFECT MAN". Korean Film Biz Zone. September 17, 2018. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
- ""King Maker" Sol Kyung-gu, Byun Sung-hyun, Lee Sun-kyun to continue "The Merciless" syndrome". Hancinema. July 31, 2018. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
- "[Photos + Cast Update] First Reading Stills Added and Cast Updated for the Upcoming Korean Movie "King Maker"". Hancinema. March 29, 2019. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
- "Actor Sul and Actress Song to Marry on May 28". The Korea Times. 8 May 2009. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- Lee, Hyo-won (8 May 2009). "Actors Sul, Song to Tie Knot on May 28". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Sol Kyung-gu, Song Yun-ah to Wed". The Chosun Ilbo. 11 May 2009. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Love, loss and lucid cinematic silence". Korea JoongAng Daily. 16 May 2006.
- "'Lost in Love' depicts lovers lacking courage to tell truth". The Korea Herald. 26 January 2006.
- "Sul Kyung-gu: no Ordinary Action Hero". The Chosun Ilbo. 8 November 2006. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "Stars of His Voice found roles with meaning". Korea JoongAng Daily. 8 January 2007.
- "Voice of Murderer: New Feature from PARK Jin-pyo". Korean Film Biz Zone. 13 December 2006.
- "Kim Tae-hee, Sul Kyoung-gu Battle Onscreen". The Korea Times. 20 November 2007.
- "Sul, Ryu ignite screen in new thriller". The Korea Herald. 30 March 2010.
- "Actors Show No Mercy for Vengeance". The Korea Times. 24 December 2009.
- Song, Woong-ki (12 August 2010). "Sul says his latest film was the most difficult". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- "'Troubleshooter' plays it too safe". The Korea Times. 2 September 2010.
- "Sul Kyung-gu, Moon Sori, Daniel Henney cast in film "Mister K"". 10Asia. 10 February 2012.
- "THE SPY: UNDERCOVER OPERATION Press Conference Was Held". Korean Film Biz Zone. 6 August 2013.
- "NY Asian 2014: HOPE, Korean Acting Legend Sol Kyung-gu Tackles Family Devastation". Screen Daily. 22 July 2014.
- "MY DICTATOR Begins Shooting with SEOL Kyung-gu and PARK Hae-il". Korean Film Biz Zone. 4 April 2014.
- Jang, Sung-ran (28 October 2014). "Playing a most dictatorial dad". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-10-30.
- "SEOL Kyung-gu and YEO Jin-gu Team for Korean War Film". Korean Film Biz Zone. 25 August 2014.
- Jang, Sung-ran; Kim, Hyo-eun (22 September 2015). "Becoming friends on screen and off". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2015-09-22.
- Shim, Sun-ah (22 September 2015). "(Yonhap Interview) Actor attracted by dullness of The Long Way Home". Yonhap News Agency. Retrieved 2015-09-24.
- "KO Soo and SUL Kyung-gu Star in LUCID DREAM". Korean Film Biz Zone. 21 January 2015.
- "SUL Kyung-gu & IM Si-wan Wrap HOODLUM". Korean Film Biz Zone. 22 December 2016.
- "[Herald Interview] 'The Merciless' shows a new Seol Kyung-gu". The Korea Herald. 10 May 2017.
- "SUL Kyung-gu, KIM Nam-gil Board New Thriller". Korean Film Biz Zone. 1 September 2015.
- "Seol Gyeong-Gu, Wants to become a Proud Actor (Interview)". 10Asia. 10 September 2017.
- "1987 Adds YOO Hae-jin, YEO Jin-gu and SUL Kyung-gu". Korean Film Biz Zone. 6 April 2017.
- "IDOL Begins Filming with HAN Suk-kyu, SUL Kyung-gu and CHUN Woo-hee". Korean Film Biz Zone. 6 November 2017.
- "JEON Do-yeon and SUL Kyung-gu to Celebrate BIRTHDAY". Korean Film Biz Zone. 9 April 2018.
- "SUL Kyung-gu, OH Dal-su, CHUN Woo-hee, MOON So-ri Enter School Bullying Drama". Korean Film Biz Zone. 23 June 2017.
- "Cho Jin-woong, Seol Kyeong-goo, Oh Dal-soo in "Mongyudowondo"". Star MK via Hancinema. 29 December 2016.
- "SUL Kyung-gu & BYUN Sung-hyun Reunite for KINGMAKER: THE FOX OF THE ELECTION". Korean Film Biz Zone. 30 July 2018.
- "SUL Kyung-gu and CHO Jin-woong Line Up for Bromance PERFECT MAN". Korean Film Biz Zone. 17 September 2018.
- "Ratcatcher reels in top prize at Bratislava". Screen Daily. 15 December 2000.
- "Blue Dragon Award Goes to Sports Drama". The Chosun Ilbo. 21 November 2008.
- "HOPE Scores Best Film at 34th Blue Dragon Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. 25 November 2013.
- "SONG Kang-ho Picks Up Grand Prize at PaekSang Arts Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. 29 May 2014.
- "Screen International to honour Fumi Nikaido at NYAFF". Screen Daily. 3 June 2014.
- "Kim Hye-soo and Sul Kyung-gu to be awarded the Best Actress and Actor". Segye via Hancinema. 20 September 2015.
- "A TAXI DRIVER Triumphs at 54th Daejong Film Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. 30 October 2017.
- "THE FORTRESS Dominates 37th Korean Film Critics Association Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. 30 December 2017.
- "A TAXI DRIVER Drives Off with 4 Blue Dragons". Korean Film Biz Zone. 1 December 2017.
- "BONG Joon-ho Scores 4th DGK Award for OKJA". Korean Film Biz Zone. 15 December 2017.
- "1987 Tops Korean Film Reporters Association Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. 9 February 2018.
- "제54회 백상예술대상, TV·영화 각 부문별 수상 후보자 공개". JTBC (in Korean). 6 April 2018.
- "제23회 춘사영화제 5월18일 개최..홍상수·김민희 참석하나". Newsen (in Korean). 3 May 2018.
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