Steven Yeun

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Steven Yeun
Yeun at the 2015 San Diego Comic-Con
Born Yeun Sang-yeop
(1983-12-21) December 21, 1983 (age 32)
Seoul, South Korea
Residence Los Angeles, California
Nationality Korean - American
Alma mater Kalamazoo College
Occupation Actor
Years active 2005–present
Korean name
Hangul 연상엽
Revised Romanization Yeon Sang-yeop
McCune–Reischauer Yǒn Sangyǒp

Steven Yeun /ˈjʌn/ (Korean: 연상엽; born December 21, 1983) is a Korean American actor best known for portraying Glenn Rhee on the The Walking Dead, an AMC television horror drama series. Yeun has also appeared in independent film and short films, and has done video games.

Early life[edit]

Yeun was born in Seoul, South Korea to South Korean parents Je and June Yeun.[1] His father was an architect in South Korea[2] before moving his family to Regina, Saskatchewan and later to Michigan.[3] Yeun was raised in Troy, Michigan in a Christian household.[4][5][6] His parents owned two beauty supply stores in Detroit.[5] Yeun received a bachelor's degree in psychology with a concentration in neuroscience[1] from Kalamazoo College in 2005.[5] At Kalamazoo, he met Jordan Klepper through Klepper's sister and later followed him to Chicago to join Second City.[1]


Yeun's interest in acting and improv came during his freshman year at Kalamazoo, when he watched the college's improv group, Monkapult. He auditioned for Monkapult, but was initially rejected before successfully joining the group during his sophomore year.[5]

Yeun revealed to his parents that he planned to pursue an improv career in Chicago instead of enrolling in law school or medical school. His parents, while unhappy with the decision, were supportive, according to Yeun, and gave him two years to pursue acting.[5] He moved to Chicago in 2005, living in the city's Lincoln Square with his brother.[4] Shortly after graduation, he joined Stir Friday Night, a sketch comedy group composed of Asian-American members.[5]

Yeun joined The Second City in Chicago before moving to Los Angeles in October 2009.[5]

The Walking Dead[edit]

Yeun's biggest role to date is Glenn Rhee on The Walking Dead, an AMC television horror drama based on the comic book series of the same name. Rhee is a main character who with his friends is forced to relentlessly fight evil just to survive in a violent, apocalyptic world infested with flesh-eating zombies and the few surviving humans, some of whom are even more diabolical and dangerous than the zombies themselves. The drama is the highest rated series in cable television history, with its fourth and fifth season garnering widespread critical acclaim and the top ranking in the 18–49 years demographic across the entirety of the seasons,[7] with the series generally receiving rave reviews from recognized television critics.[8][9]

Personal life[edit]

Yeun is an investor of The Bun Shop, a Korean-Mediterranean fusion restaurant in Koreatown, Los Angeles owned by his younger brother Brian Yeun and business partner James Seok. .[10][11][12] Yeun speaks some Korean but is not fluent.[13]



Year Title Role Notes
2009 The Kari Files Chip Short film
2009 My Name Is Jerry Chaz
2010 Carpe Millennium Kevin Short film
2010 Blowout Sale Customer Short film
2014 I Origins Kenny
2016 Chew Tony Chu Voice


Year Title Role Notes
2010 The Big Bang Theory Sebastian Episode: "The Staircase Implementation"
2010–present The Walking Dead Glenn Rhee Seasons 1-present (main role; 59 episodes)
Satellite Award for Best Cast – Television Series (2012)
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor on Television (2011)
2011 Law & Order: LA Ken Hasui Episode: "Hayden Tract"
2011 Warehouse 13 Gibson Rice Episode: "Don't Hate the Player"
2012 NTSF:SD:SUV:: Ricky Meeker Episode: "16 Hop Street"
2012 Harder Than it Looks Steven Episode: "Lockdown"
2013 The Legend of Korra Avatar Wan (voice) 3 episodes
2013 Filthy Sexy Teen$ Martin Pilot
2014 Drunk History Daniel Inouye Episode: "Hawaii"
2014 Comedy Bang! Bang! Himself Episode: "Steven Yeun Wears Rolled Up Black Jeans & No Socks"

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role
2007 Crysis Korean Soldier (voice)
2008 Crysis Warhead Korean Soldier (voice)


  1. ^ a b c "ON THE ROAD WITH STEVEN YEUN". Interview Magazine. Retrieved September 29, 2014. 
  2. ^ "‘Walking Dead': Steven Yeun’s Glenn is beating heart of AMC series". Los Angeles Times. February 8, 2013. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  3. ^ Yeun, Steven (October 6, 2014). Steven Yeun on his Parents. Interview with Ellen DeGeneres. YouTube. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Arroyve, Luis (November 21, 2010). "Steven Yeun makes jump from Second City to AMC's 'Walking Dead'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 27, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Liberty, John (October 30, 2010). "College grad vs. zombies: Michigan native stars in new AMC series 'The Walking Dead'". Kalamazoo Gazette. Retrieved February 27, 2011. 
  6. ^ Murphy, Kate (October 27, 2012). "Steven Yeun". The New York Times. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  7. ^ Bibel, Sara (March 30, 2015). "'The Walking Dead' Season 5 Finale is Highest Rated Finale in Series History, Garnering 15.8 Million Viewers". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved March 30, 2015. 
  8. ^ Template:Cite also in American horror story coven in 2014 web
  9. ^ "The Walking Dead : Season 5". Metacritic. Retrieved January 22, 2015. 
  10. ^ "Steven Yeun". The New Potato. February 7, 2014. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Photos: Steven Yeun Of 'The Walking Dead' Brings Flavor Of Detroit To K-Town". laist. February 26, 2014. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  12. ^ "BUSTING OUT THE BIG BUNS: HANGING WITH BRIAN YEUN AND JAMES SEOK OF THE BUN SHOP". iamkoream. May 14, 2014. Retrieved October 8, 2014. 
  13. ^ Jones, Julie (November 18, 2014). Steven's favorite person in the world is Ava simons + Ava Simons is Stevens #1 fan! dead.htm "2NE1 Meets 'The Walking Dead'" Check |url= value (help). KDramaStars. Retrieved 1 June 2015. 

External links[edit]