Yoo Jae-suk

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Yoo Jae-suk
Yoo Jae-seok 2016.jpg
Born (1972-08-14) August 14, 1972 (age 45)
Suyu-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Medium Stand-up, television
Nationality South Korean
Years active 1991 – present
Genres Observational, Sketch, Wit, Parody, Slapstick
Spouse Na Kyung-Eun (announcer) (m. 2008)
Children Yoo Ji Ho (b. 2010)
Korean name
Hangul
Hanja
Revised Romanization Yu Jae-seok
McCune–Reischauer Yu Chae-sŏk

Yoo Jae-suk (Hangul유재석; RRYu Jae-seok; born on August 14, 1972), is a South Korean comedian, host and television personality currently signed to FNC Entertainment. He has hosted several variety television shows in South Korea, including the popular program Infinite Challenge and the world wide popular program "Running Man". Known for his quick wit and appeal across a wide range of demographics, Yoo has established himself as one of Korea's top comedians and TV personalities.[1][2][3][4]

Early life and education[edit]

Born on August 14, 1972 in Seoul, South Korea, Yoo is the eldest of three siblings. He attended Seoul Institute of the Arts, but was unable to graduate due to his busy schedule as an up-and-coming comedian.

Career[edit]

Beginnings[edit]

Yoo's television debut was on the KBS Comedian Festival (for college students) in 1991, where he performed a parody of a commercial with Choi Seung-gyung (Hangul최승경). Him dancing to a cover of the song "Step by Step" by New Kids on the Block is also one of his early memorable moments.[5] In 2002, after nine hard years as a relatively unknown comedian, thanks to a recommendation by Choi Jin-sil, he hosted a program called Live and Enjoy Together (Hangul동거동락). The program became instantly popular and since then Yoo began to host many other variety programs. He then rose to prominence when he co-hosted a program called The Crash of MCs (HangulMC 대격돌 – 공포의 쿵쿵따) with Kang Ho-dong, Lee Hwi-jae and Kim Han-seok (Hangul김한석).

His first Grand Prize award was for a popular program called Happy Together Friends. The show's concept was for TV personalities to try to find their school friends (five of them) out of many (false friends) who are sitting behind a desk. The show was intended to bring back nostalgic memories about one's days in school. This Grand Prize was especially memorable, not just because it was Yoo's first, but because it was from the broadcasting station where he made his debut.

Mainstream recognition as "Nation's MC"[edit]

X-Man[edit]

He later went on to host the show X-Man, which soon grew to be one of the most popular and most viewed shows in Korea. During that time, he became increasingly popular and many programs began to nickname Yoo as the "Nation's MC." Then Yoo went on to host various shows, New X-Man, Old TV (in which guests would re-enact classic TV serials), and Haja! Go! (Let's Do It) for SBS, which were shortly canceled due to low ratings on Sunday evenings. However, X-Man has found success in international syndication.

Infinite Challenge[edit]

Yoo is a part of the cast of the top-rated comedy variety program Infinite Challenge (Hangul무한도전) with Jeong Hyeon Don and Noh Hong Chul. He is the host-in-chief since 2005 and one of the program's founding members. The program wasn't popular when it first aired and its average ratings were low (roughly 5 percent). After Kim Tae-ho took a role as new PD, the program underwent several changes both in its concept and the cast. New members such as Park Myeong-su, Haha, and Jeong Jun-ha were added to the cast of Infinite Challenge in 2006. By the time season 3 of the show aired in 2006, the concept and format of "variety & reality program" became very popular, and Infinite Challenge became the forerunner of many programs that followed with the same or similar format. Since December 2, 2006, the program has received the highest ratings of prime-time lineups for Saturday evening.[6]

Infinite Challenge is seen as Yoo's favorite and best program as not only did he meet his wife, Na Kyung-eun (Hangul나경은) during season 2, but he was able to gain even more popularity due the rising popularity of the show and its significant effect on the general public. He ended up winning a total of six Grand Prizes (2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2014, 2016) with the program.[7] His love for this program was reflected during 1-on-1 talk with fellow co-host, Jeong Hyeong-don, on "Pause" special (S04E300) that aired on October 20, 2012. He said "I think my life on television and variety shows will be tied to the fate of Infinite Challenge." and "When will we ever get to do another program like this? No matter how hard you try, it's going to be impossible to do another film like this."[8]

Talk shows[edit]

Yoo also co-hosts Come to Play (Hangul놀러와) with Kim Won-hee and Happy Together Season 3 (Hangul해피 투게더 3) with Park Myeong-su, Park Mi-sun and Shin Bong-sun. Yoo hosted these talk shows for a long period of time (both over 5 years), and the ratings have been consistently high throughout his tenure. Although Happy Together is still broadcasting, Come to Play was cancelled in 2012.[9] Yoo tries his best to differentiate his hosting styles, both based on who his guests are and on their current situation.

Good Sunday Variety Programs: Family Outing and Running Man[edit]

After those replacement shows on SBS, on June 15, 2008, Yoo became the main host of Family Outing (Hangul패밀리가 떴다) as a part of SBS's Good Sunday lineup. Together with Lee Hyori, Yoon Jong-shin, Kim Su-ro, Lee Chun-hee, Kang Dae-sung, Park Ye-jin and Kim Jong-kook (since episode 19), they made up the "family" (cast members) of the show. Family Outing has become one of the top-rated shows in Korea, consistently achieving the highest ratings for the Sunday mid-afternoon time-slot, and has gained online popularity among Hallyu fans.

Since July 11, 2010, Yoo has hosted the urban action variety Running Man together with fellow Infinite Challenge member, Haha, and other entertainers such as Ji Suk-jin, Kim Jong-kook, Leessang's Gary (who left since episode 324 to focus on his music career), Song Ji-hyo, Lee Kwang-soo, Song Joong-ki (who left since episode 41 to focus on his acting career) and Lizzy of After School (who left for unknown reasons). Although the program did not have a good start in ratings, it later became popular, and has a consistent international fanbase to this day.

Guest appearances and collaborations[edit]

In 2012, Yoo and fellow hosts of Infinite Challenge, Noh Hong-chul and Haha, appeared in the music video for Psy's hit single "Gangnam Style".[10] In the video, he was reprising the retro disco dancing character he created for the mock-band "Sagging Snail" in Infinite Challenge's West Coast Highway Music Festival special where Psy also appeared. Together with the cast of Infinite Challenge, Yoo once again appeared in Psy's follow-up single, "Gentleman".

On July 15, 2015, Yoo signed an exclusive contract with FNC Entertainment after having been without an agency for about 5 years.[11] In September 2015, he made a cameo appearance in the South Korean drama, My Daughter, Geum Sa-wol.[12]

From 2015 to 2016, Yoo hosted the program Two Yoo Project Sugar Man together with You Hee-yeol. The programs focus on remaking hit songs from singers who has disappeared from the public eye.

In 2016, Yoo Jae-suk collaborated with EXO for SM Station single named "Dancing King", which is also a collaboration for Infinite Challenge. He performed with them at EXO's EXO Planet #3 - EXO'rDIUM concert in Bangkok.

In the media[edit]

Yoo has been dubbed "the nation's MC" to his broad appeal and popularity with a wide demographic of viewers. He is also nicknamed "The Grasshopper", due to his early appearances where he dressed as a grasshopper.[5]

Known as one of the most popular and beloved television personalities in Korea,[13] Yoo has consistently being picked as a role model by fellow entertainers as well as the citizens of Korea.[14] He is also known for his philanthropy.[15][16]

Yoo is the first television host to have his own wax figure, displayed at the Grevin Seoul Museum.[17]

Personal life[edit]

On July 6, 2008, Yoo married MBC announcer, Na Kyung-eun (Hangul나경은), who worked with him on the show Infinite Challenge.[18][19] Yoo and his wife welcomed their first child, a son, Yoo Ji-ho, on May 1, 2010.[20][21]

Filmography[edit]

Television host[edit]

List of present programs
Year Title Network Notes
2006–present Infinite Challenge MBC Member (Host-in-chief) (since 2006.05.06)
2007–present Happy Together Season 3 KBS2 Co-Host (since 2007.06.28)
2010–present Running Man SBS Member (since 2010.07.11)
List of former programs
Year Title Network Notes
2000 - 2002 Achievable SaturdayStar Survival Donggeodongrak (Live and Fun Together) MBC Host
2002 Super TV Enjoy Sunday KBS2 Co-Host
! Exclamation Mark MBC Co-Host
2002 - 2003 Dangerous Invitation KBS Co-Host
2003 - 2007 X-Man SBS Host-in-chief
2004 - 2005 Happy Together – Tray Singing Room (Karaoke) KBS2 Co-Host
2004 - 2012 Yoo Jae-suk & Kim Won-hee's Come to Play MBC Host
2005 - 2007 Happy Together – Tray Singing Room (Karaoke) KBS2 Co-Host
Yoo Jae-suk's Truth Game SBS Host
2007 Haja Go! (Let's Do It!) SBS Host-in-chief
Old TV SBS Host-in-chief
2007 - 2008 Miracle Contestant SBS Host
2008 - 2010 Family Outing SBS Host
2014 I Am a Man KBS2 Co-Host
2015 Two Yoo Project Sugar Man JTBC Host
Same Bed, Different Dreams SBS Host

Timeline[edit]

Television dramas[edit]

Year Title Role Network
2000 - 2001 Great Friends KBS
2005 Banjun Drama SBS
2008 Yi San Cameo MBC
2009 Queen of Housewives Cameo
2015 The Girl Who Sees Smells Cameo with Running Man members SBS
My Daughter, Geum Sa-wol Cameo MBC

Films[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1994 Tyranno's Toenail
2008 Bee Movie (Korean dubbing as Barry B. Benson)
2009 White Tuft, the Little Beaver (Korean dubbing as narrator & Owl)[22]

Music video appearances[edit]

Year Song Title Artist
2004 "Cause' You're Pretty" (이쁘니까) Shinnago (신나고)
2005 "Look Out the Window" Kang Ho-dong
2009 "Let's Dance" Future Liger (with Tiger JK, Tasha)
2012 "Room Nallari" (방구석 날라리) Sagging Snail (처진 달팽이; with Lee Juck)
"Gangnam Style" (강남스타일) Psy
2013 "Gentleman"
2014 "Beep" Park Ji-yoon
2015 "Tell Me One More Time" Jinusean
2016 "Dancing King" EXO

Radio[edit]

Year Title Network
2000 FM Date
KBS
FM Plus
MBC
Lee Hwi-jae's Starry Night (K-Pop Quiz)
2001 Wishlist Songs Playing at Noon
2003 A Date at 2 pm
2005 Wishlist Songs Playing at Noon (Nutrition Tonic Talk Show with Kang Ho-dong)
Defeat the Boredom
Haha's Ten Ten Club
SBS
All Thanks to You
2006 Wishlist Songs Playing at Noon (Nutrition Tonic Talk Show No. 2 with Kang Ho-dong)
MBC
Park Myeong-su's Fun Fun Radio (Summer Special)
Noh Hong-chul's Our Belated Youthful Days
SBS
2007 Park Myeong-su's Fun Fun Radio (Phone)
MBC
Park Myeong-su's Fun Fun Radio (The Age of a Big Star)
Yoon Jong-shin's A Date at 2 pm (Stalking)
2008 Park Myeong-su's A Date at 2 pm (Phone)
Park Kyung-lim's Starry Night (Phone)
2009 Song Eun-ee, Shin Bong-sun's Dong Go Dong Rak (with Noh Hong-chul)
SBS
2014 Tablo's Dreaming Radio (Daily DJ)
MBC

Discography[edit]

Singles
Year Title Notes
2006 "All You Need Is Love" with Infinite Challenge members
2007 "If I Do It or Not" (하나마나송) with Noh Hong-chul
"Fascination of Samba" (삼바의 매력) a part of Infinite Challenge Song Festival (강변북로 가요제)
2009 "The Family's Day" (패밀리의 하루) with Family Outing members
"Let's Dance" a part of Infinite Challenge Olympic Road Duet Song Festival with Tiger JK, Tasha (올림픽대로 듀엣 가요제)
2011 "Apgujeong Nallari" (압구정 날라리) a part of Infinite Challenge West Coast Highway Music Festival with Lee Juck
"As I Say" (말하는 대로) a part of Infinite Challenge West Coast Highway Music Festival with Lee Juck
2012 "Room Nallari" (방구석 날라리) Sagging Snail (처진달팽이) with Lee Juck
"Heat Stroked Seagull" (더위 먹은 갈매기) with Song Eun-yi (송은이), Kim Sook (김숙) (Arrangement of RockBrain (collaboration of Noh Hong-chul and NoBrain)'s "Heat Stroked Seagull")
2013 "Please Don't Go My Girl" with You Hee-yeol (유희열), Kim Jo-Han (김조한)
"Dance King" (댄스왕) Yoo Jae-Suk (유재석) feat You Hee-yeol (유희열) (Bonus track for Muhan Dojeon Jayuro Music Festival Album)
2014 "Eyes, Nose, Lips" (눈, 코, 입) by Taeyang -parody
2015 "I'm So Sexy" Dancing Genome (댄싱게놈), a part of Infinite Challenge Yeongdong Expressway Music Festival with Park Jin-young
2016 "Dancing King" collaboration with EXO through SM Station
"Like" (처럼) Yoo Jae-suk (유재석) with Dok2, feat. Lee Hi, a part of Infinite Challenge History × Hiphop special

Awards[edit]

Year Award Category Results
1991 Inaugural KBS College Student Gag Competition Honorable Award Won
2000 MBC Drama Awards Special Award in Television MC Won
Gyeongin Broadcasting and Entertainment Popular Comedian Award Won
2002 1st KBS Entertainment Awards Best Television Presenter Won
Book Publishing Promotion Book Reading Special Award Won
2003 2nd KBS Entertainment Awards Top Excellence Award in Television MC Won
3rd MBC Entertainment Awards Top Excellence Award in Show/Variety Won
2004 SBS Drama Awards Special Award in Television MC Won
2005 4th KBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
2006 18th Korean Broadcasting Producer Awards Best Television MC Won
42nd Baeksang Arts Awards Best Male TV Personality Won
Blue Media Speech Award Won
6th MBC Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
2007 7th MBC Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) (with Infinite Challenge members) Won
8th Korea Video Competition Photogenic Award Won
Mobile Entertainment Awards Best Television MC Won
2008 2nd Mnet 20's Choice Awards Variety Star of the Year Won
2nd SBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
1st Nickelodeon Korea Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Comedian Won
2009 21st Korean Broadcasting Producer Awards Best Television MC Won
9th MBC Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
PD Award Won
3rd SBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) (with Lee Hyori) Won
Best Teamwork Award (for Family Outing) Won
2nd Nickelodeon Korea Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Comedian Won
2010 9th KBS Entertainment Awards Best Teamwork Award (for Happy Together 3) Won
10th MBC Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
Korean Guardian Tree Award Won
4th SBS Entertainment Awards Best 10 Entertainers Won
3rd Nickelodeon Korea Kids' Choice Awards Favourite Comedian Won
2011 11th MBC Entertainment Awards Top Excellence Award in a Variety Show Won
5th SBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
4th Nickelodeon Korea Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Comedian Won
53rd National Rowing Championships 2000m Novice Eight Special Award (with Infinite Challenge members) Won
2012 12th MBC Entertainment Awards PD Award[9][23] Won
6th SBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
Viewers' Favorite TV Personality Won
3rd Korean Popular Culture and Arts Award Prime Minister Award Won
5th Nickelodeon Korea Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Comedian Won
2013 49th Baeksang Arts Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) for TV Won
6th Nickelodeon Korea Kids Choice Awards Favorite Comedian Won
12th KBS Entertainment Awards Eating Broadcast Award (for Happy Together 3) Won
7th SBS Entertainment Awards Viewer's Choice Most Popular Entertainer Award Won
7th SBS Entertainment Awards Viewer's Most Popular Award (with Running Man members) Won
2014 13th KBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
14th MBC Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
8th SBS Entertainment Awards Viewer's Choice Most Popular Entertainer Award Won
2015 15th MBC Entertainment Awards Achievement Award (with Infinite Challenge members) Won
9th SBS Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) (with Kim Byung-man) Won
Viewers' Favorite TV Personality Won
2016 15th KBS Entertainment Awards Best Teamwork Award (for Happy Together 3) Won
16th MBC Entertainment Awards Daesang (Grand Prize) Won
InStyle Korea Entertainer Star Icon (Male category) Won

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Yoo Jae-suk: Who's Who in Korean Variety - Korean Variety Recaps". Korean Variety Recaps. 2017-04-21. Retrieved 2017-05-29. 
  2. ^ "Yoo Named Comedian of the Year". The Korea Times. 21 December 2009. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  3. ^ "Yoo Jae-suk MBC's Priciest Entertainer". The Korea Times. 12 October 2009. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  4. ^ "Yoo Jae-suk Paid Nearly W1 Billion by MBC in 2008". The Chosun Ilbo. 12 October 2009. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  5. ^ a b Park, Shin-hong; Lee, Sun-mi (13 June 2013). "With fame comes humility for Yoo Jae-suk". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-07-04. 
  6. ^ "The rating of Muhan Dojeon renewed again to its highest mark" Archived March 9, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.. Star News (in Korean). 26 November 2006. Retrieved 2013-07-02.
  7. ^ Han, Sang-hee (30 December 2009). "Yoo Jae-suk Named Top Entertainer at Year-End Event". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  8. ^ "Infinite Challenge Yoo Jae Suk Reveals Feelings On 300th Episode". KDramaStars. 22 October 2012. Retrieved 2013-07-04. 
  9. ^ a b Jeon, Su-mi (31 December 2012). "Yoo Jae Suk Says Goodbye to Come to Play at the MBC Entertainment Awards". Retrieved 2013-07-02. 
  10. ^ "Yoo Jae Suk's mushroom hair draws attention". Allkpop. 13 July 2012. Retrieved 2013-04-22. 
  11. ^ 홍세영 (July 16, 2015). 유재석, FNC와 전속계약…정형돈과 한솥밥. Sports DongA (in Korean). Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  12. ^ 김양수 (November 22, 2015). 유재석, 오늘(22일) '내딸 금사월' 출격…7년만의 연기도전. JoyNews24 (in Korean). Retrieved November 22, 2015. 
  13. ^ http://www.allkpop.com/article/2015/08/yoo-jae-suk-is-deemed-most-loved-korean-star-by-an-overwhelming-amount-of-votes-in-a-survey
  14. ^ http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2016/09/116_204809.html
  15. ^ http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20140710001203
  16. ^ http://koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2016/10/398_215681.html
  17. ^ http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20160706001027
  18. ^ "Yoo Jae-seok and Na Kyung-eun's Wedding". KBS World. 19 July 2008. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  19. ^ Ho, Stewart (9 February 2012). "Photos from Yoo Jae Suk's Wedding Surface". enewsWorld. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  20. ^ hML "Yoo & Na welcome son"[dead link]. Yonhap (in Korean). 1 May 2010. Retrieved 2013-08-06.
  21. ^ "Na Kyung-eun Wants to Swap Mic for Maternal Duties". The Chosun Ilbo. 6 August 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  22. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on October 27, 2010. Retrieved November 11, 2010.  (in Korean)
  23. ^ "Park Myung Soo Wins Grand Prize at 2012 MBC Entertainment Awards". Soompi. 31 December 2012. Retrieved 2013-07-02. 

External links[edit]