|Born||December 20, 1978|
Seoul, South Korea
|Education||Chungkang College of Cultural Industries |
Kyung Hee University
|Revised Romanization||Yun Gye-sang|
Yoon Kye-sang (Korean: 윤계상; born December 20, 1978) is a South Korean actor and singer. He began his career in 1999 as part of the K-pop boy band g.o.d, then left the group in 2004 and pursued an acting career. He made his acting debut in the film Flying Boys (2004), for which he won Best New Actor at the Baeksang Arts Awards. Yoon became active in both television and film, with leading roles in romantic comedies such as My 19 Year Old Sister-in-Law (2004) and Who Are You? (2008) and the melodrama Crazy for You (2007), as well as more serious fare in The Moonlight of Seoul (2008) and The Executioner (2009). After a supporting turn in the hit series The Greatest Love (2011), he returned to the big screen in the well-received indie Poongsan (2011).
1999–2004: Pop star beginnings
In 1997 Yoon answered an advertisement for Park Joon-hyung's project music group and had auditioned with aspirations of becoming a rock star. Along with Danny Ahn, Son Ho-young, Kim Sun-a and producer and singer-songwriter Park Jin-young, the group was initially called "GOT6". Kim Sun-a left to pursue acting and was replaced by Kim Tae-woo. The group became a five-member boy band called g.o.d, short for "Groove Over Dose", and debuted in January 1999. Despite the lukewarm response to their debut performance, the group would go on to establish themselves as one of the most popular boy bands of the early 2000s. However, he left the band in 2004 and went into acting, making his film debut in Flying Boys, directed by Byun Young-joo. He made his television debut that same year in My 19 Year Old Sister-in-Law with Jung Da-bin.
The group would release their seventh and final album before going on indefinite hiatus in December 2005 and some of the group's fans called Yoon a "traitor" and blamed him for "breaking up the group". Various media outlets speculated that there was a rift amongst the members and that he had turned his back on them in favor of acting, rumors that Yoon and the other four members chose not to publicly confirm or deny. He has since clarified in his 2012 cooking show Yoon Kye-sang's One Table that he left the group with the intention of leaving the entertainment industry altogether as he had begun to detest the spotlight, but stumbled upon an opportunity to try acting and enjoyed it.
Having just departed from g.o.d, Yoon was at the height of his popularity, but had to interrupt his nascent acting career due to mandatory military service. He enlisted in the Republic of Korea Army on December 7, 2004, and was assigned to the 102nd Reserves at Chuncheon, Gangwon Province, on the Korean Demilitarized Zone. After completing basic training and serving there for some time, Yoon was reassigned in 2006 to duties as an "entertainment soldier" in the newly formed group Korean Forces Network, which provides television and radio broadcasts to soldiers, and also allows celebrities to maintain a public profile while completing their military service. He was discharged from the army on December 6, 2006. In an interview that day, he said that he had not slept the night before and was very tired, but looked forward to seeing his fans; he further stated that he planned to resume his career in 2007.
As late as June 2011, his military service still earned him public attention, when a round-cheeked photo of him in uniform "went viral" among South Korean internet users. The photos received many amused comments for his then-fat cheeks, forming a sharp contrast with his more recent appearance.
2007–2013: Acting career
In January 2007, Yoon returned to show business in the television drama Crazy in Love (also known as Crazy for You); he portrayed a gangster who falls in love with the widow (Lee Mi-yeon) of a man he'd accidentally killed. The following year, he and Kim Ha-neul were cast in Lovers of Six Years, playing a couple in a six-year relationship. According to Kim, her initial perception of Yoon was that he was very shy, whereas Yoon perceived Kim as snobby, so it took them some time to break the ice and establish a good working relationship. Later that year, he took a dual role in the comedy television series Who Are You?, playing a cold-hearted corporate raider who, in the aftermath of a traffic accident, becomes possessed by the spirit of a cheerful deliveryman for a few hours each day. At the same time he took a starring role opposite Ha Jung-woo in Beastie Boys (also known as The Moonlight of Seoul), portraying a worker in a host club; The Korea Times movie review praised him for his "gripping performance."
In 2009, he left his agency SidusHQ and joined My Name Is Entertainment. After doing a lighter role in the slice-of-life drama Triple, Yoon starred in the movie The Executioner, which examined capital punishment in South Korea; it debuted at the 14th Busan International Film Festival. Yoon played the role of a junior prison guard who takes up his post after failing an examination, and unluckily finds himself assigned to carry out executions after the only other guard in the prison with such experience quits. Just before the movie came out, he made controversial remarks in an interview with GQ Korea stating that the South Korean movie industry was dominated by leftists. As controversy rose among internet users over his remarks, he quickly made an apology for what he described as his "ignorance." He also became part of the ensemble cast in Come, Closer, a 2010 omnibus feature that follows the broken relationships of five couples.
After his highly anticipated big-budget Korean War drama Road No. 1, tanked in the ratings, Yoon said he wanted to play a character "who gets loved by the public" and took on a supporting role as a sweet, kind doctor in romantic comedy The Greatest Love.
The drama's success and Yoon's popularity in it helped bring attention to his next project, the low-budget, gritty indie Poongsan. Director Juhn Jai-hong fought to cast Yoon against type as the titular taciturn messenger, saying that he'd been impressed by the piercing gaze Yoon had shown in previous films. Calling it "a meaningful project," Yoon enjoyed the difficult acting challenge of telling the story only through his eyes, facial expressions and body movements. He was recognized with Best Actor nominations from the 2011 Grand Bell Awards and Blue Dragon Film Awards.
After starring in the third season of popular sitcom High Kick!, he was cast in the action thriller The Suspect, but withdrew when co-star Choi Min-sik backed out. He also pulled out from Acting Class when the big-screen comedy encountered pre-production delays.
In May 2012, he transferred to a new agency, A List Entertainment. Then Yoon and close friend, actor Kwon Se-in (who uses the stage name Kwon Yul) filmed the reality/travelogue program Real Mate in Sydney for seven days and six nights. Kwon also appeared on Yoon Kye-sang's One Table, a reality show on cable channel O'live that helped fulfill Yoon's dream of owning a restaurant. After honing his cooking skills and learning culinary secrets, Yoon prepared a feast for his former band members g.o.d on the show's season finale; it was also the first time in eight years all five members of g.o.d appeared on television together.
Yoon then signed with a new talent agency, Saram Entertainment.
2014–present: Return to g.o.d and reunion
In early 2014 it was announced that g.o.d's original five members would be reuniting to celebrate the band's 15th anniversary. It also marked Yoon's return to the music industry after a decade. They released their eighth album in July and afterwards embarked on a successful nationwide concert tour. Yoon wrote the lyrics for the song "Wind" (바람), which was released after the conclusion of their nationwide tour as a gesture of gratitude to fans.
In 2014, Yoon starred in the melodrama series The Full Sun, in which he played a con man who enters a complicated romance with a jewelry heiress. This was followed by the romantic comedy film Red Carpet, in the role of an adult film director who dreams of making his first commercial feature.
Minority Opinion (also known as The Unfair), Yoon's film where he played a public defender whose client is accused of killing a riot policeman during a forced demolition, which had wrapped filming in 2013, finally received a theatrical release in 2015. He next starred in Last, a cable series based on Kang Hyung-kyu's webtoon about a fund manager whose financial ruin leads to life among the homeless living underground at Seoul Station, followed by Love Guide for Dumpees (titled A Dramatic Night in Korean), a play-turned-movie about a man and woman who agree to be casual lovers but end up finding something more.
In 2016, Yoon was cast in the Korean remake of American television series The Good Wife. Yoon then played a disabled man in the film The Bacchus Lady, a bittersweet drama about an elderly prostitute helmed by E J-yong.
Yoon played a villain role in crime noir The Outlaws, which premiered in late 2017. He next starred in the thriller Golden Slumber, playing a friend of the protagonist tasked to chase him down.
In 2019, Yoon starred in Mal-Mo-E: The Secret Mission, which depicts two men who travel the country to collect Korean words in secret in 1910. The same year, he was cast in the fantasy action film Fluid Renegade.
Yoon is the youngest of two siblings in his family. He describes having been very embarrassed as a young boy when he ran errands for his mother and elder sister, such as buying tampons for them at the store.
In February 2013, Yoon's agency confirmed his relationship with Lee Ha-nui, a South Korean actress, model, classical musician, gayageum player and a beauty pageant titleholder. On June 11, 2020, it was confirmed that both have broken up.
Yoon and three friends opened the first cereal café bar in Seoul called Midnight in Seoul which has since become a franchise. The initially small venture became popular on social media within South Korea due to its popularity with K-pop idol singers who frequented the place and posted pictures online. Entertainer and 2AM member Jo Kwon became president of the franchise while Yoon and his friends remain the owners and still run the original café.
|2004||Flying Boys||Kang Min-jae|
|2008||Lovers of Six Years||Kim Jae-young|
|The Moonlight of Seoul||Kim Seung-woo|
|2009||The Executioner||Oh Jae-kyung|
|2013||One Perfect Day (short film)||Un-cheol|
|Hello My Love|
|2014||Red Carpet||Park Jung-woo|
|2015||Minority Opinion||Yoon Jin-won|
|A Dramatic Night||Yoo Jung-hoon|
|2016||The Bacchus Lady||Do-hoon|
|2017||The Outlaws||Jang Chen|
|2019||Mal-Mo-E: The Secret Mission||Ryu Jung-hwan|
|2004||My 19 Year Old Sister-in-Law||Kang Seung-jae||SBS|
|2007||Crazy for You||Kim Chae-joon||SBS|
|2008||Who Are You?||Cha Seung-hyo||MBC|
|2010||Road No. 1||Shin Tae-ho||MBC|
|2011||The Greatest Love||Yoon Pil-joo||MBC|
|High Kick: Revenge of the Short Legged||Yoon Kye-sang||MBC|
|2013||Potato Star 2013QR3||Brain surgeon Kye-sang
(cameo, episodes 9–10)
|2014||Beyond The Clouds||Jung Se-ro/Lee Eun-soo||KBS2|
|2016||The Good Wife||Seo Joong-won||tvN|
|2021||Crime Puzzle||Han Seung-min||tvN|
|2000–2001||g.o.d's Babysitting Diaries||MBC|
|2010||It Travel: Yoon Kye-sang in Turkey||TrendE|
|2012||Real Mate in Australia: Kye-sang and Se-in Go to Sydney||QTV|
|One Table with Yoon Kye-sang||O'live|
|2013||Stars into Travel: Yoon Kye-sang's Tasteful Journey
Awards and nominations
|2004||SBS Drama Awards||Excellence Award, Actor in a Drama Special||My 19 Year Old Sister-in-Law||Nominated|
|2005||41st Baeksang Arts Awards||Best New Actor||Flying Boys||Won|||
|26th Blue Dragon Film Awards||Best New Actor||Nominated|
|4th Korean Film Awards||Best New Actor||Nominated|
|2007||Andre Kim Best Star Awards||Best Star Award, Male category||N/A||Won|||
|SBS Drama Awards||Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries||Crazy for You||Nominated|
|2008||2nd Mnet 20's Choice||Hot Movie Star Actor||The Moonlight of Seoul||Nominated|
|2011||48th Grand Bell Awards||Best Actor||Poongsan||Nominated|
|32nd Blue Dragon Film Awards||Best Actor||Nominated|
|7th Mnet 20's Choice||Hot Drama Star||The Greatest Love||Nominated|
|MBC Entertainment Awards||Excellence Award, Actor in a Sitcom/Comedy||High Kick: Revenge of the Short Legged||Won|||
|MBC Drama Awards||Best New Actor in a Miniseries||The Greatest Love||Nominated|
|2014||KBS Drama Awards||Best Couple Award with Han Ji-hye||The Full Sun||Nominated|
|Netizen Award, Actor||Nominated|
|2017||6th Korea Film Actors Association Awards||Popular Star Award||The Outlaws||Won|||
|2018||9th KOFRA Film Awards||Discovery of the Year||Won|||
|27th Buil Film Awards||Popular Actor Award||Nominated|
|14th Jecheon International Music & Film Festival||JIMFF Star Award||Won|||
- Choi Young-ju (April 6, 2021). "윤계상, 저스트엔터테인먼트와 전속 계약". nocutnews (in Korean). Retrieved April 6, 2021.
- "Inside actor Yoon Kye-sang". Kpop Herald. July 27, 2015.
- "다섯 남자 god의 귀환…" (in Korean). MBC. November 29, 2014.
- Kim, Hee-ju (August 4, 2011). "Actor Yoon Kye-sang's Song Picks". 10Asia.
- <연합인터뷰>윤계상, "나도 미쳐보고 싶었다". Yonhap News (in Korean). July 21, 2004.
- Cho, Jae-hyon (March 19, 2010). "Yoon Kye-sang's Leftist Remarks Cause Online Stir". The Korea Times.
- "윤계상, SBS 드라마서 모터사이클 레이서 변신". Sports Chosun (in Korean). July 4, 2004.
- "My 19-year-old Sister-in-law". Korea Tourism Organization. Retrieved June 21, 2013.
- "god Is Dead". The Chosun Ilbo. October 12, 2005. Archived from the original on September 12, 2012.
- "윤계상 god 탈퇴 이유 "연예인 관두려고" 재합류 심경 고백". The Chosun Ilbo (in Korean). May 8, 2014.
- "A musician in the South Korean army". The Standard. April 27, 2006.
- "god 출신 윤계상, 춘천 102보충대 입소" [g.o.d. member Yoon Kye-sang enters 102nd Reserves at Chuncheon]. The Chosun Ilbo (in Korean). December 7, 2004.
- "Yoon Kye-sang Receive Citations". KBS Global. January 20, 2005.
- 윤계상 제대...내년 초 방송 복귀 [Yoon Gye-sang discharged...will resume appearances next year]. SBS News (in Korean). December 6, 2006.
- 윤계상, 과거 군시절 사진공개..'볼살통통' [Yoon Kye-sang's old army photos go public ... 'fat cheeks']. Money Today (in Korean). June 25, 2011.
- "Rain Voted Most Likely to Dominate 2007". The Chosun Ilbo. January 2, 2007.
- 예비역 윤계상 '사랑에 미치다' [Reservist Yoon Kye-sang Crazy in Love]. Hankook Ilbo (in Korean). January 25, 2007.
- Lee, Hyo-won (January 15, 2008). "Actors Kim, Yoon Gossip About Love". The Korea Times.
- Kwon, Mee-yoo (March 4, 2008). "Different Bodies for Different Souls in Who Are You". The Korea Times.
- Lee, Hyo-won (April 28, 2008). "Moonlight Shines on Seoul's Nightlife". The Korea Times.
- Oh, Jean (June 10, 2009). "MBC's new series a Triple threat". The Korea Herald.
- Lee, Hyo-won (October 22, 2009). "Executioner Looks at Death Row". The Korea Times.
- "2010.10.29 NOW PLAYING". Korea JoongAng Daily. October 29, 2009.
- Mudge, James (May 18, 2011). "Come, Closer (2010) Movie Review". Beyond Hollywood.
- Han, Sang-hee (June 21, 2010). "Road No. 1 to feature war, love, comradeship". The Korea Times.
- "With a star-studded season, let the fall TV tussle begin". Korea JoongAng Daily. June 24, 2010.
- Kwon, Mee-yoo (May 3, 2011). "TV soap to peek into celebrity life". The Korea Times.
- Lee, Hyo-won (July 14, 2011). "Filmmaking is not about money: Kim Ki-duk". The Korea Times.
- "A low-budget movie with high hopes". Korea JoongAng Daily. June 22, 2011.
- Lee, Hyo-won (July 27, 2011). "Poongsan: a director's mission impossible". The Korea Times.
- Kim, Hee-ju (July 15, 2011). "INTERVIEW: Actor Yoon Kye-sang – Part 1". 10Asia.
- Kim, Hee-ju (July 15, 2011). "INTERVIEW: Actor Yoon Kye-sang – Part 2". 10Asia.
- Kim, Hee-ju (July 15, 2011). "INTERVIEW: Actor Yoon Kye-sang – Part 3". 10Asia.
- Kim, Heidi (June 28, 2011). "Yoon Kye-sang to star in sitcom High Kick 3". 10Asia.
- Sunwoo, Carla (March 1, 2012). "Yoon Kye-sang to star in action extravaganza". Korea JoongAng Daily.
- Ho, Stewart (July 19, 2012). "Yoon Kye Sang Plays Developmentally Disabled Imposter in New Movie". enewsWorld.
- Lee, Tae-ho (July 20, 2012). "Yoon Kye-sang scores 1st lead role in new family comedy pic". 10Asia.
- Ho, Stewart (November 5, 2012). "Yoon Kye Sang Pulls Out of Acting Class and in Talks to Join Minority Opinion". enewsWorld.
- "'Real Mate in 호주' 윤계상, 권세인 두 남자의 리얼한 여행이야기". KW News (in Korean). July 25, 2012.
- Sunwoo, Carla (August 23, 2012). "Yoon Kye-sang to take on cookery". Korea JoongAng Daily.
- Choi, Eun-hwa (November 1, 2012). "All Five Members of g.o.d Come Together for Yoon Kye Sang on One Table". enewsWorld.
- "Ex-member cooks up a g.o.d reunion". Korea JoongAng Daily. November 2, 2012.
- Lee, Eun-sun (March 15, 2013). "KIM Jee-woon, to Direct Second Way to Nature Film Project". Korean Film Council.
- "Yoon wraps newest movie". Korea JoongAng Daily. November 18, 2013.
- "Yoon Kye Sang's Chinese Movie 'Hello My Love' Gets Over 100 Million Hits". enewsWorld. December 18, 2013. Archived from the original on February 21, 2014.
- Jeon, Su-mi (August 30, 2013). "Yoon Kye Sang Signs with Saram Entertainment". enewsWorld.
- Park, Gyu-oh (September 3, 2014). "g.o.d. to hold encore concert on Oct. 25". The Korea Herald.
- Sohn, Ji-young (July 8, 2014). "g.o.d. makes grand return with new LP Chapter 8". The Korea Herald.
- Lee, Sung-eun (September 16, 2014). "After tour, g.o.d. plans concert encore". Korea JoongAng Daily.
- "G.o.d. announces digital single release". Korea JoongAng Daily. October 16, 2014.
- "Role in the 'Sun' for Yoon Kye-sang?". Korea JoongAng Daily. December 20, 2013.
- "Yoon Kye-sang, Han Ji-hye to Pair Up in New KBS's Drama". 10Asia. December 30, 2013.
- Jin, Eun-soo (September 25, 2014). "Director taps into own experience for adult film". Korea JoongAng Daily.
- Lee, Seung-mee (November 6, 2014). "Yoon Kye-sang seeks a life free from pressure". Korea JoongAng Daily.
- "Yoon Kye-sang is back in the movies". Korea JoongAng Daily. March 22, 2013.
- Kim, Yeon-ji (June 30, 2015). "Yoon still 'craves' acting". Korea JoongAng Daily.
- Choi, He-suk (June 15, 2015). "Actor Yoon Kye-sang to make comeback in action drama". K-pop Herald.
- Won, Ho-jung (December 3, 2015). "Herald Interview: Yoon Kye-sang on playing the ordinary man". The Korea Herald.
- "DRAMATIC ONE NIGHT Jumps into Production". Korean Film Biz Zone. March 17, 2015.
- "Yoon Kye-sang to return with 'The Good Wife'". Kpop Herald. April 14, 2016.
- "A social outcast's fight to survive". Korea JoongAng Daily. September 30, 2016.
- "Yoon Kye-sang headed to Berlin". Kpop Herald. February 11, 2016.
- "Don LEE and YOON Kye-sang Head to Crime City". Korean Film Biz Zone. March 14, 2017.
- "YOON Kye-sang Readies for GOLDEN SLUMBER". Korean Film Biz Zone. January 25, 2017.
- "YOON Kye-sang Confirmed to Star in MALMOI". Korean Film Biz Zone. February 9, 2018.
- "Yoon Kye-sang hopes to highlight forgotten history: In his latest film, the actor plays a scholar working on a hangul dictionary". Korea JoongAng Daily. December 22, 2018.
- "LIM Ji-yeon Joins YOON Kye-sang in FLUID RENEGADES". Korean Film Biz Zone. January 21, 2019.
- "Attack on TV Star Renews Old Fears". The Chosun Ilbo. February 21, 2008.
- "Yoon Kye-sang, Lee Honey come clean". Korea JoongAng Daily. February 23, 2013.
- "윤계상·이하늬 측 "최근 연인 관계 정리" 결별 인정[공식]". Ilgan Sports (in Korean). June 11, 2020.
- "Midnight in Seoul". Time Out Group. January 23, 2017.
- "전세계 시리얼 맛볼 수 있는 '시리얼 카페' 차린 연예인". JoongAng Ilbo (in Korean). May 2, 2017.
- Moon Ji-yeon (April 9, 2021). "[공식] 윤계상 '크라임 퍼즐' 출연 확정..빈틈無 매력남". sports.chosun (in Korean). Retrieved April 9, 2021.
- 윤계상, 사진작가로 변신...10월 말 터키행. Sports Chosun (in Korean). October 16, 2008.
- 윤계상, '스타 여행에 빠지다' 경북 풍류여행 소개한다. Xports News (in Korean). November 20, 2013.
- Kim, Soo-jin (May 20, 2005). '말아톤' '파리의 연인' 백상예술대상 대상 (종합) [Marathon, Lovers in Paris are Baeksang Arts Awards Grand Prize winners]. Star News (in Korean). Retrieved August 25, 2015.
- <디자이너 앙드레 김이 선정한 베스트 스타>. Yonhap News (in Korean). April 11, 2017.
- ""I Am a Singer" takes program of the year at MBC Entertainment Awards". 10Asia. December 30, 2011.
- "Top Star Awards for NA Moon-hee, LEE Jung-hyun, CHOI Min-shik and Hyun-bin". Korean Film Biz Zone. January 8, 2018.
- "1987 Tops Korean Film Reporters Association Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. February 9, 2018.
- "'JIMFF 어워즈' 윤계상·오종혁·손담비, 수상.."너무 감사하다"". Osen (in Korean). August 11, 2018.