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< Jang Dong Gun

Early Life and Education[edit]

Jang Dong Gun was born on March 7, 1972, he was raised and spent the majority of his entire childhood in Yongsan District, Seoul, he enrolled at the Korea National University of Arts School of Drama, although he studied for a few semesters he ended up dropping out of college to pursue an acting career.

Acting Career[edit]

His first big step into coming in contact with the entertainment business came for him in 1992 when he took part in a talent competition that paved for him the way to establish a career in the entertainment business. He became extremely popular and very well know in South Korea in the 1990s because of his appearances in a series of successful television series. He caught the attention of viewers in his first foray into acting in the MBC hit Our Heaven, he became after a household name after appearing in the drama for the television network and he would end up appearing over the span of the decade in several more television series for the network.

After enjoying success on the small screen he got his first break on the big screen and it came with the 1997 romantic melodrama Repechage. In 1999, he starred in the critically acclaimed Nowhere to Hide, it paved the way for Jang Dong Gun to appear the following year in the action film Anarchists, the film was entirely filmed on location in China, the film has the distinction of being the first Korean and Chinese co-production in Korean film history, the film was highly successful critically and at the box office, it made Jang Dong Gun more known all across Asia, specifically in China where he became extremely popular and it elevated his status as an actor.

In 2001, he broke his typecasting as the charming leading man in romantic comedies in previous roles on the big and small screen by taking the lead role in Kwak Kyung Taek's action film Friend, the film became a nationwide phenomenon, it became at the time the highest grossing South Korean film of all time, it was critically acclaimed as well, Jang Dong Gun's leading performance as the tough-talking gangster earned him several acting accolades and strong praises from film critics.

In 2002, he appeared in the highly successful action blockbuster 2009 Lost Memories, he then starred in a lead role in the independent film The Coast Guard. In 2004, Jang Dong Gun took the lead role in the action drama war epic Taegukgi, the film was a huge success at the South Korean box office, and it received huge praises by film critics not only in South Korea but also by film critics worldwide.

He followed up his award-winning role in Taegukgi by appearing the following year in Chen Kaige's Chinese epic fantasy film The Promise, the film received a mild response by film critics, he later was cast in the same year in the action film Typhoon opposite Lee Jung Jae and Lee Mi Yeon, the film was a success at the box office and received positive feedback by film critics and audiences alike.

He would spend the following 4 years working in his Hollywood film debut in the fantasy action film The Warrior's Way, he starred alongside co-stars Geoffrey Rush and Kate Bosworth, the movie was a box office bomb and it received negative reviews by film critics. The film was plagued with all sort of problems in post-production and even distribution, leaving Jang Dong Gun a bit disenchanted by the whole ordeal.

In 2011, he starred in the wartime action drama film My Way, the film was one of the most expensive Korean films ever made but when it was released it became a box office bomb, although the Asian co-production also starring Japanese actor Odagiri Joe and Chinese Actress Fan Bing Bing failed to attract viewers it received praise by film critics.

In 2012, he made his small screen comeback in Kim Eun Sook]]'s romantic comedy-drama A Gentleman's Dignity, the television series was praised by critics, and it received high viewership numbers over the course of its run. He then starred in the Chinese film Dangerous Liaisons, based on the eighteen century novel of the same name by French author Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, the film diverged considerably from the source novel by setting the story in 1930s Shanghai.

Jang Dong Gun starred as a hitman in the 2014 action film No Tears for the Dead, Jang Dong Gun prepared himself for his role extensively for a four-month period at an action film school and at a combat training center in the United States, the film underperformed at the box office, but Jang Dong Gun's acting and the film as a whole received a lot of praise by film critics.

In 2017, he appeared in the action crime thriller film V.I.P., alongside co-stars Kim Myung Min, Lee Jong Suk and Park Hee Soon, the film was a box office success but it received its fair share of controversy over its depictions of violence against women.

He appeared in 2018 in a couple of films, first, in the revenge thriller film Seven Years of Night and in the period zombie action film Rampant. He then made his small screen comeback after five years in the Korean remake of the highly popular American legal drama series Suits. The drama series was a success with critics and audiences alike, and his chemistry with co-star Park Hyung Sik received a lot of attention and praise.

Jang Dong Gun is set to star in tvN's historical fantasy drama Arthdal Chronicles, it will be released in 2019.

Personal Life[edit]

Jang Dong Gun has been married with Love Wing Love Song co-star Ko So Young since May 2, 2010, their first child, a son, Jang Min Joo, was born on October 4, 2010, and a second child, a daughter, was born on February 25, 2014.