ICYDK: Thus far, Ju Ji Hoon has impressively only been cast in main roles for K-dramas. As a fresh-faced rookie back in 2006, the actor hit the ground running by top-billing the hit series Princess Hours for his acting debut. The rest, as you can probably imagine, is history. Now one of South Korea’s most prominent leading men, Ji Hoon’s star shines brighter than ever as he continues to come out with one highly-acclaimed drama (and movie) after the other.
Whether he first caught your eye way back when, or you’re just now falling for his charms in Kingdom or Jirisan, we know exactly what you need.
Ahead are 10 fun facts you need to know about Korean actor Ju Ji Hoon.
1. He’s a Taurus.
Ji Hoon was born in Seoul, South Korea on May 16, 1982.
2. He rose to fame for his role in “Princess Hours”.
Before becoming the sought-after Hallyu star that he is today, Ji Hoon landed his first-ever lead role in 2006 with the iconic hit K-drama Princess Hours. The romantic comedy also served as both his acting debut and his breakthrough project after it found widespread success across Asia, contributing to the growth of the Korean Wave. From then on, Ji Hoon has only been cast for leading man roles in TV shows, including Prince Lee Chang in Kingdom, Yoon Hee-jae in Hyena, and Kang Hyun-jo in Jirisan.
3. He’s a certified movie star.
If you didn’t notice, Ji Hoon actually has more movies under his belt rather than K-dramas. He’s often recognized for them as well during awards season. His works on Asura: The City of Madness (2016), Along With the Gods (2017-2018), The Spy Gone North (2018), and Dark Figure of Crime (2018) have particularly brought him several trophies and nominations, including a Best Film Actor nomination at the 55th Baeksang Arts Awards.
4. He once suggested to shave his head for a movie.
Ji Hoon has dedicated himself to various characters throughout his prolific career in both TV shows and big screen projects. One of many is Kang Tae-oh for the aforementioned award-winning crime drama Dark Figure of Crime. Playing a convict who confesses to having enacted seven more murders prior to his arrest, Ji Hoon personally asked the director if he could shave his hair off and shoot the film with no makeup on. In an interview with The Korea Times, he elaborated, “Thinking about Kang, who complains, 'even after killing seven, no inmate shows me due respect,' I thought that after he was imprisoned in the jungle of heinous criminals, he must have wanted to look strong.”
5. He’s musically inclined.
Apart from his undeniable acting chops, Ji Hoon can also sing and play the guitar. Not only that, but he’s quite capable on the piano as well. He learned the latter instrument after taking classical piano lessons for his 2012 drama Fine Fingers, where he portrayed a genius pianist named Yoo Ji-ho.
Below is a video of him playing Yiruma’s Kiss the Rain during a fan meeting.
6. He once starred in his now ex-girlfriend’s music video.
Ji Hoon dated singer and actress Son Ga In for three years. Before they officially got together, the two grew close while filming the music video for her 2014 song Fxxk U, which made headlines for its racy themes and sensitive subject matter. They eventually announced their breakup through their agencies in July 2017.
7. His love for bike riding came in handy while training for “Jirisan”.
In order to build up his physical strength for Jirisan, where he plays rookie ranger Kang Hyun-jo, Ji Hoon shared that he increased his stamina by riding his favorite bike and taking long walks across Jirisan National Park. “It was hard to film in the mountains because the ground wasn’t flat. Just standing alone made me very tired,” explained Ji Hoon in an interview. “Scenes where I climb the mountain, hike in heavy rain, and fall over were all required for the shoot. You can only do these things when you’re physically strong.”
8. He sometimes shows clips of his works to prove his identity.
Ji Hoon hilariously admitted the fact during a guesting for tvN’s Yoo Quiz on the Block. According to the actor, he often writes unemployed or “traveler” when flying abroad if he’s not working on any project at that moment. When he did once write “actor” on his official document, he had to show a clip of one of his projects to prove he was the real deal. He shared a similar incident in the US, recalling, “I was caught once in the United States when I blocked a one-way street and I used the movie Along with the Gods to prove my identity.”
9. He has a signature pose.
Instead of the usual finger heart that Korean actors and idols love doing, Ji Hoon has his own signature pose when caught on camera. If you notice in his photos, the actor often has his arm up with both his thumb and pinky fingers sticking out.
10. You can follow him on Instagram.
For more personal content from Ji Hoon, fans can follow him on his official Instagram account @_jujihoon.
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