K-rush of the Week: Kim Min-jae
Updated: Nov 1, 2022
Maybe it’s the wholesome boy-next-door vibe or his sweet smile, but it’s easy to forget that this multi-talented actor began as a rapper and stage performer. In fact, he nearly debuted as an idol. As Real.be (his rapper name), Kim Min-jae was one of the first trainees in CJ&M and trained in the prestigious Seoul Performing Arts High School. He was even a contestant in the fourth season of Show Me the Money!.
As an actor, his first foray in television was joining Kang Tae-oh in Forever Young, a show jointly produced by South Korea and Vietnam. Cameo roles then followed until he broke out in the 2016 medical drama Dr. Romantic as nurse Park Eun-tak. He then began work in movies, starring in 2018’s Love Sling.
More supporting roles followed until he joined the cast of Flower Crew: Joseon Marriage Agency as one of the leads. Later, he flexed his romantic chops as the main man in Dali and the Cocky Prince.
Currently, Kim is the lead in the period comedy Poong, the Joseon Psychiatrist.
Do You Like Brahms? (2020)
Kim Min-jae stars as Park Joon-young, a talented pianist who comforts Song Ah (Park Eun-bin), a violinist who has entered music school a bit later than her peers. The two introverts eventually find themselves drawn to each other, setting the stage for a sweet and quiet romance.
Kim Min-jae and Park Eun-bin would eventually go on to win the Best Couple award in both the KBS and SBS Drama Awards that year.
Flower Crew: Joseon Marriage Agency (2019)
Kim Min-jae is Ma Hoon, a member of the talented Flower Crew: Joseon Marriage Agency. Their latest challenge is to transform a commoner into a noblewoman so the current king Lee Soo can wed her. But can they actually turn a simple girl into someone fit for royalty, or will the crew just risk their lives for nothing?
In this loose interpretation of the French novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses by Pierre Choderlos-de-Laclos, Kim Min-jae is Lee Se-joo, a spoiled rich kid who often hangs out with his best friend, the equally rich and spoiled Kwon Shi-yun (Woo Do-hwan). Life seems to be an endless string of parties and shopping for the 1-percenters, until Kwon takes on a silly bet to seduce the ordinary Eun Tae-hee (Red Velvet’s Joy). Now that he’s falling for her for real, Lee takes it upon himself to knock some sense back into his best friend, and fights to keep the status quo.
Dr. Romantic 1 & 2 (2016, 2020)
Kim Min-jae earned his first Baeksang Arts Awards acting nomination, as well as an SBS New Star award for his role in this well-loved medical drama. He plays Park Eun-tak, a competent and upright nurse who was inspired to enter the medical field by the brilliant Kim Sabu (Han Suk-kyu). Dr. Romantic is so popular that a third season is in the works, though it remains to be seen if we’ll get to meet Nurse Park again!
Dali and the Cocky Prince (2021)
Kim Min-jae turns on his boyish charm as Jin Moo-hak, a cocky owner of a restaurant chain in Dali and the Cocky Prince. Impeccably dressed and incredibly successful, Moo-hak still cannot hide his nouveau riche upbringing, nor his lack of artistic education. He falls head over heels in love with sophisticated art enthusiast Kim Dali (Park Gyu-young). Together, they discover the fine art of loving and being loved.
Poong, the Joseon Psychiatrist (2022)
Kim Min-jae plays the titular character in this adaptation of the Lee Eun-so novel Joseon Psychiatrist Yoo Se Pung (조선 정신과 의사 유세풍).
Things should be going all right for the gifted physician Yoo Se-poong until he gets expelled from the court due to the machinations of a scheming minister. Stripped of his royal duties, Yoo finds himself working in the small Gyesu village where he meets a grumpy old doctor (Kim Sang-kyung) and a virtuous widow (Kim Hyang-gi). With the help of these two deeply empathetic characters Yoo grows from being a physician to someone who can “heal the heart.”