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Kim Jae-wook / Kim Jae-uck (김재욱)

Updated: Apr 2

Some Catholic fans questioned their faith when Kim Jae-wook donned a priest's garb in OCN's supernatural thriller The Guest (2018).

GwenchaNoona | Actor's Profile: Kim Jae-wook

Photo from HanCinema

Birthday: April 2, 1983 Instagram:

Kim Jae-wook was born in Seoul, but when his journalist father was assigned to Japan, he lived in Tokyo until he was seven and became fluent in Japanese. He returned to South Korea, joined a band and, at 17, he became a model.

He drew strength from his own life experience and different art forms to enrich his roles. In 2002, he debuted as a band member in the MBC drama Ruler of Your Own World. He was immersed in modeling for the next five years before getting the role of a half-Japanese cook in the hit MBC rom-com series Coffee Prince (2007). His Japanese-speaking heartthrob character gained him fans in many Asian countries. He then became a lead, a gay chef, in his first film Antique (2008), where he won Best New Actor. Post-military service, he made use of his Nihongo skills for his portrayal of a Japanese noble, the husband of Son Ye-jin's Princess Deokhye, in the critically acclaimed historical movie The Last Princess (2016).

He later played a serial killer in Voice (2017), an exorcising priest in The Guest (reuniting with Coffee Prince castmate Kim Dong-wook), and a first-time rom-com lead in Her Private Life (2019). Behind the camera, he created My Margiela, a five-episode series on the Belgian fashion designer Martin Margiela.

Keeping his musical roots, he became a vocalist and guitarist of Walrus, a modern rock band that he himself put together in 2009. He played the titular role in the rock musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2011) before enlisting in the military. Together with Jo Jung-suk and Kim Sung-kyu, he was triple-cast in the musical Amadeus (2018) as the genius Mozart.

In his KBS2 rom-com series Crazy Love (2022), he portrayed a math company CEO opposite Krystal Jung.

Most recently, he made a short but memorable cameo in the Prime Video k-drama Death's Game Part 2 (2024) as the eighth reincarnation of Seo In-guk's character.

He will star alongside Lee Jae-wook and Jo Bo-ah in the Netflix historical melodramatic series Hong Rang.

Fans, regardless of religion, believe in Kim Jae-wook's versatility as an actor, who brings both authenticity and hotness to any role.

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