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Lee Dong-wook (이동욱)

Updated: Nov 5, 2023

New fans can’t help but wonder why Lee Dong-wook's lips are tinted cherry red. They are so red that his k-drama Bubblegum (2015) had to include a scene where the female lead asks if his character wears lip tint. In reply, he wipes his lips with his hand, saying, "They're always like that." Fans may giggle when they find out the reason why—possibly due to “a lot of heat he has in the body”—according to an oriental doctor he consulted.

GwenchaNoona | Actor Profile: Lee Dong-wook


Birthday: November 6, 1981

Facebook: 이동욱

Lee Dong-wook is arguably best-known for his role as the Grim Reaper in the fantasy-romance Goblin (2016). His bromance with the male lead spilled so much off-screen that Gong Yoo, who rarely grants interviews, appeared as his first talk show guest years later. If that wasn’t enough uwu, his chemistry with Yoo In-na made so many hearts flutter that it spun off a rom-com led by the couple.

"My Girl" K-drama Poster (left to right): Lee Dong-wook, Lee Da-hae, and Lee Joon-gi

Fame is no stranger to him as he earlier starred in My Girl (2005), the drama that spawned at least four Asian remakes and catapulted him to Hallyu star status. As Goblin also became popular, achieving the fifth highest rating in Korean cable TV history, he received overwhelming attention and love from his fans. Unfortunately, when it ended, the public attention eventually waned. He felt the withdrawal symptoms and admitted that he lost his confidence.

Photo from SBS/Wikipedia

Months later, he started to heal and plan for his next projects, carefully excluding fantasy roles to avoid being typecast. He portrayed the role of an ER doctor in the medical drama Life (2018). The following year, he starred as a workaholic lawyer in the rom-com Touch Your Heart with Yoo In-na and a dentist in the thriller Hell Is Other People. In 2020, he decided to break his own rule, accepting a fantasy drama Tale of the Nine-Tailed where he was cast as a nine-tailed fox living as a civil servant in the present time.

Being multi-talented, Lee Dong-wook became co-emcee of the talk show Strong Heart (2012 - 2013), participated in the reality show Roommate (2014 - 2015), and hosted the audition/reality show Produce X 101 (2019). To celebrate his 20th career anniversary, he hosted his own talk show, Wook Talk (2019) with Gong Yoo as his first guest. He has come a long way from a grand-prize-winning model in 1999 to a talented actor and host.

His recent projects include the insanely entertaining police k-drama Bad and Crazy (2021) with Wi Ha-joon, the star-studded rom-com movie A Year-End Medley (2021) opposite Han Ji-min, and its spin-off series A Year-End Medley: Extended Version (2022). He recently starred in season two of Tale of the Nine-Tailed entitled Tale of the Nine Tailed 1938 (2023) alongside Kim So-yeon.

He will release his romantic film Single in Seoul opposite Im Soo-jung on November 29, 2023.

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