Lee Byung-hun

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Lee Byung-hun
Lee Byung-Hun in 2013.jpg
Born(1970-07-12) July 12, 1970 (age 44)
Seoul, South Korea
NationalitySouth Korean
OccupationActor Dancer Singer
Years active1995–present
AgentBH Entertainment
Spouse(s)Lee Min-jung (m. 2013)
Korean name
Revised RomanizationI Byeongheon
McCune–ReischauerRi Pyŏnghŏn
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For the medical professor, see Lee Byung-heon.
This is a Korean name; the family name is Lee.
Lee Byung-hun
Lee Byung-Hun in 2013.jpg
Born(1970-07-12) July 12, 1970 (age 44)
Seoul, South Korea
NationalitySouth Korean
OccupationActor Dancer Singer
Years active1995–present
AgentBH Entertainment
Spouse(s)Lee Min-jung (m. 2013)
Korean name
Revised RomanizationI Byeongheon
McCune–ReischauerRi Pyŏnghŏn

Lee Byung-hun (Korean: 이병헌; born July 12, 1970) is a South Korean actor and martial artist, best known in the U.S. for starring in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009), G.I. Joe: Retaliation (2013) and RED 2 (2013). He also starred in Joint Security Area (2000), A Bittersweet Life (2005), The Good, the Bad, the Weird (2008), I Saw the Devil (2010), Iris (2008) and Masquerade (2012).

Lee, along with Ahn Sung-ki, are the first Korean actors to imprint their hand and foot prints on the forecourt of Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, Los Angeles.


Lee made his debut in the television drama Asphalt My Hometown after auditioning in a KBS talent audition in 1991.[1] He continued to act in a string of various television dramas until he made his big breakthrough in 2000 with Joint Security Area directed by Park Chan-wook. The film broke the box office record and became the highest grossing Korean film at the time.[2] Lee played a border-guard soldier and won Best Actor at the Pusan Film Critics Awards for the role.[3]

In 2001, his popularity continued to climb when he played the lead alongside Choi Ji-woo in the melodrama Beautiful Days. In 2003 he received the Grand Prize at the SBS Drama Awards and Best Actor at the Baeksang Arts Awards for his role in the poker drama All In.[4]

From 2005 he focused on film, earning critical acclaim for his performance in A Bittersweet Life directed by Kim Ji-woon which was screened out of competition at the Cannes Film Festival.[5] Lee was nominated for Best Actor at the Blue Dragon Film Awards and Grand Bell Awards, and won at the Chunsa Film Art Awards, Baeksang Arts Awards and the Korean Association of Film Critics Awards.

He reunited with director Kim Ji-woon in The Good, the Bad, the Weird, taking on his first villain role.[6] The film was screened out of competition at the Cannes Film Festival.[5] The following year he appeared in I Come with the Rain opposite American actor Josh Hartnett and Japanese actor Takuya Kimura. He then made his Hollywood debut as Storm Shadow in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, also starring Channing Tatum and Sienna Miller.[7]

Lee returned to television in late 2009 in the espionage action thriller Iris as a secret agent who finds himself at the center of an international conspiracy. It was one of the most expensive shows ever produced with filming locations in Hungary, Japan as well as South Korea. [8] It became one of the highest rated dramas of 2009 and his performance earned him the Grand Prize at the KBS Drama Awards and Best Actor at the Baeksang Arts Awards.[9]

In 2010 Lee starred in I Saw the Devil with Choi Min-sik, his third collaboration with Kim Ji-woon, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. His portrayal of the intelligence agent won him the Grand Prize at the Baeksang Arts Awards.[10]

In 2013, he reprised his role as Storm Shadow in G.I. Joe: Retaliation.[11][12] On June 23, 2012, Lee, along with Ahn Sung-ki, became the first Korean actors to leave their hand and foot prints on the forecourt of Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, Los Angeles. He was recognised as an emerging star in Hollywood for his role of Storm Shadow in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, and its sequel, G.I. Joe: Retaliation.[13] In October, he won Best Actor at the Grand Bell Awards for his dual role in the lavish period drama Gwanghae.[14] The film was a box office hit, becoming the 7th film in Korean history to surpass 10 million admissions.[15]

Lee co-starred in the American film RED 2 (2013), the sequel to the 2010 action-comedy hit RED, alongside Bruce Willis, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Helen Mirren, and John Malkovich.[16][17] In March 2014, Lee has been cast in a key role in the upcoming Terminator: Genisys.[18]

Other work[edit]

Lee formed a management company BH Entertainment which manages many actors including Han Hyo-joo, Go Soo, and Han Ji-min. He owns a shop BHNC which sells hats, scarfs and wallets.[19]

Lee Byung-hun most notably in the video game industry provided his likeness for the main character Wayne Holden, in the 2006 instant mega-hit Lost Planet: Extreme Condition, for the Xbox 360, PS3 & PC.

Personal life[edit]

Lee has a younger sister, Lee Eun-hee, who was Miss Korea in 1997. He graduated from Hanyang University with a major in French Literature and the Graduate School of Chung-Ang University with a major in Theater and Cinematography.

Lee dated his All In co-star Song Hye-kyo; they broke up in 2004. In his spare time, Lee Byung-hun practices taekwondo.[20][21]

Lee married actress Lee Min-jung on August 10, 2013 at the Grand Hyatt Seoul.[22][23][24][25] The couple had briefly dated in 2006, then resumed their relationship in 2012.[26][27][28][29][30][31][32][33]

On September 2, 2014, Lee made a report at Gangnam Police Station claiming that two women were blackmailing him by using a compromising video as leverage. Dahee and model Lee Ji Yeon were identified and they have since admitted to blackmailing the actor.[34]

The police revealed that they had issued arrest warrants for Dahee and Ji Yeon, and there is a possibility that they will be jailed for several years.[35]



1995Who Drives Me Mad?Lee Jong-du
RunawayLee Dong-ho
1996Kill the LoveLove
1997Elegy of the EarthPark Jong-man
1999The Harmonium in My MemoryKang Soo-ha
2000Joint Security AreaSgt. Lee Soo-hyeok
2001Bungee Jumping of Their OwnSeo In-woo
2002My Beautiful Girl, MariAdult Nam-woo (voice)
2004Everybody Has SecretsChoi Su-hyeon
Three Extremes - segment "Cut"Ryu Ji-ho
2005A Bittersweet LifeKim Sun-woo
2006Once in a SummerYun Suk-young
2007HEROKang (cameo)
2008The Good, the Bad, the WeirdPark Chang-yi, the Bad
2009I Come with the RainSu Dongpo
G.I. Joe: The Rise of CobraStorm Shadow
2010Iris: The MovieKim Hyun-jun
The InfluenceW
I Saw the DevilKim Soo-hyeon
2012Masquerade (Gwanghae: The Man Who Became King)King Gwanghae, Beggar Ha-sun[36]
2013G.I. Joe: RetaliationStorm Shadow
RED 2Han Jo-bae / Han Cho Bai
2015Memories of the SwordDeok-gi
2015Terminator: GenisysT-1000[37]
The InsidersAhn Sang-gu


1991Asphalt My Hometown
Flower That Never Wilt
1992Wild Sunflower
Days of SunshineChoi Hyung-man
Tomorrow LoveShin Bum Soo
1993The Sorrow of the SurvivorJa-myung
PoliceOh Hae-sung
1994The Fragrance of LoveKim Jun-ho
1995Asphalt ManKang Dong-joon
Son of WindChang Hong-pyo
1997Beautiful My LadyHwang Jun-ho
I Do
White Sand
1998White Nights 3.98Min Gyeong-bin
1999Happy TogetherSuh Tae-poong
Love Story - Story 1: SunflowerTae-sung
Sally is Back
Beautiful DaysLee Min-chul
2003All InKim In-ha
2009IrisKim Hyun-jun
2011Diplomat Kosaku KurodaJohn (cameo)


2006Lost Planet: Extreme ConditionWayne Holden
2013CGV 4DX trailerHimself[38]



YearAlbum Name
1999Lee Byung Hun - To Me


YearSingle Name
2008Itsuka (Someday)


2010"Stay"Iris OST
"Endless Road"Iris OST

Awards and nominations[edit]


  1. ^ http://www.yesasia.com/us/yumcha/lee-byung-hun-man-of-the-world/0-0-0-arid.209-en/featured-article.html
  2. ^ "Joint Security Area". koreanfilm.org. Retrieved 2010-10-28. 
  3. ^ http://www.korean-drama-guide.com/List-of-Pusan-Film-Critics-Awards.html
  4. ^ http://www.imdb.com/event/ev0001111/2006
  5. ^ a b "Festival de Cannes: A Bittersweet Life". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2011-01-01. 
  6. ^ Obsessedwithfilm.com
  7. ^ IESB.net - Movie News, Reviews, Interviews and More! - UPDATED WITH STUDIO CONFIRMATION - GI Joe Casting!
  8. ^ "Lee Byung-hun in Expensive Spy Drama Series IRIS". Beyond Hollywood. 
  9. ^ http://www.mb.com.ph/node/236653/gi-joe-
  10. ^ http://sundance.slated.com/2011/films/isawthedevil_sundance2011
  11. ^ Park Soo-mee. "Lee Byung-hun to Reprise 'G.I. Joe' Role". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  12. ^ "‘G.I. Joe 2′ Gets a Release Date; But Will We See The Cast Return?". The Film Stage. 
  13. ^ "Ahn Sung-ki, Lee Byung-hun to Leave Handprints in Hollywood". Chosun Ilbo. April 26, 2012. Retrieved May 4, 2012. 
  14. ^ "'Gwanghae' sweeps Korean Oscars". The Korea Times. October 31, 2012. 
  15. ^ Lee, Rachel (October 21, 2012). "'Masquerade,' 7th film to reach 10 million viewers". The Korea Times. 
  16. ^ http://collider.com/red-2-cathertin-zeta-jones-bruce-willis/165440/
  17. ^ Schwartz, Terri (2012-05-11). "'Red 2' Adds Catherine Zeta-Jones, Byung-Hun Lee". MTV News. Viacom. Retrieved 2012-05-11. 
  18. ^ Kitfirst=Borys (March 31, 2014). "'G.I. Joe,' 'Mad Men' and 'House of Cards' Actors Join 'Terminator: Genesis' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 31, 2014. 
  19. ^ http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SH/SH_EN_7_2.jsp?cid=1017491
  20. ^ "Byung-Hun Lee Talks Storm Shadow and "G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  21. ^ "Q&A - G.I. Joe Star Byung-hun Lee Explains Storm Shadow's Martial Arts Style". ACMTV. Retrieved 2012-05-13. 
  22. ^ Lee, Eun-ah (10 August 2013). "Lee Byung-hun, Rhee Min-jung Walk Down the Aisle Today". 10Asia. Retrieved 2013-08-11. 
  23. ^ Park, Si-soo (11 August 2013). "Movie star Lee Byung-hun is now taken!". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2013-08-12. 
  24. ^ Moon, Gwang-lip (12 August 2013). "Lee Byung-hun, Lee Min-jung wed". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-08-12. 
  25. ^ "Lee Byung-hun, Lee Min-jung to Honeymoon in Maldives". The Chosun Ilbo. 12 August 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-12. 
  26. ^ Cho Chung-un, Lee Woo-young (19 August 2012). "Top actors say they are dating". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  27. ^ Hong, Lucia (20 August 2012). "Lee Byung-hun, Lee Min-jung admit romantic relationship". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  28. ^ "Lee Byung-hun and Lee Min-jung Admit They're Going Steady". The Chosun Ilbo. 20 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  29. ^ Lee, Sun-min (6 June 2013). "Lee Byung-hun will marry Lee Min-jung". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2013-06-06. 
  30. ^ Suh, Hye-rim (5 June 2013). "Wedding of Lee Byung-hun, Lee Min-jung set for August". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2013-06-07. 
  31. ^ Kang, Jung-yeon (5 June 2013). "Lee Byung-hun, Rhee Min-jung to Marry August 10". 10Asia. Retrieved 2013-06-05. 
  32. ^ "Lee Byung-hun and Lee Min-jung to Wed in August". The Chosun Ilbo. 5 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-06-05. 
  33. ^ Cho, Suyoun (5 June 2013). "K-wave stars Lee Byung hun-Lee Min jung announce wedding in August". BNTNews. Retrieved 2013-06-05. 
  34. ^ "이병헌 협박 가수, 글램 다희에 "첫 경험이 언제냐"…가벼운 음담패설?". TV Daily. 3 September 2014. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  35. ^ "GLAM's Dahee named as one of Lee Byung Hun's blackmailers + arrest warrant issued". Allkpop. September 2, 2014. Retrieved September 2, 2014. 
  36. ^ "Lee Byung-hun to star in ‘The Prince and the Pauper’ remake" JoongAng Ilbo 15 November 2011. Retrieved 2011-11-23
  37. ^ "'Terminator: Genesis' Call Sheet Reveals Byung-hun Lee's Role As T-1000". screenrelish.com. Retrieved May 27, 2014. 
  38. ^ Lee Byung Hun in Absolute Cinema Experience

External links[edit]