Here is the top 10 K-Pop idols with the most successful acting career.
As we know, there are many K-pop idols who have decided to expand into the acting field. Many other talented faces also participate in acting, but in this article, I will focus on 10 idols who have played the lead role many times in Korean film projects. In addition, these are also my top 10 favorite actors. Let’s see who they are!
Let’s start with Kim Seolhyun! Seolhyun is an idol debuted in July 2012 as a member of the girl group AOA. She has starred in many films such as The Great Battle, Memoir of a Murder, Gangnam Blues and recently appeared as a special guest in P1H.
She officially debuted as an actress in Gangnam Blues (2015) and had her 1st role in Seoyoung My Daughter in 2012. She also starred in other dramas such as Awaken, My Country: The New Age, Orange Marmalade and Ugly Alert. Moreover, Seolhyun also became one of the hottest reality show stars as well as commercial models in Korea.
I think Seolhyun’s acting is pure but a little bit monotonous. However, she is still a popular one, which is why she is constantly invited to participate in big projects.
Sooyoung (Girls’ Generation)
Sooyoung debuted in 2007 with Girls’ Generation, one of the top girl groups in Korea, from SM Entertainment of Big 3. Sooyoung took the lead role in Miss and Mrs. Cop, Memories of a Dead End and Hello Schoolgirl. She made her movie debut with Hello Schoolgirl in 2008, and got her 1st main role in Unstoppable Marriage (2007).
She also starred in many other TV series such as Run On, Tell Me What You Saw, Man in the Kitchen, Squad 38, My Spring Days, Dating Agency: Cyrano and The Third Hospital. Personally, I think the female idol’s most recent film, New Year Blues, is her best work as an actress. I also acknowledge Sooyoung’s efforts in constantly changing the type of role she gets in order not to be monotonous and stereotyped. However, her personality is quite playful, so she is still not good at playing deep roles.
T.O.P (Choi Seung Hyun – BIGBANG)
T.O.P is an idol from the “legendary” group Big Bang, which debuted in August 2008. Like Girls’ Generation, Big Bang is a very popular and talented group that has had a tremendous influence on young people and paved the way for other idols. The group was formed by “the big man” YG Entertainment.
T.O.P has played the male lead in Tazza: The Hidden Card, Commitment and 71: Into The Fire. He made his acting debut with I am Sam in 2007. T.O.P also starred in other K-dramas like Secret Message and IRIS.
It goes without saying that T.O.P is cool, which is why this BIGBANG member’s roles often have that image. I hope that if he acts in more movies in the future, he will refresh himself.
YoonA (Girls’ Generation)
Yoona – another face from Girls’ Generation – has starred in Exit, Confidential Assignment and the new movie Miracle. She debuted as an actress in Confidential Assignment in 2017, but her official acting debut was about 10 years ago through the TV series Two Outs in the Ninth Inning, which was broadcast in 2007.
YoonA also starred in many other dramas such as Hush, The King in Love, The K2, Prime Minister & I, Love Rain, Cinderella Man and You Are My Destiny. Although the female idol received a lot of criticism for her acting, I think YoonA did her best in the drama “Exit” (2019). In general, I think Yoona is too pretty, which is why her choice of roles are very limited. I would like her to try following the “ugly girl” motif. However, instead of turning into a beauty at the end of the movie, she should let viewers focus on her acting ability rather than her appearance.
Minho – the second male idol on this list – is a member of SHINee, another group from SM Entertainment. SHINee has been extremely popular since its debut in May 2008. Minho has starred in Korean films such as Battle of Jangsari, Illang: The Wolf Brigade and Derailed as well as his first movie Canola (2016).
The male idol first appeared in a drama called Pianist in 2010. He also participated in other films, including The Most Beautiful Goodbye, Somehow 18, Hwarang, To the Beautiful You and Salamander Guru and The Shadows.
Unfortunately, despite having a more successful career compared to other Kpop idols, he is put in the same situation as his colleagues due to his stereotypical roles. Being too hot is also a disadvantage here. Not to mention, Minho’s acting hasn’t improved much. However, when he plays a fun supporting role like the gay guy in Yumi’s Cell recently, I feel more comfortable than watching him playing the male lead.
Junho is an idol of JYP’s boy group 2PM, which was formed in September 2009. Junho has starred in films such as Homme Fatale, Memories of the Sword and Twenty. He made his movie debut with Cold Eyes in 2013 and this is also his first time taking on the role as an actor.
After that, he took the lead roles many times in dramas such as Confession, Wok of Love, Rain or Shine… Junho did a great job with different roles from humorous to serious ones. Personally, I like the comedy drama “Twenty” (2015) the most.
Lee Joon (MBLAQ)
Lee Joon is a member of boy group MBLAQ, which debuted in 2009. He has starred in Luck-Key, The Piper, Rough Play and is a voice actor in Train to Busan, Seoul Station.
Interestingly, Lee Joon actually started acting before becoming an idol, playing the role of young Rain in Ninja Assassin. He has not only acted in movies but also dramas including My Father Is Strange, Woman with a Suitcase, The Vampire Detective, Heard It Through the Grapevine, Gap-dong, IRIS2 and Jungle Fish 2.
Bae Suzy (Miss A)
Suzy first appeared on television through the audition program Superstar K and debuted under JYP’s girl group Miss A in July 2010. She has starred in Ashfall, The Sound Of A Flower and the upcoming movie Wonderland.
She started her career in cinema through the project Architecture 101 (2012) and her acting career started to pick up after the TV series Dream High, which aired in the same year. Suzy also starred in dramas like Vagabond, While You Were Sleeping, Uncontrollably Fond, Gu Family Book, Big and Start-up.
Suzy’s acting is still controversial, but I have to say that she is the one of the best Kpop idols who works hard to transform into different roles and experiment many genres of films. By this point, I think Suzy is already an actress. Perhaps, not many people remember her as a singer, right?
Im Siwan, a member of boy group ZE:A, made his debut in entertainment industry in 2010. Siwan is one of the most talented actors who has starred in popular films such as The Merciless, One-Line, A Melody to Remember and Boston 1947.
His first movie “The Attraction” (2013) was well received by viewers and his drama debut is Moon Embracing The Sun (2012). He has a long list of dramas that he played as the male lead such as Run On, Strangers from Hell, The King in Love, Triangle, Waiting for Love, Standby, Man from the Equator and Misaeng.
Lastly, we can’t ignore D.O (Do Kyung Soo), a member of boy group EXO debuting in April 2012. EXO is one of the idol groups with the many talented members who have dominated various fields. D.O is one of the members who decided to pursue acting.
D.O has a long list of films he’s been on like Unfornough, My Annoying Brother, Room No.7, Along with the God, Swing Kids as well as Underdog (voice actor). He also starred in dramas such as It’s Okay That’s Love, 100 Days My Prince and Be Positive. Unlike Minho from the same agency, D.O completely captivated viewers and shook off the title of an acting singer. I admit that he is a successful K-pop idol turned actor. Whenever D.O’s movie comes out, I watch it with peace in my mind without being afraid that it’ll be a bad work.