To be where he is today, Joo Ji Hoon had to overcome some serious obstacles.
Just last year, Joo Ji Hoon returned to the Korean big screen with “Gentleman” that opened at third place at the Korean box office. In the movie, Joo Ji Hoon showed off his impressive performance that lived up to reputation as a capable actor of Korean cinema.
However, before affirming his place as a top Korean star, Joo Ji Hoon has gone through some major obstacles in life that were thought, at one point, would bring his career down for good.
Almost losing his career over a drug-use scandal
Born in 1982, Joo Ji Hoon started gaining recognition as the Crown Prince Lee Shin in “Princess Hours” in 2006, starring alongside Yoon Eun Hye. The moment the series reached pan-Asian stardom, actor Joo was highly sought after despite being only a rookie in the industry.
Before his career with filming, Joo Ji Hoon was a runway model because of his impresssive height, slim body, aloof expressions and the distinct “Korean” monolids.
After “Princess Hours,” Joo Ji Hoon strived to work more on TV and movie projects. However, things took a shift when the actor was arrested for illegal drug use in 2009 along with 15 others for suspicion of being a part of an illegal drug chain supply.
On June 23rd, 2009, Joo Ji Hoon was trialed in court and received a sentence of 6 months in prison, 1 years in probation and 120 hours of social services. He was also fined 360.000 won.
In light of the verdict, fans sent an appeal to court and the actor’s lawyer also believed the sentence was not fair to Joo Ji Hoon and that the information at hand might be wrong and blown out of proportion.
Sadly, in the end, Joo Ji Hoon still had to take that sentence. In 2010, the actor did his military services where he and Lee Joon Gi joined the army musical “Voyage of Life.” He finished his miliary duty in November 2011.
The scandal dealt a serious blow to the actor, his repuation and his career. Added two years of abscence due to military duty, Joo Ji Hoon’s image started to fade in the mind of the public.
However, Joo Ji Hoon still kept his acting dream alive. In January 2011, Joo Ji Hoon signed with KeyEast Entertainment when it was headed by Bae Yong Joon. He left a strong impression with “I am the King,” “Marriage Blue,” “Confession,” “Mask,” “Medical top team,” and “The Treacherous.” From 2019 to 2021, Joo Ji Hoon appeared alongside big names such as Kim Hye Soo in “Hyena” and Jun Ji Hyun in “Jirisan.”
“Noisy” romance with the “sexy symbol” of Kpop, Ga In
In the romance department, Joo Ji Hoon is often embroiled in relationship controversies, partly because of his handsome looks.
He was first caught up in a dating rumor with Yoon Eun Hye after their chemistry on-screen in “Princess Hours.” Fans started “shipping” the two actors but they both kept quiet of the matter.
Afterwards, he was rumored to be in a relationship with Shin Min Ah after their collaboration in “The Naked Kitchen” in 2009, starting from his praise of the actress’ beauty. However, it only stopped at fans’ rumors and the two themselves never spoke up of any relationship.
Joo Ji Hoon only went public with Ga In, a member of Brown Eyed Girls. In 2014, he appeared Ga In’s M/V “Fxxk U” and performed intimate scenes with the singer. At the time, Ga In’s agency admitted that the two were dating.
However, after three years of dating, they split up and seemingly had a peaceful breakup. Nonetheless, in 2017, at the time, when T.O.P was suspected of using drugs, Ga In posted on her SNS and supposedly reminded the audience of the actor’s “ugly past”: As you all may know, I’m the girlfriend of a previous junkie. His friend offered me marijuana. Yes, I almost gave in, since I wasn’t in the right mental state.” While no direct names were mentioned, fans knew who she was referring to. Soon after, her choice to throw her ex under the bus tainted her image in the public eye.
After his relationship with Ga In, Joo Ji Hoon has not gone public with anyone else. At 41, he is still single and does not show any inclination towards marriage. Previously, the actor shared he was afraid of getting married because he had never hard good things about itfrom those around him.