Kim Ji Won, Park Shin Hye, Yoo In Na, and Lee Sun Bin trained to become singers, but they eventually followed the acting paths.
According to the South China Morning Post, the way many Korean actors and singers entered the entertainment industry and stumbled into their current professions was quite unexpected, without any planning in advance. Their childhood dream jobs could be totally different from what they’re doing right now, such as BTS’s V who wanted to become a farmer, or Cha Eun Woo who aspired to work as a lawyer.
Meanwhile, before pursuing the acting path, some popular Korean drama actresses underwent serious training periods to debut as K-pop singers. The sudden change in career direction also caught them off guard.
Kim Ji Won
Kim Ji Won is famous for her role in the drama Descendants of the Sun, but few people know that she originally had the stage name “JessicaK” and used to be the background vocalist for singer Younha. Prior to her acting career, Kim Ji Won had many activities in singing, dancing and even playing the piano with the desire to become a singer.
However, she suddenly changed direction when director Jang Jin saw her great potential in acting. Jang Jin invited the 1992-born female star to play a role in the movie Romantic Heaven (2011). This role was a turning point in Kim Ji Won’s career.
According to the South China Morning Post, the motion picture marked Kim Ji Won’s successful debut and became a springboard for her to further break through. After Romantic Heaven, she continuously took on important roles in hit dramas such as The Heirs, Fight For My Way, Mr. Sunshine, and Lovestruck in the City.
Park Shin Hye
Most viewers mistakenly thought that Park Shin Hye stumbled into the entertainment industry when she starred in the drama Stairway to Heaven, but her first gig was actually a role in the MV of singer Lee Seung Hwan. At a young age, Shin Hye went through training to become an idol, instead of an actress like she is now.
As reported by Soompi, the group Epik High revealed that Lee Seung Hwan once asked them to produce a song for Park Shin Hye alone, but eventually the group kept the song to themselves. The track “Fly” later became a massive hit.
In 2003, when she switched over to acting, Park Shin Hye achieved huge success with her role in the series Stairway to Heaven. During her guest appearance on the talk show Taxi, the actress admitted that she regretted giving up the music background that not everyone could have.
Yoo In Na
Yoo In Na signed a trainee contract with YG Entertainment at the age of 17. She spent 11 years honing her singing and dancing skills before breaking into the acting world with her first role in High Kick Through The Roof. Following that, she made a name for herself in the public eye as Kim Sun/Sunny in Guardian: The Lonely and Great God.
Participating in the show Happy Together, In Na shared her memories of her trainee days. She said that one of the trainees’ main concerns was to prepare thoroughly for the tests, and that fortunately, In Na always did well, often being named among the most appreciated trainees.
“I was invited to join a 4-member girl group,” In Na said. However, after the positive effect from High Kick Through The Roof, she decided to become an actress.
Lee Sun Bin
Lee Sun Bin, star of The Uncanny Counter, used to be a trainee in a music company for 3 years. She is also a former member of the group JQT.
The appearance of Lee Sun Bin in the show “I Can See Your Voice 3” has piqued the interest of Korean fans. The 27-year-old idol received numerous compliments on social media for her excellent singing and dancing abilities.
Lee Sun Bin, on the other hand, considers acting to be her only guideline. She has starred in a number of movies and television series, including Criminal Minds and Mission: Impossible. In an interview with Sports Chosun, Lee Sun Bin expressed no regrets about giving up her singing career.