Who is Park So Dam? “Parasite” star’s tough career

Park So Dam is still quite a new name to Korean audiences, even though she participated in many big film projects.

Until the success of “Parasite”, Park So Dam was the name that attracted the most attention due to her outstanding transformation. In this article, let’s find out more about this actress.

Who is Park So Dam?

Park So Dam (born September 8, 1991) is a South Korean actress. She came into popular recognition in the 2015 film “The Priests” and the TV series “Cinderella with Four Knights” (2016) and “Record of Youth” (2020). She achieved international fame for her role in the 2019 critically acclaimed Korean comedy thriller film “Parasite”, which won the Palme d’Or at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival and the Academy Award for Best Picture.

Park So Dam

Park So Dam’s brief biography

Real name: Park So Dam

Born: September 8, 1991

Hometown: Korea

Education: Korea National University of Arts

Occupation: Actress

Years active: 2013 – present

Agency: Artist Company

Instagram: sodam_park_0908

Park So Dam

When Park So Dam was in high school, she watched the musical “Grease” and developed an interest in acting. She is compared to Kim Go Eun because their faces are quite similar. It turns out that Park So Dam is Kim Go Eun‘s classmate. It quickly became a hot topic among netizens. However, Park So Dam‘s acting career was not as favorable as her friend’s.

Park So Dam’s career

Struggling in acting career, getting rejected 17 times

Her interest for acting came to Park So Dam during her high school years. It was her first time watching the famous musical Grease that sparked her passion for acting. 

Park So Dam

To become an acknowledged actress like she is today, Park So Dam has gone through plenty of difficulties and hardships. With a unique appearance that does not adhere to common beauty standards, she used to be continuously turned down. The number of rejects reached 17 times and made her almost want to give up.

Working her way up from small roles 

In 2013, the actress starred in 4 consecutive independent films. Most notable ones among them are Steel Cold Winter and Intoogi: The Battle of Internet Trolls. Despite only taking on small supporting roles, this was an important initial stepping stone to develop her career.

Park So Dam

In 2015, Park So Dam attracted much attention when she played a supporting role in Veteran – an action crime comedy written and directed by Ryoo Seung Wan. Veteran drew 13.4 million admissions and became one of the best-selling Korean movies of all time. Aside from being a box office hit, Veteran also won the Casa Asia Award at the Sitges Film Festival.

In 2016, Park So Dam returned to the small screen with the female lead role in Cinderella and the Four Knights. Park So Dam’s performance in this drama received positive reviews from the audience. She was nominated for Best New Actress at the 2016 KBS Drama Awards.

Park So Dam

Her breakout role in “Parasite”

In 2019, being cast in the critically acclaimed and award-winning movie Parasite brought Park So Dam‘s reputation to a new level. 

In Parasite, she plays the smart and brilliantly deceptive daughter Jessica/Ki Jung of the Kim Family. Park So Dam delivered a memorable performance thanks to her outstanding charm and acting skills. The scene where her character smokes a cigarette while sitting on top of the toilet during the flood is one of the most iconic scenes of Parasite. 

Park So Dam

Parasite drew 7.5 million admissions after 2 weeks of premiere in the middle of the pandemic, and became the highest-grossing May release of all time, breaking the record of Sunny in 2011 with 7.3 million admissions. The film also received 9.09 points from critics on Cine21 and 9.21 points from viewers on Naver, an almost perfect score. 

In 2020, Parasite made history by winning four awards at the Oscars, including Best Picture. Park So Dam once shared a funny story about how this historic win got her in trouble at the airport. Because there were 4 Oscar trophies, the security staff thought she was carrying weapons.

Park So Dam

Park So Dam and Record of Youth

Most recently, she participated in Record of Youth with Park Bo Gum. The actress attracts attention with her beautiful, gentle appearance and slender legs. This shows that she can change her style continuously in many different roles.

Park So Dam

With a cool appearance and acting talent, Park So Dam is expected to go even further in the future. Currently, Park So Dam also works as a photo model for magazines, attends a few events, etc.

Actress Park So Dam (Parasite) has cancer at the age of 30

On December 13, Korean media outlets reported that “Parasite” actress – Park So Dam is suffering from papillary thyroid cancer at the age of 30. Park So Dam was diagnosed with the disease during a normal health check, according to the management company, and had surgery as instructed by the doctor.

Park So Dam

Therefore, she will have time to rest to focus on recovering her health. Papillary thyroid cancer is a benign disease, it is also the most common cancer due to the main cause of radiation energy exposure. If detected early and treated in time, the patient can recover completely, prolong life by 20 years and even reach the life expectancy of normal people.


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