6 Things to Know About Lee Do-Hyun, a Rising Star in Korea's Entertainment Scene
Lee Do-Hyun’s star power is about to skyrocket into the stratosphere. Hot off his role as cucumber-cool monster fighter Eun-hyuk in critically acclaimed Netflix thriller Sweet Home and a memorable cameo as the younger version of the protagonist in Beyond Evil (which won Best Drama at this year’s Baeksang Awards), Lee is now the vaunted winner of the coveted Best New Actor award, a title that can only be claimed once in an acting career.
Other Best New Actor winners over the years have included Won Bin (2001), Lee Min-ho (2009) Ahn Hyo-seop (2020). To say that Lee is is a newly minted A-lister in good company would be an understatement. The 26-year-old good-looker’s resume is short but impressive, and his run has only just began. Here’s what you need to know about him.
1/6 He romanced IU in Hotel Del Luna
We first sat up and took notice of him in Hotel Del Luna, where he played IU’s lover from her ancient past, a dashing but ill-fated royal guard captain. He didn’t have that many lines, but he did enough to stick around in our memory long after the series had ended. Note to self: This guy looks good in period costume.
2/6 He stole scenes as the level-headed but cold Lee Eun-hyuk in Sweet Home
Yes, Song Kang’s face was the biggest on the poster, and he, too, was amazing in the hit monster thriller, but Lee Do-hyun was the unexpected scene-stealer in 2020’s Sweet Home. Many found his calm medical-student character with the intense eyes rather attractive, as he coolly handled things while chaos ensued. Did we mention he beat Song Kang (another star who’s about to be catapulted into the big time) to the Best New Actor award?
Related: Baeksang Arts Awards 2021: Full List of Winners
3/6 He proved that he wasn’t just eye candy in 18 Again
18 Again is the K-drama remake of Hollywood movie 17 Again, which starred Zac Efron as a 37-year-old man who finds himself back in his 17-year-old body. In 18 Again, Lee Do-hyun is a 37-year-old man with a crumbling marriage, family and career, who gets another chance at life when he’s miraculously transported back into his 18-year-old body. Lee was praised for his heartfelt performance, executed with gravitas, as a middle-aged man in a teen’s body.
4/6 He’s now flexing his acting chops as a romantic lead in Youth of May
The show premiered earlier this month, and sees Lee reunited with Go Min-si, who played his sister in Sweet Home. Guess they have good chemistry? Youth of May is set in 1980, during the infamous Gwangju Uprising. Lee plays a medical student and Go is a nurse, and they get caught up in a passionate romance. Initial reviews are promising, with the charismatic leads and retro-dreamy ’80s setting getting thumbs-ups.
Related: Kim Soo-hyun, Song Joong-ki and More: The Nominees For the 57th Baeksang Arts Awards
5/6 He’s a method actor who once broke up with his girlfriend to get into a role
Lee truly is passionate about acting, and secretly attended acting school even though his parents were against him becoming an actor. He has gone to great lengths to get into a role—including breaking up with his girlfriend in order to experience the pain of a break-up—as he was playing a character who had just lost the girl he loves. Let’s hope he doesn’t take his method acting to crazy extremes.
6/6 He and IU remained good pals, after starring in Hotel Del Luna together
The 28-year-old superstar sent Lee Do-hyun a food truck on the set of 18 Again (sending food trucks is how K-drama actors show their love and support for one another), and Lee sent one to IU on the set of her upcoming movie, Dream, which also stars Park Seo-joon. We can’t wait to watch that, as well as the great things to be expected next of Lee.
Related: From Goblins to Fox Spirits and Mermaids: 8 Fantasy K-Drama Characters We Love