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Korea’s Flower Boy

  • (Photo courtesy: Group Eight)

All eyes are on the model-turned-actor as he takes on A role that’s sure to propel him to stardom.

At a red carpet for a local awards show, 22-year-old actor Lee Min-ho tripped and almost fell flat on his face.

Lee, however, is no falling star. In fact, he is Korea’s biggest name to come out of the entertainment scene this year following his appearance as the male lead in Boys Over Flowers.

The Korean drama is the newest version of the popular Japanese manga Hana Yori Dango to hit the television screens. The drama has helped launch careers of Asian stars, especially those acting the male lead, a role that was previously played by Taiwan’s Jerry Yan (Meteor Garden) and Japan’s Jun Matsumoto (Hana Yori Dango). Yan went on to become one of the first pan-Asian idols while Matsumoto went on to do the movie version, which was a hit across the region.

Lee is a model-turned-actor like Yan and fans of the franchise have even pointed out his physical resemblance to the Taiwanese heartthrob.

This is Lee’s biggest break so far and playing Goo Joon Pyo (Dao Ming Si in the Taiwan version and Domyoji Tsukasa in the Japanese version) has assured him that he won’t be languishing in anonymity for long.

Lee debuted in 2005 in the drama Love Hymn, appearing as a minor character. His first lead role came in 2007 in Mackerel Run, an 8-part high-school drama.

Playing the rich spoiled brat in Boys Over Flowers could be anyone’s trump card, a surefire way to stardom and Lee is sowing the fruits of that now, with many endorsements including Levi’s, LG Telecom, Samsung Anycall, Trugen, Market O, Cadillac CTS, Samsung, Cass beer and Dunkin’ Donuts.

Aside from acting, Lee has also received an offer to do a digital single as part of an advertisement for Cass beer. This more or less resembles the career path that the Taiwanese cast took, leading them to form a boy group named F4 after the same name in the drama.
In a recent interview, Lee displayed a tenacity that he would need once he becomes more famous. “Victory is not as important as possessing a fighting spirit. My motto is to not give up even if I fail. I think to have that attitude is just beautiful.” (The Korea Herald/ AsiaNews)

MySinchew 2009.03.29



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