The Korean drama industry has been gaining international attention and popularity. That is because of the releases of hit dramas like squid game which has thrown more light on the industry. This year many dramas have focused on portraying social issues such as bullying, friendship, and spreading awareness on mental health. The industry has also had many new faces who have received recognition among the actors as Hallyu Star( means Korean Celebrity who has influenced the entertainment industry) and k-drama fans. Here are 10 of the hottest rising K-drama actors that made our hearts swoon.
1. Song Kang
Song Kang debuted with a minor role as Baek Jin-Woo in The Liar and His Lover with co-actors such as Lee Hyun Woo and Red Velvet’s Joy. After that,he played supporting roles in 3 other dramas: ManWho Sets The Table, Touch Your Heart, and When The Devil Calls Your Name.The actor got his first leading role as Hwang Sun-oh in the 2019 Netflix original Love Alarm, which has two seasons based on a web toon. His popularity soared after the drama’s release,after which he starred in popular Netflix K-dramas Sweet Home and Nevertheless, in which he portrayed the role of ballet. He was also known as the son of Netflix,and the star has made many hearts swoon with the character he played in the dramas showing off his ethereal beauty that gained his attention from viewers.
2. Cha Eun Woo
Lee Dongmin, who professionally goes by his stage name Cha Eun-woo is a part of the Korean Idol group Astro. He initially made his debut with a minor role in the film “My Brilliant Life” and in the 2017 rom-com Hit the Top,after which he starred in several web series.He got to play the main lead in dramas such as My ID is Gangnam Beauty and Rookie Historian Goo Hae-Ryung. He started gaining international recognition following his role as Lee Su-Ho in True Beauty with co-actress Moon Ga-Young, where his irresistible charms captured the hearts of many. He became well known for his good looks and was nicknamed “Face Genuis” by the media.
3. Hwang In Youp
Hwang In Yeop started his career as a runway model in 2017, and in 2018 he made his acting debut in a web drama called W.H.Y: What Happened to Your Relationship, where he played the role of Gi Jae-young, one of the best friends of the male lead. He played a supporting role in the drama The Tale of Nokdu after he went on to play the main character in 18 Again and True Beauty. After starring in True Beauty as the charismatic “bad boy” Han Seo-jun, his portrayal of the character propelled him to fame. In 2022 he starred in the musical drama “The Sound of Magic” with big-name actor Ji Chang Wook. Hwang In Yeop has many fans that couldn’t resist the actor’s boyish charms despite being in his 30s.
4. Lee Do Hyun
Lee Do Hyun made his first acting debut in the drama“Prison Playbook”in a minor role as Lee Joon -ho, and he started gaining recognition for his talent for playing the supporting role of Go Chung-Myung in the drama Hotel Del Luna alongside IU. Do Hyun played his first lead role in the drama 18. Again as a younger version of Hong Dae-young, Sweet Home, where he played the role of Lee Eun-Hyuk. He also starred in the dramaYouth of May as Hwang Hee-Tae along with actress Go Min-Si. Lee Do Hyun was before called the “prince of supporting roles” and is now known as the leading star. Lee Do Hyun has been achieving success in the industry and continues to leave a great impression on the audiences through his roles.
5. Kim Seon Ho
Kim Seon-ho has been active in theater since 2009 and made his television debut in 2017,when he played the role of Sun Sang-Tae in the drama, Good Manager. Kim Seon Ho made notable appearances in the dramas Two Cops, 100 Days My Prince, and Welcome to Waikiki 2. He shot to fame for his role as Han Ji-Pyeong, a frank and seemingly cold character in Netflix’s series Start-Up in 2020, and subsequently, the heartthrob in the hit romantic comedy Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha, where he captured the hearts of many viewers. Seon Ho playing the character of Han Ji-Pyeong caught the eyes of many and gave everyone a severe case of “Second Lead Syndrome.”
6. Ahn Hyo Seop
Ahn Hyo Seop was born in Korea but spending half of his childhood living in Canada, he goes by his English name Paul Ahn. He made his acting debut in the drama Splash Splash Love and played a supporting role in Happy Home and Entertainer in 2016. He appeared in the dramas My Father is Strange and Queen of the Rings, from where he began getting more recognition. He also appeared in YouTube series Top Management alongside Cha Eun-Woo and then played the lead role in the drama Abyss and Dr. Romantic 2. He rose to international popularity with the recent drama Business Proposal, where he played the role of Kang Tae Mu alongside Kim Sejeong.
7. Ahn Bo Hyun
Ahn Bo Hyun was a model before entering the film industry in 2014 with his debut, where he played a minor role in Golden Cross. He played supporting roles for a few shows, the most notable being Descendants of the Sun, where he played Sergeant Im Kwang-Nam.Bo Hyun rose to popularity after taking on the role of Jang Geun-Won in Itaewon Class, a supporting character, and his portrayal of a mean bully caught the attention of many people. He took on his lead role in the Netflix crime-action show My Name in 2021 as the brave and charming detective Jeon Pil-do that made viewers fall for him. He was famous for starring in dramas like Yumi’s Cells and Military Prosecutor Doberman.
8. Lee Jae Wook
Lee Jae Wook made his debut in the drama Memories of Alhambra in a supporting role and later second-lead role in Extraordinary You by giving the viewers second-lead syndrome. In 2020, he finally played a lead role as Sun Woo-Joon in the Netflix drama Do Do Sol Sol La La Sol. He is now gaining popularity internationally for his lead role as Jang Uk in the drama Alchemy of Souls with actress Jung So-min.
9. Chae Jong Hyeop
Chae Jong Hyeop used to live in South Africa, where he worked as a model before returning to South Korea to pursue his acting career. He made his debut with a minor role in the drama Welcome hero- Tundra Show. He starred in many web series like Between Friends and No Bad Days. He also appeared as supporting characters in many shows such as Come and Hug Me, Hot Stove League, and Sisyphus: The Myth. His first lead role was in Nevertheless, where he played the role of a chef and received the nickname potato boy in the drama. He also starred in the sports romance drama Love All Play and started getting attention for his adorable look.
10. Kang Tae Oh
Kang Tae Oh is a member of the actor group surprise, and he made his debut with the web drama After School: Lucky or Not in 2013.He has been in the acting industry for almost a decade and starred in dramas like Doom at Your Service, The Tale of Nokdu, and Run On.The actor shot to international fame for his role as Lee Jun-ho in the Netflix drama Extraordinary Attorney Woo alongside Park Eun-bin. The show has taken audiences by storm for its compelling story line, unique characters, and importantly for shining a positive light on autism. He is praised for his role and has become the latest heartthrob of Korean dramas