Known as the “Museum Without Walls,” Gyeongju boasts numerous historical and archaeological sites highlighting the city’s rich heritage. The Korean city was the former capital of the Silla Kingdom, which ruled Korea from the 7th to the 9th centuries. Not only is it famous for its historical story, but some prominent South Korean celebrities were born in Gyeongju, a city in North Gyeongsang Province.
Korean Celebrities Born and Raised in Gyeongju
Gyeongju has produced many renowned personalities from diverse fields. Here are some of Korean celebrities born and raised in Gyeongju.
Cho Jae-hyun (born June 30, 1965) is a South Korean film, stage, and TV actor. He is commonly dubbed “director Kim Ki-duk’s persona” since Cho has starred as leading and supporting characters in almost all films directed by Kim.
Cho Jae-hyun was born in Gyeongju on June 30, 1965. He and his family lived in a poor neighborhood on the slopes of a hill until his father succeeded in his restaurant business in the Jongno area, Seoul.
Starting his acting career in the 1990s, Cho Jae-hyun established himself as a distinguished actor by winning several awards, including Best New Actor (Theater) at the 1991 Baeksang Arts Awards, Best Supporting Actor at the 1999 SBS Drama Awards and KBS Drama Awards, Daesang at the 2014 Gwangju International Film Festival, and more.
Unfortunately, his career stopped in 2018 after the accusation of sexually assaulting actress Choi Yul in February 2018. Later, in July 2018, a woman known as “Miss A” also filed a lawsuit against Cho Jae-hyun for KRW300 million in damages from an alleged sexual assault. The Seoul Central District Court ruled against her in January 2021.
Born on July 24, 1970, in Gyeongju, Kim Sang-ho is a renowned South Korean actor. He appears in film, television, and theater. With his experience in the acting industry, it is not surprising that Kim Sang-ho was nominated for various awards. He even won Best Supporting Actor at the 2007 Blue Dragon Film Awards for his performance as Hyuk-soo in “The Happy Life,” and at the 2012 KBS Drama Awards for his performance as Bang Jung-bae in “My Husband Got A Family.”
Lee Joon-kyung, better known by his stage name Dok2 (pronounced Dokki), was born in Gyeongju on March 28, 1990. Dok2 is a South Korean rapper, record producer, and co-founder of now-defunct Illionaire Records.
Started his career at 12, Dok2 has achieved various accomplishments at a young age. In 2014, Dok2 was a judge on the third season of the TV rap competition “Show Me the Money,” where he and The Quiett were the producers behind winning contestant iKon Bobby. They again participated in the show’s fifth season and were the producers behind Superbee, who came in third place. Dok2 again participated in Season 6 as part of a producer team with Jay Park (AOMG and H1GHR Music).
Lee Sunmi was born on May 2, 1992, in Iksan but was primarily raised in Gyeongju. She started her career as a Kpop girl group Wonder Girls member in 2007, and left the group in 2010 to pursue her solo career.
She released her debut solo single in 2013 and is known in the Kpop industry for creating her own musical style called “Sunmi-pop.” With the unique characteristics of her songs, Sunmi has garnered a vast number of MIYA-NE (Sunmi fandom) all across the world.
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