Believe it or not, 15 years have already passed since the first episode of My Name Is Kim Sam-soon aired. Yes, the show is only a year younger than Millie Bobby Brown.
In hindsight this international hit, although not without its faults, was actually groundbreaking in the K-drama territory. It showcased a crass female character who doesn't fit the ideal physical standards way before the inclusivity movement gained momentum, did the riveting let's-pretend-to-be-a-couple plotline before it was popularised by To All The Boys I've Loved Before and, to this date, is one of the few Asian dramas who left its female protagonist without a neat happy ending with her love interest; rather it closed on an ambivalent note with Kim Sam-soon wondering about her future. The show's success signalled a change in how 30-something single women are depicted in dramas — from pitiful cautionary tales to multilayered heroines who don't need a makeover montage to be worthy of love and recognition. If not for Kim Sam-soon, there will be no Yoon Se-ri (Crash Landing On You).
Because of its massive popularity, the show had reruns in Japan, Thailand and even had a local remake in the Philippines. My Name Is Kim Sam-soon also became the launching pad of its cast's careers with its leads becoming household names in the industry. So, where are they now? In the spirit of celebrating the show's 15th anniversary, let's check in on them!
Kim Sun-a is living her best life
Much like her eponymous character, Kim Sun-a is still as vibrant as ever. Secret Boutique, her latest series, just finished airing. It's a thriller about under the table negotiations of the rich and powerful. Sun-a plays Jenny Jang, the owner of a clothing store that serves as a front for the secret meeting place of the inner circle. Meanwhile, she looks like she's been travelling in her downtime; she visited Bali last December, eating delicious food and just living her best life.
Hyun Bin is still the leading man
By now, Hyun Bin has established himself as the leading man. From playing opposite Park Shin Hye in Memories of the Alhambra to starring in the ever-popular Crash Landing on You, he proves that his acting skills are versatile and his charisma timeless. Most recently, he's been tapped to be the face of Philippine telecommunications company Smart. He was also previously an ambassador of Filipino clothing brand Bench. Oh and by the way, in case you don't know, he also built his own agency which produced new-blood talents such as Stephanie Lee and Lee Jae-wook.
Jung Ryeo-won is now a social media fashion icon
While she played the second lead in My Name Is Kim Sam-soon, Ryeo-won eventually went on to have starring roles in many films and movies and taking home numerous awards. But aside from her career as an actress, she's also become known as a fashion icon and graced the pages of Elle Korea and Harper's Bazaar. It seems like she's become tight-knit with other South Korean fashionistas like Irene Kim and Jessica Jung, too.
Daniel Henney is still busy with Big Hero 6
Despite not knowing how to speak his mother's native language, Korean-American Daniel Henney still managed to make a mark during his appearance in My Name Is Kim Sam-soon. He captured countless hearts with his killer looks. He then went on to act in several American films and series including playing Agent Zero in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, becoming a series regular in Criminal Minds and eventually landing the role as the voice of Tadashi Hamada in the still-airing Big Hero 6.
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