About one of the many talents of Idols: Acting

by Helen Bosch
Astro members and actress kim sae ron standing arm in arm wearing school uniforms white backgroundAstro members and actress kim sae ron standing arm in arm wearing school uniforms white background

Korean idols are usually not only singers, but also dancers, models and actors, because music videos, for example, often resemble three-minute short films.

Some idols also show their skills in "K-dramas," as Korean series are often called.

Especially idols who have no acting experience in series often make their "acting debut" in web dramas, whose episodes are much shorter than those of typical Korean series and are therefore popular with fans who don't have much time to watch TV or don't want to get directly involved in over 16 hours.

The boy band Astro even produced their own web drama before their debut in 2015, where fans could get to know the members who played themselves. In the series "To be Continued", the band travels through time to the day before their debut performance.

EXO also has its own web drama called "EXO Next Door." Chanyeol, D.O., Baekhyun and Sehun play a fictional version of themselves. The four members of the popular band move into a house one day next door to the female lead, who is a big fan of EXO. She is hired as a cleaning lady and gets involved in a love triangle with Chanyeol and D.O..

k-drama imitation poster

In addition to web dramas, Idols of course also star in typical Korean dramas, whose 16 to 30 episodes go on for a full hour.

These include, for example, series that are about idol bands such as "Imitation" or "Entertainer".

Imitation revolves mainly around the three-member rookie girl group "Tea Party" on their way to success and the famous boy group "Shax". They are joined by the boy group "Sparkling", who are still hoping for their big break, and "La Lima", a solo artist who is dominating the charts with Shax. All involved fight their way through the tough show business and also get to know the dark side of success. Of course, a secret relationship or two also develops. Shax and Sparkling are played by members of SF9, Ateez and Jun from U-Kiss, among others. Jiyeon from T-ara embodies La Lima, while "Tea Party consists of Lim Na Young, formerly Pristin, and Kim Minseo, among others.

Shax, Tea Party, Sparkling & La Lima with the joint song "Your Sign".

Entertainer is about a formerly successful manager who loses everything and ends up in prison. After his release, he meets the talented student Jo Haneul and decides to make him famous. In the course of the series, he forms the four-member band "Entertainer" with Haneul as the lead singer. The series stars Hyeri from Girls Day, Minhyuk from C.N.BLUE and L.Joe, formerly of Teen Top.

Quite a few idols are also building a serious acting career alongside their music career and regularly star in K-dramas, which is why they are even more known to some series fans as actors and less as singers. Below we introduce you to a few of the idols who have made a name for themselves as actors:

D.O. / Do Kyungsoo (EXO)

Do Kyungsoo of EXO made his acting debut in 2014 as a supporting role in the film "Cart" and also released a soundtrack for it.

In the same year, a supporting role in the K-drama "It`s Okay, That`s Love" followed, for which his bandmate Chen sang a soundtrack. In 2015, D.O. was nominated for awards for both his role as a psychopath in the series "Hello Monster" and his role in "Cart".

Later, he starred in the thriller comedy "Room No.7," the film "Swing Kids" set in a South Korean prison camp during the war, and alongside Kim So Hyun in the romantic film "Pure Love," among others. Then in 2018, he got his first leading role in a K-drama: "100 Days My Prince." The series was a commercial success and is one of the most successful dramas in the history of Korean cable television.

Kyungsoo has already confirmed a starring role in the upcoming drama "Secret" for this year and has also just released "Empathy", his first solo album. So fans can probably look forward to a lot more from the idol in the future, who can express his emotions with his songs as well as his acting.

IU/ Lee Ji Eun

k-drama moon lovers poster iu lee ji eun

Lee Ji Eun debuted at the young age of 15 under the name "IU" and gained national fame at the latest in 2010 with her single "Good Day".

Shortly after, she began her acting career with a supporting role in the K-drama "Dream High" in 2011, followed by leading roles in a series of dramas such as the historical fantasy romance "Moon Lovers" in which Hae Soo, played by IU accidentally travels to a time when a king still rules over South Korea, then called Goryeo. Hae Soo encounters the king's many sons one by one and must fight not only for love but also for survival in the unfamiliar time.

In her latest series, "Hotel Del Luna," IU embodies Jang Man Wol, the manager of a very special hotel: the guests are exclusively ghosts who cannot yet cross over into the afterlife because unfinished business is holding them back. Jang Man Wol and her employees are ghosts themselves, and while they help their guests take care of their business, they are confronted with their own stories.

You can order the official soundtrack of Hotel Del Luna, which includes songs by NCT`s Taeyong, SNSD`s Taeyeon and IU himself, here in our store!

Bae Suzy

k-drama uncontrollably fond poster suzy

Suzy debuted in JYP Entertainment's girl group "Miss A" in 2010 and began her acting career like IU in 2011 in the teen drama "Dream High," in which she played the lead role Go Hye Mi. The series revolves around six students who learn to sing, compose and dance at "Kirin High School" in order to later become famous as singers. In addition to Suzy, the students are portrayed by Kim Soo Hyun, IU, Eunjung of T-ara, and Taecyeon and Wooyoung of 2PM. One of the teachers is even played by Park Jin Young, the founder of JYP Entertainment! Suzy won the award for "Best New Actress" for her role in Dream High, and together with Kim Soo Hyun for "Best Couple" at the KBS Drama Awards.

Due to its massive success, a second season of Dream High was released in 2012 starring Jay B and Jinyoung (Got7), Jinwoon (2AM), Jiyeon (T-ara), Hyolyn (Sistar), Ailee, Kang Sora and Park Seo Joon. Park Jin Young returned as a teacher.

Dream High was followed by leading roles for Suzy in "Big," "Gu Family Book" and "Uncontrollably Fond”. The latter is about a producer who is supposed to make a documentary about top star Shin Yoon Jong, her former classmate and friend.

In 2017, Miss A disbanded. Since then, Suzy has released two solo albums and starred in several films and three other dramas. Because of this, many fans may now know her more as an actress. You can find the official soundtrack to "Vagabond", a drama in which Suzy plays a spy, in our store!

k-drama true beauty ost album details

We could go on and on with the list of idols who have built successful acting careers. Astro's Eunwoo, SHINee's Minho, Got7's Jinyoung, Infinite's Kim Myung Soo, f(x)'s Krystal, BTOB's Yook Seungjae, SNSD's Seohyun, and 2PM's Taecyeon are just a few of the names that also belong to it.

As has already become clear in this article, the official soundtrack albums for the popular series often include songs by well-known bands or individual members and, increasingly, photo cards and other extras. So they are the perfect addition to your collection! soundtracks can also be found in our store and we are constantly trying to expand our range.

Which idol would you like to see in a series or movie? What soundtrack would you like to see on your shelf? Let us know in the comments!

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