Actress Park Shin Hye debuted early, back in 2003 when she turned 13 years old. So it may seem like she has always wanted to act — but that is actually not the case. Here’s the unusual story behind how she came to be the successful talent we now love and adore!
As a young girl from Gwangju City, Park Shin Hye dreamed of becoming a police officer — after experiencing a home burglary in which her parents lost all their cash. But her church-operated after school program teacher saw something else in her.
When the legendary vocalist Lee Seung Hwan and his agency Dream Factory Club shared audition ads in search of a young actress to feature in his upcoming music video, the teacher knew it was the perfect opportunity for Park Shin Hye. The teacher ended up submitting an old picture of Park Shin Hye that was taken in the neighborhood photo studio.
Not surprisingly — considering what a visual the young Park Shin Hye had been — she passed the preliminary round and then was asked to attend an in-person evaluation round held in Seoul. As a sixth grader from the outskirts, Park Shin Hye didn’t know much about the city traffic and arrived three hours late.
Fortunately, the evaluation was still on-going and Park Shin Hye was able to have her turn. Here, when the interviewers asked Park Shin Hye if she knew anything about Lee Seung Hwan, she answered no and told them that she listens to H.O.T. Lee Seung Hwan became intrigued by the pretty face with an attitude…
… and pushed to have her signed as a vocalist trainee at the Dream Factory Club. In 2003, Park Shin Hye made her very first appearance in Lee Seung Hwan’s “Flower” music video.
While Park Shin Hye continued training to become a vocalist, Lee Seung Hwan soon noticed that she showed more potential and interest in becoming an actress. He switched her over from singing classes to acting classes — and even nailed her a role in the 2003 SBS K-Drama Stairway to Heaven.
It seemed Park Shin Hye’s career as an actress was about to take off, with the drama becoming a local and international hit. Lee Seung Hwan, however, terminated his contract with Park Shin Hye at this point — as Dream Factory Club came to face extreme financial hardship. As the single most responsible person for Park Shin Hye’s future, Lee Seung Hwan found a suitable agency to which he transferred her.
At this agency, she then starred in the 2009 SBS K-Drama You’re Beautiful and rightfully claimed the title of a rising star. From here on, Park Shin Hye lined up her filmography with mega hit series like The Heirs, Doctors, and Memories of the Alhambra.
Now she’s one of the top Korean actresses to wow us with her skills and looks!
Park Shin Hye and Lee Seung Hwan may have parted ways but the two remained close from the very beginning. She still calls him “Uncle” and can often be seen rocking out at his concerts. Looks like Lee Seung Hwan deserves a big thank you from us for discovering this gem, right?