From Top Model to K Drama Heartthrob: Celebrating Nam Joo Hyuk's journey on his birthday

It's Nam Joo Hyuk's birthday and what better way to celebrate than to chart his incredible journey so far!
From Top Model to K Drama Heartthrob: Celebrating Nam Joo Hyuk's journey on his birthday
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Happy Birthday, Nam Joo Hyuk! The Korean heartthrob turns 27 years old (28 in Korean age). The talented Hallyu Star was born in Busan, South Korea. In his school days, he dreamt of being a basketball player and played on the school team for three years. However, a fatal injury cut short his budding basketball career and he veered towards performing arts. After moving to Seoul, he won the contest Top Model which was sponsored by K-Plus. Soon after Nam Joo Hyuk signed an exclusive contract under the modelling agency. He began his career with modelling and soon moved to doing acting roles.

One of the most popular young stars of Korea, Nam Joo Hyuk has played some amazing roles in his career so far. From playing a charismatic swimmer in Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo, to a Water God in The Bride of Habaek,  a traditional Hanja teacher in The School Nurse Files and an awkward coding genius in Start Up, he's chosen roles beyond plain vanity. Today on his Birthday, we document his journey so far.

The Idle Mermaid

In his debut drama, Nam Joo Hyuk essayed the role of Park Dae Bak aka 'Big'. He is a computer genius, who grows up comfortably in a big house but due to circumstances, he is cut-off by his parents.

Who Are You: School 2015

Nam Joo Hyuk portrays the quiet star-swimmer Han Yi An, who has a crush on his friend Go Eun Byul (Kim So Hyun). He is a loyal friend to Go Eun Byul and starts to starts to question the identity of Eun Byul (who is actually Eun Bi in disguise), but as time goes by, he falls for Eun Bi unknowingly.

Cheese In The Trap

Though, not in a lead role, Nam Joo Hyuk as Kwon Eun Taek was a scene-stealer. His character is shown to be friends with Hong Seol, played by Kim Go Eun and Jang Bo Ra, played by Park Min Ji. He harbours a secret crush on Bo Ra too.

P.S: Do watch out for the scenes in which he plays basketball like an ace.

Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo

Nam Joo Hyuk portrayed the 13th prince Baek Ah/Wang Wook in this ensemble saeguk drama. Over time, the drama has achieved cult status among Kdrama fans. The other actors in this drama are IU, Lee Joon Gi, Kang Han Neul, Baekhyun, Kim Ji Soo among others.

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo

In this career-defining drama, he portrayed Jung Joon Hyung, a mischievously adorable star swimmer. He suffers from a trauma that causes a hindrance in his career, albeit temporarily. His playful chemistry with Bok Joo, played by Lee Sung Kyung was loved by audiences too.

P.S. Do watch out for his amazing swimming scenes.

The Bride of Habaek

Also called The Bride of the Water God. Nam Joo Hyuk portrays The god of the Land of Water and the rightful heir to the throne of the Realm of the Gods. He comes to Seoul to obtain sacred stones and ends up meeting Yoon So Ah, played by Shin Se Kyung.

The School Nurse Files

In this Netflix special comedy-fantasy superhero mini-series, Nam Joo Hyuk portrays  Hong In Pyo, a Hanja teacher with a special energy field protecting him from jellies. He joins Ahn Eun Young, a school nurse in solving mysterious happenings in the school.

Start Up


Easily one of the best dramas of last year, Nam Joo Hyuk played Nam Do San, an adorable coding genius who dreams of enrolling his startup, Samsan Tech in SandBox, the Korean equivalent of Silicon Valley. Unbeknownst to him, he is also Seo Dal Mi(Bae Suzy)'s childhood love. Nam Joo Hyuk's chemistry with Bae Suzy was well appreciated and loved by fans and the drama became a huge hit!

ALSO READ: Answer some random questions and we will tell you which Nam Joo Hyuk character you are

Which is your favourite Nam Joo Hyuk K-Drama/film? Share your thoughts with Pinkvilla in the comments section down below!