10+ Korean Celebs Who Had Surprising Different Careers Before Becoming Celebrities

Not everyone dreamed of being a star from the beginning.

1. Seo Ji Seok – Runner

When he was in middle school, actor Seo Ji Seok was a gifted runner who won four gold medals by the time he was 16 years old. However, when he was 18 years old, he was struck by a car while he was crossing the street and was hospitalized for half a year. After he was discharged from the hospital, he was cast by a manager who saw him walking on the street.


2. So Ji Sub – Swimmer

So Ji-sub trained for 11 years to become a professional swimmer and even earned the bronze medal at the Korean National Games. He went into modeling only to meet his favorite hip-hop artist Kim Sung Jae but found that it was a good way to earn money.


3. Song Joong Ki

Actor Song Joong Ki represented Daejeon in a national-level short track speed skating competition. But while it seemed as if he could’ve gone pro, he suffered an injury during his first year of high school that ended his career before it could begin.


4. Han Chae Young – Figure Skater

During an episode of KBS‘s Happy Together 3, actress Han Chae Young revealed that she had trained to be a figure skater from when she was eight years old, up until high school. She explained that she quit her freshman year of high school because she didn’t see herself becoming a professional.


5. Song Hye Kyo – Figure Skater

Actress Song Hye Kyo also trained in figure skating, but stopped after middle school.


6. Won Bin – Car Mechanic

When he was young, he planned on becoming a caer mechanic, and graduated from a technical high school, where he studied car repair.


7. WINNER’s Jinwoo

When he was in high school, Jin Woo took a part time job as a pizza and chicken delivery person.


8. ASTRO’s Moonbin – Child Actor

Before he debuted as a member of ASTRO, Moonbin was a child actor, haven had a role in the iconic drama “Boys Over Flowers”.


9. Choa – Saleswoman

Before she joined FNC Entertainment, Choa was a saleswoman for IPTV bundled products, where she recorded good sales, even reaching #1 out of all employees. Using her salary of ₩5 million KRW ($4,418 USD), she trained and practiced even harder with the goal of auditioning for a girl group.


10. MYNAME Insoo – Ballet Teacher

Insoo was the ballet teacher for famous rhythmic gymnast Son Yeon Jae for 2 years. He also taught ballet to gymnast Shin Soo Ji, who personally requested lessons from him.


11. VIXX’s Ken – Lotteria

Ken worked part-time at the hamburger chain Lotteria for 9 months. When he guested on the show The Capable Ones, he was flustered when hamburgers came out on set but quickly gathered his composure to reveal that he knew exactly which hamburgers came from Lotteria.