“Squid Game” Actress Jung Ho Yeon Opens Up About Her Emotional Journey From Model To Actress

“I should change my life.”

Jung Ho Yeon has become quite a hot topic these days since her acting debut with the incredibly popular Netflix K-Drama Squid Game. While many have discovered the talented actress through the drama, she actually has a thriving model career that started before her Squid Game.

| Netflix

Jung Ho Yeon has been modeling since the age of 16 and even placed second on Korea’s Next Top Model! So what made her want to start a career in acting? In her recent interview with W Korea, Jung Ho Yeon revealed her process of transitioning from model to actress.

Jung Ho Yeon in “Korea’s Next Top Model” | Onstyle

When asked about her modeling career, Jung Ho Yeon shared that she didn’t really have a lot of motivation for it and it eventually led her to a career in acting.

In fact, when I first started modeling, I had no motivation. When I was in middle school, I was like, ‘When you grow up, what do you have to do to make a living?’ After thinking about it, I started modeling. But it didn’t go well, at first. But it was fun. I wanted to do well, and I was always looking for the next step. I seem to be a person who always finds fun in a certain ‘process’ and uses that time as a driving force. So was the acting. There was no clear motive, but the motivation for acting seems to be scattered here and there. I spent a lot of time abroad alone, watched a lot of good movies, and read good books, which filled my empty heart. Then, suddenly, I had a desire to express it through acting.

— Jung Ho Yeon

Going into further detail about her “Empty heart,” Jung Ho Yeon admitted life as a model made her look at herself closely.

After all, modeling is a job that shows. I’ve posted this on Instagram before. ‘What would you think of the world I edited?’ In a way, Instagram is a space where I edit and show what I want to show. She takes pictures of her sparkling daily life as a model, such as wearing nice clothes and going to a good place, and eating good food. Of course, I am grateful and happy when people see it and like it. Sometimes I feel like I’m alive. But at some point, I thought, ‘Am I really this person?’ People like my shiny look, but to me, I’m a much different person than her.

— Jung Ho Yeon

Overall, her life as a model was busy and pretty lonely. Because she had so much alone time, Jung Ho Yeon shared that she used that time to read books or watch movies. Her hobbies ultimately sparked her interest in acting.

When I was working as a model in Korea, I didn’t have much time to spare, but there, I finally learned how to look back and relax. On holidays, I spent time alone at home watching a movie, reading a book, and contemplating. Now that I think about it, if I hadn’t had that time, I probably wouldn’t have been able to do acting. I relieved my loneliness with movies and books, and I had a strong desire to express what I felt through acting. So during the holiday season, I came to Korea and took acting classes.

— Jung Ho Yeon

It was when she turned 23 that she felt she needed a change of pace in life. While she worked hard in her modeling career, she felt she needed a new challenge.

When I turned 23, I felt as if I had been stabbed in the back. That why I packed my luggage for New York. Perhaps he was trying to escape reality. Of course, I wanted my career to grow, but I thought that I should change my life, and I should put myself in a difficult environment.

— Jung Ho Yeon

Finally entering her new acting management, Jung Ho Yeon unexpectedly received her first script and it was for none other than the script for Squid Game. Jung Ho Yeon mentioned that she was asked to make an audition tape immediately and, despite her limited experience, she decided to use everything she had in her to pass.

| Jung Ho Yeon in “Squid Game” | Netflix

Once passing her audition, Jung Ho Yeon was pretty flustered and confused about how she received such a huge role. Naturally, Jung Ho Yeon doubted her skills, but still gave her all!

I seem to have gotten my mind right. I’ve been thinking since then. ‘Okay, my acting is still lacking. Then let’s do what we can do now.’ After being organized like this, it was so much fun and happy to act.

— Jung Ho Yeon


Evidently, Jung Ho Yeon’s efforts and hard work totally paid off as both her performance and the drama itself turned out amazing! We can’t wait to see what’s in store for both model Jung Ho Yeon and actress Jung Ho Yeon!

Source: W Korea

Squid Game