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‘Squid Game’ star Jung Ho-yeon becomes first Korean featured on Time100 Next list

  • “Squid Game” star Jung Ho-yeon, 28, was named one of the Phenoms of Time’s  “TIME100 Next” this year.

  • The magazine’s special issue was released on Wednesday.

  • “I think Hoyeon is still fighting every day – against her fame, the expectations, and the jealousy of her success, as well as her own desires,” Emmy-winning “Squid Game” director Hwang Dong-hyuk said in support of Jung’s inclusion in the list.

  • “I often joke around and call her a ‘warrior.’ There’s no doubt that she has the skill and courage to fight her numerous battles. And I hope her acting career can become a true resting area, not her battleground,” Hwang added.

  • “Squid Game,” which premiered on Netflix on Sept. 17, 2021, went on to become the streaming platform’s “most-watched series launch of all time.” The series also received 14 Emmy nominations in early September.

South Korean star Jung Ho-yeon made history this week by becoming the first Korean featured in the Time100 Next list.

On Wednesday, Time unveiled its list of 100 people from different fields who they believe could shape the future, with 28-year-old Jung among the individuals named under the Phenoms list.

Jung rose to fame after being cast in the hit Netflix series “Squid Game,” her first acting job. Hwang Dong-hyuk, the Emmy award-winning director of the series, recalled the first time he saw Jung audition for the role of Kang Sae-byeok.

Hwang told Time that he had already spent “three tiring months” searching for the right actor to play the character. He eventually watched Jung’s audition tape but “didn’t have high expectations” at the time due to Jung’s lack of acting experience.

About 10 seconds into the tape, Hwang said he suddenly darted upright from his chair and admitted he was “captivated by what was on the screen.”

Her acting in the video was somewhat unfamiliar and stiff compared with other seasoned actors. However, I also saw Hoyeon not showing any sign of being shy,” Hwang said. “Nor did she want to hide the fact that she didn’t have any acting experience. She seemed to acknowledge and accept her weaknesses, and was committed to overcoming them.”

Squid Game,” which premiered on Netflix on Sept. 17, 2021, went on to become the streaming platform’s most-watched series launch of all time. The series also received 14 Emmy nominations in early September.

Months after the show’s successful premiere, Jung and fellow actor Lee Jung-jae, who plays the character Seong Gi-hun, won several awards, including historic Outstanding Performance SAG Awards in February.

I think Hoyeon is still fighting every day — against her fame, the expectations, and the jealousy of her success, as well as her own desires,” Hwang said.

I often joke around and call her a ‘warrior.’ There’s no doubt that she has the skill and courage to fight her numerous battles. And I hope her acting career can become a true resting area, not her battleground.”

 

Featured Image via @hoooooyeony

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