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K-Drama Stars Who Were Child Actors

BY Julie Jones | Dec 22, 2014 11:43 AM EST


Actress Go Ara will play Yoo Seung Ho's love interest in the new film "The Joseon Magician." She plays a Joseon-era princess on her way to marry a Qing Dynasty prince when she meets a magician and falls in love. Yoo plays the lovelorn magician.

One reason this romantic onscreen pairing is interesting is that both of the film's stars began their careers as child actors. He was only 11 when he had his first role in the drama "Immortal Admiral Yi Sun Shin." He has not stopped acting since, appearing in 13 dramas and nine films, before enlisting at the age of 19. His last role before enlistment was in the melodrama "Missing You" with Yoon Eun Hye and Park Yoochun. "The Joseon Magician" will be his first role since finishing his mandatory military duty.

Go Ara was 13 when she had her first role in "Sharp 1." Altogether she has appeared in seven dramas and and five films. Go Ara's last onscreen romance was in the police drama "You're All Surrounded" when she played a detective in love with Lee Seung Gi.

Yoo Seung Ho and Go Ara are not the only k-drama stars that viewers have seen grow up on the screen. Park Shin Hye and Jang Geun Suk may be the most famous. Park Shin Hye was 13 when she first appeared in a drama. Since "Stairway to Heaven" she has landed roles in almost two-dozen dramas and currently stars in the hit drama "Pinocchio." She has also done nine films, including the soon to be released "The Royal Tailors."

Jang Geun Suk was only 11 when he first appeared in the 1998 drama "Hug." He starred in a long list of dramas including "You're Beautiful," "Mary Stayed out All Night," "Love Rain" and "Pretty Man." He will appear in his ninth film next year, a short film known as "Camp."

Kim Yoo Jung is currently making the transition to adult roles. The 15-year-old actress has been working for a decade. She landed her first film role in "DMZ" and her first drama role in "Freezing Point" when she was only five.  She has said that when she grows up she wants to be a "real actress," although it seems that with 10 years of acting credits, she already qualifies. This year she appeared in the first 13 episodes of "Secret Door" and two films, "Elegant Lies' and "Room 731."

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