BY Julie Jones | Feb 11, 2015 10:25 AM EST
During the interviews that followed the release of his first film, "Gangnam Blues," Lee Min Ho was asked which actor he looks up to and considers his role model. He did not hesitate to name his "Gangnam Blues" co-star Kim Rae Won.
Lee Min Ho has achieved remarkable success in dramaland with such hits as "Boys Over Flowers," "City Hunter," "Personal Taste" and "The Heirs." His first film also broke records at the box office, being the first 2015 movie to get two million viewers and doing so within an impressive three weeks of its release. Chinese distributors recently purchased the film, paying the highest price for any Korean film ever sold there.
That's a big achievement for any star.
But Lee Min Ho wants to be a star like Kim Rae Won. His admiration for Kim Rae Won predates their working on the film together.
"Kim Rae Won was in my first management agency," he told the Korean media outlet News1. "He was a senior colleague who had this aura that made me happy just being able to see him. Even now he's a good brother and senior colleague to me. I think it is a great experience to be able to work with Kim Rae Won after all these years."
In another interview with Star News Lee Min Ho spoke about how well the actors worked together. He said there was never any competition between them. Kim Rae Won always respected his instincts as an actor, even though Lee Min Ho was so much younger and had less experience.
"He never told me to act a certain way," said Lee. "After sharing his thoughts with me, he always asked for my opinion."
At 33 Kim Rae Won is only six years older than Lee Min Ho, but he's definitely had more drama and film experience. Kim has appeared in more than a dozen dramas, most notably playing a law student in the 2003 drama "Rooftop Room Cat" and a college grad forced to marry a high school girl in "My Little Bride." He's also appeared in several films, including the films "Flower Shadow" and "My Little Hero."
Kim Rae Won is currently earning praise for his starring role as anti-corruption investigation chief Park Jung Hwan in the hit drama "Punch." He plays a man who has often looked the other way when presented with corruption. When he learns his days are limited, he decides to make things right. He wants to be a good example and an inspiration to others.
In "Gangnam Blues" Kim and Lee Min Ho play childhood friends.
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