Kim Go-Eun has gone from zero to superstar in just one movie. From the ages of four to 14 she lived in Mainland China with her family, and it was there that she discovered her passion for film, vowing that she would become an actress while watching Chen Kaige’s Together (2002) for the ten millionth time. Next stop: the Korea National University of Arts.
There she mostly just appeared in some class productions, hardly the image of the fame-hungry career actress clawing her way to the top. But at 21 years old she met director Chung Ji-Woo through some mutual friends and without even realizing she was auditioning, she won the lead role of Eun-Gyo in his upcoming film A Muse. Suddenly she was catapulted into a role that not only required a number of onscreen sex scenes, but thrust her into the middle of a media firestorm over the sexuality of her role and the nudity that was required. The story of a young actress in the hands of a much older, far more experienced male director was too delicious for the press to resist, but their plan backfired and the sound of the scandal siren turned the film into the must-see succès de scandale of 2012. Kim wound up winning eight “Best New Actress” awards for her performance.
In a recent interview, she said, “When I stood on the stage for the first time, I was so nervous that I thought it would be too hard to do this for the rest of my life. But after my second performance, I felt ecstatic, as if I had wings on my back.” Those wings have launched Kim Go-Eun into the stratosphere.