We're big fans of the long-running K-pop group SHINee, and we love seeing rapper and vocalist Choi Minho showcase his talents beyond the stage. This handsome multihyphenate has graced the silver and small screens since 2010, and we're always excited to see what kind of project he picks up next. This year, his movie, New Normal—a thriller with an impressive cast, including Hallyu royalty Choi Ji Woo, Squid Game's Lee Yoo Mi, and Block B's P.O—has been invited to film festivals abroad. Meanwhile, he also adds another K-drama to his portfolio. If you can't get enough of Minho just like us, read on for some of our fave dramas and movies from him! Which one do you like best?
1. My First Time (2015)
Before Netflix launched its remake, My First First Love, in 2019, there was My First Time, a heartwarming, surprisingly realistic coming-of-age story centered around a group of friends dealing with life as young adults. There are miscommunications galore, and everyone commits all sorts of blunders, but that's precisely what makes the series and its stumbling characters so relatable and lovable. Minho plays lead guy Tae Oh, a rich college student who lets his friends stay over at his house while they figure out their problems. He realizes he has feelings for his childhood best friend, Song Yi (So Dam), along the way, but his confusing thoughts and actions only cause misunderstandings between the two of them. Things get even more complicated when his friend, Seo Ji An (Min Jae), also expresses interest in Song Yi.
2. Canola (2015)
This film takes the audience on an emotional journey with Grandma Gye Choon (Oscar-winning actress Youn Yuh Jung), a Jeju Island diver who gets separated from her grandchild, Ye Ji (Go Eun), one day. When they reunite 12 years later, Ye Ji has been hardened by a tough life in Seoul, but Granny doesn't give up on her and helps her feel at ease. As Ye Ji gets used to life in Jeju and realizes just how much Granny loves and trusts her, she begins to change for the better. Minho plays Han Yi, Hye Ji's classmate in school who develops a crush on her. Hye Ji initially hates him, but they soon become close friends. But just as Ye Ji starts to enjoy her new life, figures from her past in Seoul come knocking on her door. Warning: Stock up on tissues when you watch this movie because it's a certified tearjerker.
3. Derailed (2016)
Who else is in it: Ma Dong Seok, Kim Jae Young, Jung Dae Eun
Minho gets to show another side of himself in this action film where he stars alongside Eternals actor Ma Dong Seok. He plays Jin Il who leads a group of runaways struggling for survival on the streets. They try to pull a fake prostitution scam using Ga Young (Dae Eun) as bait. Their plan goes awry when their “victim,” karaoke bar owner Hyung Suk (Dong Seok), takes Ga Young away to work as a prostitute after the rest of the gang steal his car and wallet. Jin Il must now take part in bigger crimes and schemes to earn money and get Ga Young back. As the movie continues, the audience also learns more about Hyung Suk and realizes not everything is as black and white as it seems.
4. Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Youth (2016)
This star-studded sageuk series tells the story of the Hwarang, a group of elite warriors created by Queen Jiso (Ji Soo) to defend the throne. Leading the Hwarang is the poor but talented peasant Moo Myung (Seo Joon) who takes on the identity of his best friend, Sun Woo, after his death. He falls for Sun Woo's sister, the hardworking Kim Ah Ro (Ara) who becomes the physician for the Hwarang. Meanwhile, the queen's son and the nation's future king decide to join the Hwarang with a false identity as Kim Ji Dwi (Hyung Sik). Minho plays Kim Soo Ho, a noble with a penchant for swordplay and a reputation as a playboy. He has a soft spot for his sister, Kim Soo Yeon (Da In), Ah Ro's friend.
5. The Battle of Jangsari (2019)
Who else is in it: Kim Myung Min, Megan Fox, Kim Sung Cheol, Kim In Kwon, Kwak Si Yang
This action-war film is the second installment of a trilogy following the first film, Operation Chromite. The plot is based on the true story of 772 student soldiers who fought against North Koreans on Jangsari Beach to divert their attention away from Incheon, where the UN was sending forces to help South Korea (Operation Chromite). While the students are cheerful at first, they soon awaken to the realities of war as they come face to face with death at every turn. Minho plays Choi Sung Pil, one of the student squad leaders, who realize how dire their situation is from the start. But while the students fight an important battle in Jangsari, the rest of the world doesn't realize the depth of their sacrifice. Reporter Maggie (Megan Fox), a war correspondent, sheds some light on their plight and tries to convince the US military not to desert the students.
6. Yumi's Cells (2021)
This rom-com drama is based on the popular webtoon Yumi's Cells by Lee Dong Gun and features cute animated scenes. It tells the story of Yumi (Go Eun), a diligent office worker who just wants to have a healthy relationship. We get a glimpse of how she truly feels every time we see inside her head where her different cells make all the hard decisions so that she can live her best life. Her Love Cell starts to get rejuvenated when she meets Goo Woong (Bo Hyun), a straightforward game developer she meets on a blind date. Minho only plays a special role in the drama's first season, but it's a very memorable one. Yumi has a crush on his character, the kind and popular Chae Woo Gi, who is her junior at work. Spoiler: Yumi dreams of Woo Gi, so we see Minho in her bed. What we would give to wake up to Minho's smiling face in the morning!
7. The Fabulous (TBA)
Who else is in it: Chae Soo Bin, Kim Min Kyu, Lee Sang Woon, Park Hee Jung, Choi Hee Jin
This delightful rom-com follows the story of four best friends and their journey of success and survival as they work in the fashion industry. We're so excited to see Minho on the small screen again! He plays Ji Woo Min, a handsome and skilled freelance retoucher who doesn't feel any spark at work (or in love). Soo Bin plays Pyo Ji Eun, the section chief for the PR agency of luxury brands. Work is tough, but Ji Eun has big dreams she wants to achieve, so she's not giving up just yet. Also in their group of friends are designer Joseph (Sang Woon) and model Ye Sun Ho (Hee Jung).
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