7 Highest Paid Korean Stars: Jun Ji Hyun, Kim Soo Hyun, Yoo Jae Suk and More

highest-paid Korean stars
Credit: KBS

KBS’ Entertainment company Live released the list of highest-paid stars on the 3rd.

Song Hye Kyo came in No.7 on the list. The show revealed that the female star received about $51,000 per episode in Descendants of the Sun. By the time the show wrapped up, she took home about $820,000 in total. Aside from the series, Song Hye Kyo makes $770,000 per commercial (based on annual contracts). It is estimated that she has earned more than $3.4 million in advertising alone this year.

Shin Dong Yeop took 6th place. In 2011, he was selected as the highest-paid entertainer who took home the most money from KBS. Shin made $4.2 million this year alone, with an appearance fee of $10,000 to $20,000 per episode.

Lee Seung Ki landed in 5th place. He earned about $600,000 in advertising per year. Before enlisting in the military, Lee Seung Gi received $60,000 per drama episode. Nowadays, he is said to have made about $10,000 per episode in his latest K-drama Vagabond and Mouse. Though he saw a dip, he earned about $6 million in total this year with his all variety shows and drama projects.

Song Joong Ki made it on the 4th spot. Since he starred in the hit series Descendants of the Sun, Song Joong Ki’s talent fees have increased drastically. He received about $51,000 per episode in Descendants of The Sun, but in his latest work Vincenzo, he made almost $170,000 per episode. The A-list star is said to have made more than $770,000 this year.

Yoo Jae Suk came in 3rd place. Yoo Jae Suk’s appearance fee per episode on the three terrestrial broadcasters ranged from $8,500 to $12,800, and for cable and general programming channels, he makes about $17,000 to $21,000 per episode. His advertisement fee alone is said to be about $510,000 to $ 710,000 per commercial and his income this year is revealed to be about $8.5 million.

Kim Soo Hyun took the second spot. After finding his fame in The Moon Embracing the Sun and My Love From the Star, Kim Soo Hyun became one of the highest-paid stars. His talent fee in It’s Okay to Not Be Okay reached $170,000 per episode, and he is expecting to receive about $470,000 per episode in his upcoming series. Kim Soo Hyun’s annual income is estimated to be $13 million.

Jun Ji Hyun took the title of the highest-paid South Korean actress. She received more than $85,000 per drama episode in My Love from the Star and The Legend of the Blue Sea. Since then, she has signed with about 25 advertisements, showing an outstanding performance. Her estimated income this year is $14.5 million.


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Translator Cho EK: I’m a big fan of Korean dramas and movies.

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