Edited by Seo Hayne
Translated by Yu Jin Kim
Girls’ Generation made a strong comeback in the K-pop scene last year with their full album FOREVER 1 to mark their 15th anniversary since their debut. Despite recent news of Sunny parting ways with SM Entertainment, it doesn’t mean the group is breaking up. There’s still a belief that they’ll reunite on stage someday. For now, the Girls’ Generation members are keeping busy with their solo careers as singers, actors, and emcees. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the acting careers of YoonA, Sooyoung, Yuri, and Seohyun, who have made their mark in the world of acting.
YoonA, recognized as the best girl group center of all times, has firmly established herself as an actress through her roles in various dramas. She won the hearts of viewers with her portrayal of the talented hotelier Chun Sa Rang in the recently concluded drama King the Land, which aired in August. Her remarkable chemistry with co-star Junho, who had previously shared the stage with her at the 2021 MBC Gayo Daejejeon, created a buzz even before the drama’s release and even sparked dating rumors.
YoonA was the first member of Girls’ Generation to embark on an acting career. Her early work in You Are My Sunshine achieved remarkable success, with viewership ratings reaching 43.6%. In this beloved drama, YoonA charmed audiences with her cheerful and wholesome portrayal of Jang Sae Byuk.
She also made a mark in the film industry, particularly with her comical performance in Confidential Assignment, which played a pivotal role in the film’s success and earned her a larger role in its 2022 sequel. Additionally, the disaster film Exit, where she starred alongside Jo Jung Suk, drew in a substantial audience of over 9.4 million moviegoers. YoonA’s next project is a romantic comedy titled 2 O’Clock Date, where she will collaborate with Ahn Bo Hyun.
Choi Sooyoung, who parted ways with SM Entertainment in 2019 and signed an exclusive contract with Saram Entertainment, met her best character in Not Others, which aired around the same time of YoonA’s King the Land. Based on a webtoon of the same name, Not Others is a family drama depicting a relationship between friends like mother and daughter. Sooyoung appears as Jin Hee, who volunteers to be the guardian of Eunmi (Jun Hye Jin), who becomes a mother at a young age. The drama received rave reviews for portraying the heartfelt journey of a mother and daughter, who were everything to each other, moving on to their respective paths in life despite facing conflicts.
Sooyoung also gained much love in Run On with Kang Tae Oh as the sub-couple. Although she hasn’t had a major box office hit so far, the star has been constantly appearing in many movies ranging from independent film Memories of a Dead End to big commercial films like Miss & Mrs. Cops and New Year Blues. Most of all, she left a strong impression on Miss & Mrs. Cops as the assistant of Ra Mi Ran and Lee Sung Kyung.
Seohyun has taken on challenging roles to break free from her image as the youngest member of the group and establish herself as a versatile actress. In the two-episode drama Hello Dracula, which aired in 2020, she garnered praise from viewers for her exceptional portrayal of a lesbian character navigating conflicts with her mother over her sexual identity.
In Love and Leashes, she showcased her bold and refreshing side as Jung Ji Woo, a member of the publicity team at a company who is unapologetically honest about her emotions and doesn’t hold back her thoughts. This movie garnered attention for its daring theme of BDSM. In Jinxed at First, where she starred alongside Naeun Woo, Seohyun exuded her lovely charm as Yi Seul Bi, a character determined to break free from a cruel fate.
Seohyun is set to captivate audiences once again in Netflix’s series Song of the Bandits, and she will also grace the screen in the upcoming fantasy movie Holy Night: Demon Hunters, alongside Ma Dong Suk, as well as in the much-anticipate sci-fi Seeking the King.
Kwon Yoori began her acting career in 2007 with the sitcom Unstoppable Marriage, the same year Sooyoung entered the acting scene. Over the years, she has taken on various lead and supporting roles. In 2021, Yoori starred in the historical drama Bossam: Steal the Fate, where she played Princess Hwain, a progressive and determined character. Her performance in the drama received rave reviews, and it achieved record viewership ratings on MBN. She also showcased her remarkable versatility in the show by tackling scenes like horseback riding, underwater sequences, and even cross-dressing.
The following year, she reunited with the Bossam star Jung Il Woo in Good Job, making fans all hyped up for their reincarnation-like romance. Despite her limited number of acting projects, Yoori expanded into the movie industry with her independent film Dolphin, which premiered at the Jeonju International Film Festival.
Editor Seo Hayne: I like actors as they faithfully lead through their long running-time. I also like idols who accomplish everything on stage within 3 minutes.