Topmost beautiful image of Jun Ji Hyun 全智賢 전지현
Jun Ji-Hyun (born Wang Ji-Hyun on 30 October 1981), also known as Gianna Jun, is a South Korean actress. She rose to fame for her role as The Girl in the romantic comedy My Sassy Girl (2001), one of the highest-grossing Korean comedies of all time. Other notable films include Il Mare (2000), Windstruck (2004), The Thieves (2012), The Berlin File (2013) and Assassination (2015).
Jun has also starred in television series My Love from the Star (2013-2014) and The Legend of the Blue Sea (2016-2017). The success of her films and television dramas internationally established her as a top Hallyu star.
Jun was born in Seoul, South Korea. Her mother and her mother’s friends all encouraged her to be a model or actress due to her tall and slim body shape. Her childhood dream was to become a flight attendant but later gave up after a plane flight experience. At the age of 16, her high school friend who was a model introduced her to a photographer. Using the stage name Jun Ji-Hyun, she began her career as a model for Ecole Magazine in 1997.
In 2003, Jun starred in physiological thriller film, The Uninvited which wowed critics but failed to catch on with viewers. Throughout this time she was a constant presence in TV ads and on billboards in Korea and also in other Asian countries. She reunited with Kwak Jae-Yong, the director of My Sassy Girl in 2004, appearing as a policewoman in romantic comedy Windstruck. However, viewers felt her role was too similar to My Sassy Girl. There were also signs that her popularity had started to suffer because of overexposure in advertisements. Nonetheless, Windstruck became the best-performing Korean film in Japan at the time, where My Sassy Girl was not as well known. In a 2005 survey of influential movie producers, she was ranked among the top ten most bankable stars in Korea.
Jun’s next project Daisy teamed her with Jung Woo-sung (who frequently appeared together with her in Giordano and 2% Lotte Chilsung Water advertisements) and drew attention for its 100% location shooting in the Netherlands, and for using the Hong Kong director Andrew Lau
2006–2010: Hollywood debut
In late 2006, it was announced that Jun would be making her long-predicted jump to Hollywood as the lead role in Blood: The Last Vampire. The international co-production, which was filmed in China and Argentina in 2007, is the live-action adaptation of a popular Japanese anime. She went through three months of hard training to play the sword-wielding martial arts heroine. During the filming and promotions for the movie prior to its 2009 release, she adopted the Westernized name Gianna Jun. Jun then launched her own luxury jeans brand in 2008, named “Gianna by True Religion”, her first celebrity line. She was reportedly involved in every stage of their production, from design to deciding on fit and wash and their decoration with accessories.
For the film A Man Who Was Superman, Jun cut off her signature long silky hair to play a cynical documentary producer who meets an odd, Hawaiian-shirt-clad modern-day hero who battles urban apathy and preaches the virtues of lending a hand. Of initially feeling pressured at the opportunity to work with acclaimed actor Hwang Jung-min, she said, “Although luck was probably involved, I think it’s destiny for an actor to ‘meet’ new work. On the first day I met him, I realized that I have much to learn from him, not only from his acting but also as an individual.
In 2010, she acted opposite Chinese actress Li Bingbing in the English-language film Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, based on Lisa See’s bestselling novel of the same name, which was directed by Wayne Wang (The Joy Luck Club). The film, set in remote 19th-century China, features the lifelong friendship between two women, Lily and Snow Flower, and their imprisonment imposed by the strict cultural codes of conduct for women at that time. She was photographed by Annie Leibovitz for the July issue of the American edition of Vogue, the first Korean actress to be included in the iconic fashion magazine.
2012–present: Career resurgence
As part of the star-studded cast of The Thieves, Jun was a scene stealer in Choi Dong-hoon’s 2012 heist film about thieves from Korea and China who team up together to steal a diamond worth US$30 million, which is locked in a special room at a casino in Macau. The Thieves became the second top-selling Korean film of all time.
She next played a translator married to a North Korean intelligence agent in the 2013 spy thriller The Berlin File, and director Ryoo Seung-wan praised Jun’s action scenes and her North Korean dialect. Jun’s success on the big screen reaffirmed her status as one of the top actresses in Korea, as well as being one of the biggest box offices draws in chungmuro. 14 years after Happy Together in 1999, Jun made her highly anticipated return to television in fantasy romance My Love from the Star, opposite her The Thieves co-star Kim Soo-Hyun. Jun plays a present-day top actress who falls in love with an alien who landed on earth 400 years ago during the Joseon Dynasty, played by Kim. The series was a rating success, sparking trends in fashion, make-up, and restaurants. Jun won the Daesang (or “Grand Prize”), the highest award for television, at the 2014 Baeksang Arts Awards and the 2014 SBS Drama Awards. The drama reestablished Jun as a leader of the Hallyu, and she was given the President’s Award at the Korean Popular Culture and Arts Awards.
In 2015, she reunited with director Choi Dong-hoon for Assassination, an espionage action film set during the 1930s colonial era in which she played a sniper who assembles a squad of independence fighters to kill a Japanese army commander and a pro-Japanese Korean business tycoon. The film was another box-office success for Choi and Jun; Assassination was the highest-grossing Korean film of the year as well as the seventh all-time highest-grossing film in Korean cinema history. Jun was awarded Best Actress at the Grand Bell Awards and Max Movie Awards. In January 2016, Korean entertainment and media company CJ E&M acquired her agency Culture Depot. The same year, Jun was ranked 8th on Forbes Korea Power Celebrity. It was her second consecutive year in the top 10, having been ranked 4th in 2015.
In November 2016, Jun made her small-screen comeback in the SBS fantasy romance drama The Legend of the Blue Sea with Lee Min-ho, reuniting with My Love from the Star scriptwriter Park Ji-Eun. Jun ranked 9th on Gallup Korea’s list of the 10 best actors of 2016, becoming the only woman to be included.