When people hear the word ‘Korea’, the only thing that promptly comes in mind is K-Pop which has taken the world by storm. It is no secret that today Korean entertainment industry is sky rocketed. The world is definitely fallen in love with Korean pop and their endless awesome dramas.
Korean entertainment industry, a multi-million dollar industry, has fascinated the youth from all over the world by their catchy songs, irresistible dance moves and phenomenal acting. The actors and singers known as K-pop stars are literally worshiped by their fans. Their influence has gone so strong that people follow their styles crazily. Not only this, they are endorsement brand’s icon too. Big companies offer them huge money to endorse their products. The reason behind this craziness is their level of success and fame. They have achieved so much that now they have become a brand themselves.
When it comes to enlist the most successful Korean celebrities, the list is dominated by actors and singers including some young talents. However, some of the sport personalities, who are the pride of the nation, also secured a position in this list. Take a look at below list of top 10 highest paid Korean celebrities in 2021 in terms of their professional achievements, success and earning in 2021.
Table of Contents
- 10. Oh Seung Hwan: $2.75 million/ year
- 9. Hyun-Jin Ryu: $7 million/ year
- 8. Lee Min Ho: $58,700 USD/ episode
- 7. So Ji Sub: $67,100 USD/ episode
- 6. Jo In Sung: $67,100 USD /episode
- 5. Lee Young Ae: $83,500 USD/episode
- 4. Hyun Bin: $83,900 USD/episode
- 3. Jun Ji Hyun: $83,900 USD/ episode
- 2. Kim Soo Hyun: $83,900 USD/ episode
- 1. Shin Soo Choo: $20 million/ year
10. Oh Seung Hwan: $2.75 million/ year
The 10th position in this list is occupied by the greatest baseball player of Korea. Oh Seung-Hwan is a professional baseball relief pitcher for St. Louis Cardinals and Major League Baseball. The South Korean reliever has also played in KPO League of South Korea and Nippon Professional Baseball of Japan. Known as The Final Boss, Hawn is considered as one of the greatest closer in Korean baseball history. This 34 year old righty has been given the tag of ‘Stone Buddha’ as he could maintain emotionless face in every situation. After signing one year contract with St. Louis Cardinals for $ 2,500,000 on January 2016, Hawn became a big name in Korea.
9. Hyun-Jin Ryu: $7 million/ year
Another baseball player from Korea who made a place in this list. After spending four seasons with KBO League, Ryu is currently playing for Los Angeles Dodgers of MLB. Being a starter pitcher, he also became first Korean player to serve as the starting pitcher of a MLB game. In 2008 Summer Olympic, Ryu competed for South Korea National Baseball Team where they won the gold medal. Ryu played a very crucial role in this victory. In 2013, Ryu signed a 6 years deal with Los Angeles Dodgers for $36 million. Presently, he is carrying a cap hit of $7.8 million with a base salary of $7 million.
8. Lee Min Ho: $58,700 USD/ episode
The heartthrob of millions, 29 years old Lee is a terrific actor and singer. This South Korean TV actor is well known for his leading role as Gu-Jung-Po on 2009 Korean TV series ‘Boys over Flowers’. This series gave him a widespread fame as an actor and paved his way to launch himself as a film actor with the film Gangnam Blues in 2015. The youngest actor in this list and arguably the most recognized South Korean actor in the world, is said to charge $58,700 USD/ episode regardless of the drama. His most famous TV series are ‘Boys over Flowers’ and ‘The Heirs’ for them he also won many awards.
7. So Ji Sub: $67,100 USD/ episode
The 39 years old Sub is a Korean actor and rapper. He broke into glamorous industry as Jeans model but his break-out role came in 2004 in TV series ‘I’m Sorry, I Love You’ where he played the character of Cha Moo-hyuk. His other notable films and TV shows include ‘Chain and Abel’, ‘Sophie’s Revenge’ and film ‘Rough Cut’. Being an outstanding singer, Sub has also released several hip-hop EPs. This superstar has bagged many awards for almost every TV show he did. With having a total net worth of $16 million, the actor is estimated to gain $67,100 USD/ episode.
6. Jo In Sung: $67,100 USD /episode
The man, who came as a teenager in the industry, is ranked today the 6th highest paid actor in Korean entertainment industry. The 35 year old Jo made his debut as a model in 1998 and later in 2000 he started his acting career by starring in drama ‘School3’. However, he received public attention through TV series ‘What Happened in Bali’ and ‘The Wind Flows’. His mainstream of success and popularity came when he acted in films ‘The Dirty Carnival’, ‘The Classic’ and ‘A Frozen Flower’. This charismatic actor has won many awards for his unparalleled works. Presently, the actor prices $67,100 USD/ episode.
5. Lee Young Ae: $83,500 USD/episode
Here comes the first lady in this list. This stunning beauty is leaving people awestruck with her talents and grace. The 46 years old Lee came in world stage in 1991 as a model and soon after in 1993, she debuted as an actress in drama ‘How’s Your Husband’. The renowned actress is best known to global audiences for her leading role in the hugely successful Korean historical drama ‘Jewel in the Palace’. This role gave wings to her success and after this her popularity grew exponentially. Cinemanila International Film Festival winner actress was also critically acclaimed for her role in crime thriller film ‘Sympathy for Lady Vengeance’. In 2017 the actress made her comeback in TV screen after 12 years long break.
4. Hyun Bin: $83,900 USD/episode
One of the hottest and most sought-after actors today in Korean entertainment fraternity is Hyun Bin. Hyun, a world-wide name, is best known for his roles in ‘My Name is Kim Sam-soon’, ‘Secret Garden’ and ‘The World that They Live In’. Even at the age of 34, the actor is managed to attract the attention of millions and make a place in this list. He made his acting debut in 2002 with the film ‘Shower’ but this film couldn’t be released due to lack of funding. Finally, in 2003 he made it happened with the TV series Bodyguard. The dashing actor is now estimated to charge $83,900 USD/ episode.
3. Jun Ji Hyun: $83,900 USD/ episode
Another lady in this list, who is presently the highest paid actress in Korea. She secured 3rd position in a male dominating list. Quite impressive! Jun Ji Hyun, also known by her nickname CF Queen Ji Hyun , is a South Korean model and actress who launched herself as a model at the age of 16. Later at the age of 19 her film debut came with the movie ‘White Valentine’ in 1999. She rose to global fame for her role in movie ‘The Sassy Girl’. After this blockbuster movie she became a popular sensation and appeared in many super hit movies too. Known as ‘Gianna Jun’ in Hollywood, the 35 year old beautiful actress is one of the most in-demand celebrity endorsers in Korea. The actress is believed to have earned over $11.5 million from the endorsements alone in her entire career.
2. Kim Soo Hyun: $83,900 USD/ episode
Kim Soo Hyun, a South Korean actor, is worldwide known for his TV dramas ‘Dream High’, ‘Moon Embracing the Son’ and ‘My Love from another Star’. After his hugely successful drama My Love from another Star, this 29 years old actor became the highest paid actor in Korean entertainment industry and an international star. He made his TV debut with the drama ‘Kimchi Cheese Smile’ in 2007 and afterwards he also gave some super hit movie like ‘The Thieves’ and ‘Secretly, Greatly’. Apart from movies and dramas, the outstanding actor is involved in many commercials too, where he made a massive profit.
1. Shin Soo Choo: $20 million/ year
The 34 years old Korean baseball player Shin Soo tops the list with an impressive salary of $20 million/ year. The cross-over baseball star currently plays for Texas Rangers of MLB after playing for Reds, Indians, and Mariners. In 2013, the baseball legend signed a 7 year contract with Texas Rangers for $130 million. Presently having a market value of $126 million, this phenomenal player is undoubtedly one of the highest paid celebrities in Korea in 2021.
These 10 are the highest paid and most successful celebrities in Korea right now. They are not only entertaining the world with their talents but also making their country proud. Leading a celebrity life is not easy at all. Sometime even their personal life becomes a matter of entertainment but these stars are capable enough to maintain a balance between professional and personal life. That’s why today they could write their names in this list.