The Info List - Moon Chae-won

Moon Chae-won (born November 13, 1986) is a South Korean actress. Moon first attracted attention in 2008 in her supporting role as a gisaeng in Painter of the Wind. She was next cast in Brilliant Legacy, one of the top-rated Korean dramas of 2009. 2011 marked Moon's career breakthrough, with leading roles in the television period drama The Princess' Man and the action blockbuster War of the Arrows; both were critical and commercial hits. For her performance in the latter, Moon won Best New Actress at the Grand Bell Awards and the Blue Dragon Film Awards. Moon's other notable television series include the revenge melodrama The Innocent Man (2012) and the humanistic medical drama Good Doctor (2013).

Early life and education

Moon Chae-won was born in Daegu, South Korea. When she was in sixth grade, her family moved to Seoul.[3] She studied Western Painting at the Chugye University for the Arts, but dropped out in 2006 to pursue acting.


2007–2010: Beginnings

Moon made her acting debut in 2007 in Mackerel Run, alongside fellow newcomer Lee Min-ho; they were among 60 actors who auditioned for the teen sitcom. Moon and Lee also appeared in the 2008 comedy film Our School's E.T..[4][5]

In 2008

Her breakthrough came in 2008 period drama Painter of the Wind. In the adaptation of Lee Jung-myung's historical fiction novel, she played a beautiful gisaeng who falls for Shin Yun-bok (played by Moon Geun-young), a female painter passing herself off as a man.[6] Their onscreen chemistry and the homoerotic subtext of their characters' relationship was received positively, and the couple subsequently received the most votes in the Best Couple poll at the 2008 SBS Drama Awards. It was the first time in Korean drama history that two actresses won the Best Couple Award, despite the sexual conservatism of Korean network television.

Moon's further raised her profile with Brilliant Legacy, in which she played a privileged girl who alternately antagonizes and pities her stepsister.[7] Brilliant Legacy became one of the top-rated Korean dramas of 2009, with a peak viewership rating of 47.1%.[8] The success of the drama boosted Moon's popularity as an actress. Another supporting role followed in My Fair Lady, where she played an upbeat shoe designer who lives next door to her crush, a butler.[9]

In October 2010, she signed with talent agency Barunson Entertainment (later renamed MSTeam). Afterwards, Moon landed her first leading role in It's Okay, Daddy's Girl, playing an immature daughter who transforms into a mature professional woman after a family tragedy.

2011: Breakthrough

At a photo-shoot for The Princess' Man, 2011

In 2011, Moon was offered the sole female role in War of the Arrows, an action blockbuster set during the Second Manchu invasion of Korea. Along with her costars Park Hae-il and Ryu Seung-ryong, Moon underwent serious archery and horse riding lessons. War of the Arrows eventually went on to become the highest grossing Korean film of 2011, with 7.48 million admissions. Moon was praised for her portrayal of a feminine yet feisty woman abducted by a foreign army on her wedding day, yet who isn't a typical damsel in distress and instead survives by her wits and sheer will.[10] She later received Best New Actress recognition at the Grand Bell Awards and the Blue Dragon Film Awards for her performance.[11][12]

Moon returned to the small screen in the Joseon-era drama The Princess' Man, about a fictional forbidden romance between the daughter of Grand Prince Suyang and the son of Kim Jongseo (played by Park Si-hoo), whose fathers were real-life political enemies.[13] The Princess' Man was well-received critically and commercially, and though initially criticized for her acting, Moon won viewers over as the series went on, eventually winning a Top Excellence Award at the year-end KBS Drama Awards.[14][15] She also received a Best Dressed nod from the Korea Lifestyle Awards for giving a boost to the hanbok fashion industry via her two period projects, and was named Honorary Prosecutor by the Supreme Prosecutors' Office.[16]

2012–present: Acclaim

In 2012, Moon starred in the Lee Kyung-hee-penned melodrama The Innocent Man opposite Song Joong-ki. She drew praise for her performance as a cold, cynical woman groomed to take over her father's conglomerate, who later reverts to helpless innocence after losing her memory. Ratings for The Innocent Man topped its timeslot during its run, and led to Moon winning a Top Excellence Award at the KBS Drama Awards for the second year in a row.[17][18][19]

In 2012

This was followed by the 2013 medical drama Good Doctor revolving around an autistic savant resident (played by Joo Won).[20] To prepare for her role as pediatric surgeon, Moon met with real-life doctors in a hospital setting, familiarizing herself with medical terms and observing surgeries first-hand.[21][22]

She next starred in Awaiting, a short film directed by Kang Je-gyu.[23] Moon played a woman separated from her husband (played by Go Soo) for sixty years by the division of North and South Korea. Awaiting was one of the four short films comprising Beautiful 2014, an omnibus project that premiered at the 38th Hong Kong International Film Festival.[24]

Moon returned to the big screen in a 2015 romantic comedy directed by Park Jin-pyo, which reunited her with previous Brilliant Legacy costar Lee Seung-gi.[25] In Love Forecast (also known as Today's Love), she played a weather forecaster whose pretty face belies the glib-talking, hard-drinking personality underneath.[26][27][28] The film passed the break-even point with 1.89 million viewers and Moon won the Producer's Choice Award at Bucheon International Film Festival.[29] She then starred opposite Yoo Yeon-seok in Mood of the Day, in which they play two strangers who meet on the KTX and spend 24 hours together in the unfamiliar city of Busan.[30][31]

Moon then took on the leading female role in MBC's thriller Goodbye Mr. Black, her first television series in three years.[32] The same year, Moon left her former agency MS Team Entertainment and signed with Namoo Actors.[33]

In 2017, Moon was cast in the Korean adaption of Criminal Minds.[34] The same year, Moon was cast in Auspicious Grave, the third installment of the "divining art trilogy" by Han Jae-rim.[35]



Year Title Role Notes
2008 Our School's E.T. Lee Eun-shil
2011 War of the Arrows Choi Ja-in
2014 Awaiting Yeon-hee short film from Beautiful 2014
2015 Love Forecast Kim Hyun-woo
2016 Mood of the Day Bae Soo-jung
2018 Auspicious Grave Cho-sun

Television series

Year Title Role Network Notes
2007 Reconstruction of Love young Hwang Hyo-eun Dramax episode 2:
"살까지 뺐는데!"
Mackerel Run Min Yoon-seo SBS
2008 Painter of the Wind Jung-hyang
2009 Brilliant Legacy Yoo Seung-mi
My Fair Lady Yeo Eui-joo KBS2
2010 Road No. 1 Min Young-jin MBC cameo, episode 20
It's Okay, Daddy's Girl Eun Chae-ryung SBS
2011 The Princess' Man Lee Se-ryung KBS2
2012 The Innocent Man Seo Eun-gi
2013 Good Doctor Cha Yoon-seo
2016 Goodbye Mr. Black Swan MBC
2017 Criminal Minds Ha Seon-woo tvN

Music video appearances

Year Song Title Artist
2008 "Parting Once Again" Sung Si-kyung


Year Song Title Notes
2011 "Clementine" Track from It's Okay, Daddy's Girl OST

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2008 16th Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards Best New Actress (TV) Painter of the Wind Won
SBS Drama Awards Best Couple Award with Moon Geun-young Won
New Star Award Won
2009 45th Baeksang Arts Awards Best New Actress (TV) Nominated
KBS Drama Awards Best New Actress My Fair Lady Nominated
2010 SBS Drama Awards Excellence Award, Actress in a Special Planning Drama It's Okay, Daddy's Girl Nominated
2011 48th Grand Bell Awards[11] Best New Actress War of the Arrows Won
32nd Blue Dragon Film Awards[12] Won
9th Korea Lifestyle Awards Best Dressed of the Year[36] N/A Won
3rd Asian Jewelry Awards Diamond Award, Actress category N/A Won
27th Korea Best Dressed Swan Awards Best Dressed, TV Actress category N/A Won
19th Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards[37] Excellence Award, Actress (Film) War of the Arrows Won
Top Excellence Award, Actress (TV) The Princess' Man Won
KBS Drama Awards[38] Best Couple Award with Park Si-hoo Won
Popularity Award, Actress Won
Excellence Award, Actress in a Mid-length Drama Nominated
Top Excellence Award, Actress Won
2012 48th Baeksang Arts Awards Best Actress (TV) Nominated
7th Seoul International Drama Awards Outstanding Korean Actress Nominated
1st K-Drama Star Awards Excellence Award, Actress The Innocent Man Nominated
KBS Drama Awards Best Couple Award with Song Joong-ki Won
Netizen's Award Won
Excellence Award, Actress in a Mid-length Drama Nominated
Top Excellence Award, Actress[39] Won
2013 53rd Monte-Carlo Television Festival Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series The Princess' Man Nominated
8th Seoul International Drama Awards Outstanding Korean Actress The Innocent Man Nominated
21st Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards Top Excellence Award, Actress (TV) Good Doctor Nominated
6th Korea Drama Awards Top Excellence Award, Actress Nominated
2nd APAN Star Awards Excellence Award, Actress Nominated
KBS Drama Awards[40] Best Couple Award with Joo Won Won
Popularity Award, Actress Won
Excellence Award, Actress in a Mid-length Drama Won
Top Excellence Award, Actress Nominated
2014 9th Seoul International Drama Awards Outstanding Korean Actress Nominated
2015 19th Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival[29] Producers' Choice Award Love Forecast Won
2016 MBC Drama Awards Top Excellent Actress in Mini-series Goodbye Mr. Black Nominated


  1. ^ "Moon Chae-won re-signs with MSteam Entertainment". The Korea Times. 31 December 2015. 
  2. ^ Son, Ji-hyoung (29 September 2016). "Moon Chae-won signs with Lee Joon-gi's agency". Kpop Herald. Herald Corporation. Retrieved 2016-09-29. 
  3. ^ Sunwoo, Carla (6 January 2012). "Moon Chae-won lonely no more". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  4. ^ "Back when Moon Chae-won was Lee Min-ho's girl". K-pop Herald. 9 January 2015. 
  5. ^ "Lee Min Ho and Moon Chae Won Want to Do a Melodrama If They Work Together Again". Soompi. 19 July 2015. 
  6. ^ Han, Sang-hee (23 September 2008). "Korea's Sweetheart Moon Becomes Mysterious Artist". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  7. ^ Han, Sang-hee (3 August 2009). "Supporting Roles Stealing Spotlight". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  8. ^ Park, Sun-young (16 July 2009). "Brilliant drama leaving its own legacy". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  9. ^ Oh, Jean (19 August 2009). "Riches-meets-rags in new drama". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  10. ^ Lee, Hyo-won (4 August 2011). "Arrow aims for new horizons". The Korea Times. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  11. ^ a b "The Front Line top winner at Korea's Grand Bell Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. 19 October 2011. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  12. ^ a b Lee, Claire (27 November 2011). "The Unjust best picture at Blue Dragon Awards". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  13. ^ "Moon Chae Won: "Impressions of The Princess' Man Still Lingers in My Mind"". KBS Global. 25 October 2011. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  14. ^ "Moon Chae-won Reveals Alluring Charms". The Chosun Ilbo. 10 September 2011. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  15. ^ Im, Ju-ri (28 October 2011). "Moon Chae-won finds meaning in her work". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  16. ^ Sung, So-young (4 January 2012). "Actors named celebrity prosecutors". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  17. ^ Lee, Hye-ji (22 August 2012). "Moon Chae-won, Park Si-yeon fight for Song Joong-ki's love in new TV series". 10Asia. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  18. ^ Jeon, Ji-young (4 October 2012). "Seo Eun-gi Conquers Both Work and Love". KBS Global. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  19. ^ "Innocent Man Mun Chae-Won "I sincerely loved Eun-Gi"". Innolife. 17 November 2012. Archived from the original on 18 February 2013. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  20. ^ Kim, Gwang-kuk (5 August 2013). "PREVIEW: KBS Mon/Tue Drama Good Doctor". TenAsia. Archived from the original on 7 June 2014. Retrieved 2013-08-06. 
  21. ^ Choi, Eun-hwa (3 August 2013). "Moon Chae Won Says She Aims to be More Professional Than Pretty". enewsWorld. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  22. ^ "Moon Chae-won Scores Another Hit with Medical Drama". The Chosun Ilbo. 25 October 2013. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  23. ^ Lee, Mi-ji (19 December 2013). "Moon Chae Won to cast in director Kang Je Gyu's The Day Min Woo Comes". StarN News. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  24. ^ Tsui, Clarence (25 March 2014). "Beautiful 2014 (Mei Ho 2014/Mei Hao 2014): Filmart Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  25. ^ Lee, So-dam (25 July 2014). "Lee Seung Gi and Moon Chae Won Confirmed for Film Today's Love". enewsWorld. Retrieved 2014-07-26. 
  26. ^ Kim, Hee-eun (4 March 2014). "Moon Chae-won comes back to the big screen". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-06-17. 
  27. ^ "Interview: Moon Chae-won's belly dance and relationships". Hancinema. 14 January 2015. Retrieved 2015-01-23. 
  28. ^ Bae, Jung-hyeon (5 February 2015). "Moon pulls off role as a modern girl". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2015-02-05. 
  29. ^ a b Conran, Pierce (10 July 2015). "LEE Min-ho and MOON Chae-won to Receive BiFan Awards". Korean Film Biz Zone. Retrieved 2015-07-10. 
  30. ^ "'그날의 분위기', 티저 공개..맹공 유연석 vs 철벽 문채원". OSEN (in Korean). 30 November 2015. 
  31. ^ "Actress talks turning 30, moving forward". Korea JoongAng Daily. 21 January 2016. 
  32. ^ "Moon Chae-won, Lee Jin-uk star in new TV drama". The Korea Times. 15 September 2015. Archived from the original on 16 September 2015. Retrieved 19 September 2015. 
  33. ^ Kim, Jin-seok (29 September 2016). "문채원, 나무엑터스와 전속 계약 '이준기와 한솥밥'[공식]". Daily Sports (in Korean). Retrieved 2016-09-29. 
  34. ^ Kim, Jin-seok (23 February 2017). "[단독] 문채원, 韓리메이크 '크리미널 마인드' 여주인공". Sports Chosun (in Korean). 
  35. ^ "Moon Chae-won joins cast of 'Myeongdang'". Korea JoongAng Daily. 24 August 2007. 
  36. ^ "Hyundai Mobis awarded grand prize at '2011 Korea Lifestyle Awards'". The Korea Herald. 6 December 2011. 
  37. ^ "So Ji-sub, Park Hae-il, Lee Tae-gon win top prize at culture and entertainment ceremony". 10Asia. 16 December 2011. 
  38. ^ Hong, Lucia (2 January 2012). "Shin Ha-kyun scores top prize at 2011 KBS Drama Awards". 10Asia. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  39. ^ "Big Winners of 2012 Announced at Drama Awards Ceremonies of Major Broadcasters". 10Asia. 1 January 2013. Archived from the original on 15 April 2014. 
  40. ^ Lee, Cory (2 January 2014). "Kim Hye-soo Reclaims Glory, Good Doctor, Secret Love Win Big at the 2013 KBS Drama Awards". 10Asia. Archived from the original on 28 March 2014. Retrieved 2014-08-22. 

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