HoYeon Jung who plays Kang Sae-Byeok, personal life and career

Hoyeon jung

Since the Squid Game was released on Netflix in September of 2021, HoYeon has been a hot topic all over social media. The 27-year-old who is originally a supermodel based in Korea impressed everyone with her captivating acting skill in the new thrilling show. Another factor that shocked everyone was the fact that this was her first acting debut aside from her modeling career. Her acting skills have been praised by many celebrities and acting specialists, many saying she is a “Natural”. People on many social media platforms such as Twitter, TikTok, Instagram can’t seem to get enough of her. Many labeling her their “Girl crush” and even going as far as calling her their love of the life… which is totally understandable, anyone who sees her would fall in love because of her charisma and beauty.


Her hashtag on TikTok #Hoyeonjung already has over 900 million views which is a lot considering Squid game was released just this year. Before her prominent presence SNS through Squid Game, she had around 400k followers on Instagram but as if right now 13 million followers which sound just ridiculous. She has gotten a very overwhelming amount of attention overnight which she absolutely deserves. Now, let’s talk about her personal life, her career, and her relationships ofc.

HoYeon Jung (Korean: 정호연) labeled as  “Korea’s next top model” by Vouge was born in born June 23, 1994, which makes her in her late 20’s. She and her two siblings were all born in Seoul, South Korea and it’s currently where she is based in. Jung earned a bachelor’s degree in modeling from Dongduk Women’s University. At the age of just 16, is when she started her career as a model. HoYeon Jung is well-known for her flaming red hair and outgoing attitude. She appeared in Seoul Fashion Week without an agency and established herself there before signing with ESteem Models and competing on Korea’s Next Top Model for public recognition. Following her appearance on Korea’s Next Top Model, she was featured in magazines such as Vogue Girl Korea, Nylon Korea, and ELLE Wedding. She also appeared in a layout for First Look Korea magazine with Shin Hyun-ji and Hwang Hyun-Joo, as well as a Lucky Chouette advertisement.

After debuting internationally a Louis Vuitton exclusive in 2016, she has walked for many famous shows and brands such as Marc Jacobs, Fendi, Max Mara, Alberta Ferretti, and Rag & Bone. She has walked the runway for Jeremy Scott, Tory Burch, Topshop Unique, Lanvin, Dolce & Gabbana, Missoni, Bottega Veneta, Emilio Pucci, Chanel, Miu Miu, Giambattista Valli, Prabal Gurung, Jason Wu, H&M, Jacquemus, Burberry, Acne Studios, Roberto Cavalli, Diesel Black Gold, Versus (Versace), Narciso Rodriguez, Paco Rabanne, Schiaparelli, DSquared2, Blumarine, Tod’s, and Etro, and Gabriela Hearst. Jung has appeared in editorials for Vogue, British Vogue, Dazed, Love magazine, CR Fashion Book, and Into the Gloss, as well as on the covers of Vogue Japan, Vogue Korea, W Korea, and Harper’s Bazaar Korea. Models.com nominated her as a “Top Newcomer” and “Model of the Year” contender in 2017.

Jung stated in an interview with W Korea, that while being at New York Fashion Week when she was invited to put in a video audition for Squid Game. She said, and I quote “I remember how I spent all my time reading the script apart from when I ate food. I sent the video in, and the director contacted me, asking me to meet in person. So I dropped everything and flew in right away,”. After she got the news that she was cast, HoYeon says she was very ecstatic and couldn’t bring herself to believe that she’s about to make her acting debut, she says “When my CEO told me I’d been cast, the first thing I said was, ‘Why?’ I was so happy when I heard the news, but it was like a greater fear had taken over me. [I was like] ‘Thank you very much, but I can do this?”

Kang Sae-Byeok in Squid Game

Kang Sae-Byeok

Now, let’s discuss her role as Kang Sae-Byeok in the Squid game. Kang Sae-byeok needs the prize money from Squid Game to get her mother and the rest of her family out of North Korea. She also intends to utilize the money to provide a good life for her younger brother, who lives in a Seoul orphanage. Sae-byeok is a talented thief who also knows how to use a knife, in addition to being a North Korean defector. Kang, on the other hand, has joined team Seong by the end of the series, not just physically but also morally. Kang reaches a breaking point after the most blatant non-cooperative game, in which she watches her opponent play the game collaboratively, sacrificing herself so that Kang might spend the money to return to her brother. Despite the fact that Kang Sae-byeok, player 067, died during the games, she is still able to assist her brother. A year after the games, Seong finds him, takes him out of the orphanage, and reunites him with Cho’s mother, who had unwittingly lost her son.

Jung also discussed how she prepared for her Squid Game role as a North Korean exile. “I saw a lot of North Korean defector documentaries. I also researched a lot and practiced speaking with a North Korean accent with a tutor.”She went on, “Above all, I believe I was able to embrace [the character] Sae-byeok without any difficulty since I am similar to her. I left Korea in 2016 to pursue my modeling career abroad, and I spent a lot of time alone. At the moment, my strongest emotion was ‘loneliness’… That sense of loneliness while attempting to survive and live isn’t all that dissimilar.”

Hoyeon and Blackpink’s Jennie


Another thing that fans have noticed since she has risen to fame is the fact that she is very good friends with Blackpink Jennie. Jung and Jennie frequently show their support for one another by posting silly selfies on social media. Lee Jung-Jae said in a variety of show footage with the Squid Game group that Jennie even visited the scene and provided a coffee truck in support of Jung.

Hoyeon’s relationship with Lee dong-Hwi

Hoyeon and dong hwi

Finally, it’s time to talk about her relationship with Lee dong-Hwi. Funny enough some fans were absolutely devasted when they found out that the actress has been in a 6 year-long relationship with a fellow entertainer.HoYeon Jung is in a happy and healthy relationship with fellow entertainer and actor Lee Dong-hwi, whom she reportedly started dating in 2015. Lee’s label reportedly confirmed their involvement, and it was later said that the couple did not want to hide their love and romance because they are free spirits themselves and always prefer to have things out in the open.

As per sources, they went public only after overcoming issues like their ongoing responsibilities in the world of showbiz and their age gap. Lee was born on July 22, 1985, nine years before his girlfriend, who was born in 1994. Because of their advanced sense of style and diverse work in the business, HoYeon and Lee are commonly referred to as the “fashionista pair.” Lee’s portrayal as Ryu Dong-ryong in the famous K-Drama series “Reply 1988” helped him make a name for himself. Lee is also the host of ‘Orange Tag’ and a member of the group MSG Wannabe, which includes other Korean celebrities. Both HoYeon and Lee have different musical ties. Earlier this year, Lee astounded admirers with his singing talents.


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