Han Hyo Joo is a South Korean actress under BH Entertainment. She is best known for her leading roles in the television dramas Brilliant Legacy, Dong Yi, and W, as well as the film Cold Eyes for which she won Best Actress at the Blue Dragon Film Awards. Han was first discovered in a teenage beauty pageant organized by food corporation Binggrae in 2003. She began her acting career in the sitcom Nonstop 5 and the gangster comedy My Boss, My Teacher.
Director Lee Yoon-ki cast Han in 2006 for the starring role in his low-budget independent film Ad-lib Night, which follows a young woman who rediscovers herself through an eerie overnight encounter with strangers. She won the Best New Actress awards at the Korean Association of Film Critics Awards and Singapore International Film Festival for her performance.
Han catapulted to stardom through Brilliant Legacy costarring Lee Seung-gi, which became a massive success by maintaining to be the number one spot in the viewership rating chart for 20 consecutive weeks and reached a peak rating of 47.1%. It was the most popular TV drama of 2009.
After Brilliant Legacy Han took on the titular character in MBC’s 49th-anniversary project Dong Yi (2010), the series became a hit during its run both domestically and across Asia. Han won several acting awards for her portrayal of Choi Suk-bin, including the Daesang (Grand Prize) award at MBC Drama Awards and the coveted Best Actress award at Baeksang Arts Awards. The TV series solidified Han as a household name in Korea.
In 2013, Han’s was blackmailed by her ex-manager. According to police, the ex-manager Lee illegally transferred 16 photos of Han and her ex-boyfriend from her digital camera to his mobile phone. Lee then threatened to publish the compromising photos unless he and his two accomplices were paid ₩400 million.
In 2019, Han Hyo Joo has been cast as the main character in the USA’s “Treadstone,” a television spin-off of the “Bourne” film series starring Matt Damon. It would be her first TV project in Hollywood.