Which drama made Ji Chang Wook popular in China? How many Chinese dramas has he starred in since?

Ji Chang Wook in The Whirlwind Girl, Season 2

Korean Drama Trivia #5

While many South Korean actors may be quite famous for a sizeable segment of the western streaming audience, many of them are much more famous in other Asian countries, including China.

Some even become so famous in China, they spend a substantial part of their career acting in Chinese dramas.

And, yes, even learning to speak Mandarin to do so.

One South Korean actor who became famous in China is Ji Chang Wook.

An actor who is known in the west for his performances in recent dramas like Backstreet Rookie, If You Wish Upon Me, The Worst of Evil and, of course, last year’s Welcome to Samdalri, and one who has been famous in China for even longer.

But which drama made Ji Chang Wook popular in China, and how many Chinese dramas has he starred in since then?

Not many, as the actor’s career in China was actually quite short-lived.

Ji Chang Wook in Episode 1 of The Whirlwind Girl, Season 2

Ji Chang Wook became famous in China in 2014

The now 36-year-old actor has been famous in China for a decade.

His popularity rose in the country when, in 2014, he played the role of Seo Jung Hoo in the KBS2 drama Healer. A drama that also starred Park Min Young and Yoo Ji Tae.

Because of that popularity, he was offered roles in Chinese dramas, ending up starring in both the martial arts drama The Whirlwind Girl, Season 2 and Mr. Right (although, of this writing, nine years later and that drama is yet to be released Рyes, China often has a problem with actually releasing the dramas they film).

And yes, Ji Chang Wook did learn Mandarin to be able to act in them.

Unfortunately, as it turns out, he did not gain much traction in the Chinese drama industry.

Or more accurately, we can probably say fortunately for us at least.

As Korean dramas are more popular in the west than Chinese dramas and, since Healer, released Ji Chang Wook has now starred in nine of them, including last year’s Welcome to Samdalri.

Meanwhile, in 2024, he will also be starring in at least three more.

Our gain and China’s loss then, eh?

As for Ji Chang Wook’s one and only Chinese drama released, you can watch The Whirlwind Girl 2 for free at Viki.

About Michelle Topham

Brit-American journalist based in Austria, former radio DJ at 97X WOXY, and Founder/CEO of Leo Sigh. I've covered anime, manga, K-drama and music news for over a decade.