Ok Taec-yeon (Hangul옥택연; Hanja玉澤演; born December 27, 1988),[2] known mononymously as Taecyeon, is a South Korean rapper, singer, songwriter, actor and entrepreneur. He is the main rapper of the South Korean boy group 2PM.

In 2010, Taecyeon debuted as an actor in the Korean drama Cinderella's Sister and since then has starred in Dream High (2011), Who Are You? (2013), Wonderful Days (2014), Assembly (2015), Let's Fight, Ghost (2016), and Save Me (2017), as well as the movies Marriage Blue (2013) and House of the Disappeared (2017).

Early life

Taecyeon was born in Seoul, South Korea,[4] but immigrated at the age of 10, with his parents and older sister Jihyen to Bedford, Massachusetts,[46] a small town situated in the Greater Boston Area. Taecyeon lived there for seven years, attending Bedford High School where he was a member of the Chess Club, Jazz Band, JV Soccer Team and National Honor Society, before returning to pursue his career in Korea. Taecyeon transferred to Young Dong High School in Seoul and then studied Business Administration at Dankook University and attended Korea University Graduate School of International Studies.[7] He is fluent in English, Korean and Japanese.[8] Taecyeon is also familiar with the use of the Busan satoori (dialect), which he used in the KBS2 drama Wonderful Days.

It was his sister Jihyen who persuaded him to participate in a JYP Entertainment audition, whose promotion she had noticed when surfing on the Internet. After his reluctant agreement to participate, both headed for New York City on his 17th birthday. A week later he was chosen for the final 35 and got the call to go to South Korea to go further in the competition. At first Taecyeon applied to become a model, but the judges suggested he try dancing and singing. Eventually he was named one of the dozen finalists (including his future bandmates Lee Junho and Hwang Chansung) to compete in the show Superstar Survival, but was the first contestant to leave the show.[10]

Music career

Debut with 2PM

In 2008 he took part in Mnet's Hot Blood Men[46] which follows the extreme training of 13 trainees in order to become a member of the boy band One Day. One Day spawned two boy bands, 2AM and 2PM, the latter of which Taecyeon became a member of. Six months after Hot Blood was aired on TV 2PM debuted with their first single "10 Points out of 10 Points" from their first EP Hottest Time of the Day, but it wasn't until their second EP 2:00PM Time For Change that their success in the Korean music industry skyrocketed.[46]

Solo career

Taecyeon was featured in Baek Ji-young's 2009 hit song "My Ear's Candy". Baek revealed that she asked Taecyeon to feature on the song after having listened to his rap on 2PM's single "10 Points out of 10 Points".[47]

In 2012, Taecyeon teamed up with his fellow Dankook University alumni students to produce a digital album titled Blue Bears with Taecyeon. The album was performed live at Dankook University for the matriculation ceremony. The title song “Wings” featured penned rap lyrics written by Taecyeon. The second song, a remake of Lee Gwangjo's “A Night Like Tonight" was also included in the performance, with an original rap written by Taecyeon himself.[19] The album went on sale in February 2012, with all proceeds donated back the University.[20]

Taecyeon released his first solo Japanese album Taecyeon Special: Winter Hitori in 2017.[48] As part of the solo project, he successfully held his first solo concert, 'Taecyeon (From 2PM) Premium Concert' at the Tokyo Dome City Hall in Japan on January 2 and the 3rd.[49]

Acting and hosting career

He formerly hosted SBS's music show Inkigayo with Wooyoung, and was a permanent cast member on Family Outing 2 before it was cancelled.[50]

In 2010 he made his acting debut in KBS drama series Cinderella's Sister alongside Moon Geun-young and Chun Jung-myung.[13][14] He then starred in high school drama Dream High, which received high domestic ratings as well as international popularity.[51]

In September 2011, FujiTV announced that Taecyeon was going to become a regular on their Sunday drama Boku to Star no 99 Nichi, along with Japanese actor Nishijima Hidetoshi and South Korean actress Kim Tae-hee. This is his first regular role on a Japanese drama.[52]

In February 2013, it was announced that Taecyeon would form an on-screen couple with Taiwanese actress Emma Wu, in the Global Edition of the reality show We Got Married.[53] The same year, he made his film debut in romantic comedy Marriage Blue.[54] He composed two songs for the soundtrack of the film.[3]

In 2014, he starred in KBS' weekend drama Wonderful Days, playing a tough-fisted bodyguard.[3] The same year, he joined tvN's cooking variety show Three Meals a Day directed by Na PD.[3] He later rejoined for a second season in 2015.[3] Taecyeon was praised for his hardworking image and easygoing personality on the show.[3]

In 2015, Taecyeon was cast in KBS' political drama Assembly. He plays an aspiring police officer who studies at the library to pass his entrance exams by day and works as an official’s chauffeur by night.[3]

In 2016, he starred in horror comedy Hey Ghost, Let's Fight with Kim So-hyun,[3] and featured in web-drama First Seven Kisses by Lotte Duty Free.[3]

In 2017, he starred in mystery thriller House of the Disappeared with veteran actress Kim Yunjin.[3] He then starred in OCN’s thriler drama Save Me alongside Seo Ye-ji.[3]

Other activities

OKCAT

In 2013, Taecyeon hosted a 30-minute press conference on ustream to introduce "Okcat", a green-colored cat character to the public. Previously, Okcat emoticons have been released on the chat application KakaoTalk. During the conference, Taecyeon told the history of his development of the character, and released his sketches to the public. The "Okcat" shop was opened on the same day, and featured a line of products with the image of the Okcat.[4][4]

Military enlistment

On December 9, 2010 a JYP Entertainment representative revealed that “Taecyeon would like to give up his American permanent residence visa and recently, on December 1st, he received his official confirmation for his permanent residence cancellation.”[4]

Taecyeon had a physical examination for drafting but received a physical body status sufficient only for enlistment as public service personnel, due to his poor vision and a dislocated shoulder back in 2008. In 2012 and 2013 he underwent surgery to correct the disk as well as to remove pins in his upper arm from a serious break in 2013. He was cleared for active duty in December 2013 but delayed his enlistment due to busy workload.[4]

In September 4, 2017, Taecyeon officially enlisted as an active duty soldier and began his mandatory military service.[4][4] On October 18, he completed his basic military training and was placed at the 9th Armed Forces Division in Gyeonggi Province as a military instruction assistant.[4]

Filmography

Film

YearTitleRole
2013Marriage BlueWon-chul
2017House of the DisappearedPriest Choi

Television series

YearTitleNetworkRoleNotes
2010Cinderella's SisterKBS2Han Jung-woo
2011Dream HighKBS2Jin Gook / Hyun Shi-hyuk
Boku to Star no 99 NichiFuji TVTae-sung
2013Who Are You?tvNCha Gun-woo
2014Wonderful DaysKBS2Kang Dong-hee
2015AssemblyKBS2Kim Kyu-hwan
2016Let's Fight, GhosttvNPark Bong-pal
2017Save MeOCNHan Sang-hwan

Television film

YearTitleNetworkRoleNotes
2016Home Sweet HomeKBS2TaecyeonCameo
2017You Are Closer Than I ThinkKBS2Kang Sung-min's friendCameo

Web series

YearTitleNetworkRoleNotes
2016Touching YouNaver TV CastDo Jin-woo
7 First KissesNaver TV CastOk Taec-yeonEp. 5-6

Variety shows

YearTitleNetworkNotes
2010Family Outing 2SBSMain cast
2013Human ConditionKBS2Segment: Living Without Stress
We Got Married (Global Edition)MBCwith Emma Wu
2014Three Meals a DaytvNMain cast
2015Three Meals a Day Season 2tvN
2016MommySBSMC with Lee Hwi-jae[4]
2017Suddenly a MillionaireO'live TVEpisodes 1-7

Discography

  • Taecyeon Special: Winter Hitori (2017)

Collaborations

YearSong TitleArtistAlbum
2009"My Ear's Candy"Baek Ji-young ft. TaecyeonEGO
2009"Yes I'm In Love"Bada ft. TaecyeonSee the Sea
2012"Classic"Park Jin-young, Miss A's Suzy, 2PM's Wooyoung and TaecyeonDigital Single (Reebok Classic CF)
"Madness"Miss A ft. TaecyeonIndependent Women Part III
2013"Hello (Japanese Ver.)"[4]Cho Yong-pil ft. TaecyeonHello
2017"Just Feeling"Kim Tae-woo ft. Jun. K & Taecyeon of 2PMT-WITH

Original soundtrack

YearSong TitleAlbum
2011"Dream High" (with Wooyoung, Kim Soo-hyun and Suzy)Dream High OST
"My Valentine" (with J.Y. Park & Nichkhun)
2013"My Way to You" (with Junho)7th Grade Civil Servant OST
"Marriage Blue Opening (결혼전야 Opening)"Marriage Blue OST

Awards and nominations

YearAwardCategoryNominated workResult
2010KBS Drama AwardsBest New ActorCinderella's SisterNominated
Popularity AwardTaecyeonNominated
201147th Baeksang Arts AwardsBest New Actor (TV)TaecyeonNominated
Most Popular Actor (TV)TaecyeonNominated
Mnet 20's Choice AwardsBest SixpackN/ANominated
3rd Bugs Music AwardsOST of the Year with Nichkhun & Park Jin-young"My Valentine"Won
KBS Drama AwardsBest Couple with SuzyDream HighNominated
201450th Baeksang Arts AwardsMost Popular Actor (Film)Marriage BlueNominated
Most Popular Actor (TV)Wonderful DaysNominated
3rd APAN Star AwardsExcellence Award, Actor in a Serial DramaNominated
KBS Drama AwardsNominated
2016KWEB FESTBest ActorTouching YouNominated
tvN10 AwardsBest Chemistry (with Ming-ki)Three Meals a DayNominated
20172017 Korean Film Shining Star AwardsPopularity Award[4]House of the DisappearedWon