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Daniel Dae Kim

Award-Winning Actor; "Lost" and "Hawaii Five-0" Producer, Cultural Diversity & Counter-Human Trafficking Activist

Through the diversity of his roles on stage and screen, Daniel Dae Kim continues to expand our perceptions of the Asian American man. In characters ranging from the King of Siam, a Shakespearean hero, a social worker for the Chicago needy, to a counter terrorist agent, his work has consistently proven to transcend the historical…

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Through the diversity of his roles on stage and screen, Daniel Dae Kim continues to expand our perceptions of the Asian American man. In characters ranging from the King of Siam, a Shakespearean hero, a social worker for the Chicago needy, to a counter terrorist agent, his work has consistently proven to transcend the historical barriers of race and stereotype.

Daniel’s most work on ABC’s “Lost,” is no exception. As Jin Soo Kwon, a Korean businessman and reluctant enforcer for his father-in-law, his character transformed from an overprotective “traditional” husband to a man who re-learns how to live and love. His portrayal of this multi-faceted character signaled a breakthrough for primetime network television, and has helped make LOST a worldwide hit since its debut in 2004.

Since then, both Daniel and the show have been widely recognized for their excellence. Sharing a 2006 Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Ensemble, the Korean American actor’s universal appeal was also recognized by PEOPLE Magazine, which named him one of the ‘Sexiest Men Alive’ in 2005, as well as TV GUIDE which named him one of ‘TV’s Sexiest Men’ in 2006. In that same year, Daniel was individually honored with an AZN Asian Excellence Award, a Multicultural Prism Award and a Vanguard Award from the Korean American Coalition, all for Outstanding Performance by an Actor. In 2009, his recognition continues with the prestigious KoreAm Journal Achievement Award in the field of Arts and Entertainment.

Born in Busan, South Korea and raised in New York and Pennsylvania, Daniel discovered acting while a student at Haverford College. Though briefly considering a career as an attorney, he decided to follow his true passion and moved to New York City, where he began his work on stage. There he performed in classics such as “Romeo and Juliet, ” Chekhov’s “Ivanov,” and Ibsen’s “A Doll’s House,” as well as working with an improv comedy troupe. Despite his early success, however, he decided to deepen his dedication to the craft by studying at the Graduate Acting program at New York University, where he earned a Master’s Degree in Fine Arts.

Upon graduation, Daniel’s film career began in earnest with roles in “The Jackal,” “For Love of the Game,” “The Hulk,” “Spider Man 2” and “The Cave,” as well as the Academy Award winner for Best Picture, “Crash.”

On television, he’s guest starred on numerous shows, including “CSI,” “ER,” and, for two seasons, “24,” as CTU Agent Tom Baker. In 2008, he also starred in the Emmy nominated mini-series adaptation of Michael Crichton’s “The Andromeda Strain.” Kim has also complemented his television work by lending his voice talents to video games, creating characters in “Saints Row” 1 and 2, “Scarface: The World Is Yours,” “Tenchu” and “24,” as well as the animated TV series’ “Justice League Unlimited” and “Avatar.”

This past summer Daniel rekindled his love for the stage by performing the role of the King of Siam in the iconic production, “The King and I” at London’s world-renowned Royal Albert Hall.

Though he spends time in Los Angeles and New York, Daniel spends most of the year in Honolulu, where he devotes his free time to a number of different charities, his restaurant and his family.

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A Conversation With Daniel Dae Kim

Daniel Dae Kim discusses the importance of staying connected to his Korean heritage

LOST and Found: Discovering and Cherishing your Heritage
Through the variety and complexity of his roles on screen and stage, Daniel Dae Kim continuously expands the public’s perception of the Asian-American man. Best known for his characters ranging from the loving but overprotective and mysterious husband on LOST, to the cop wrongly accused of corruption on “Hawaii Five-0,” Daniel has constantly transcended the historical hurdles of stereotype, culture, and race. In this groundbreaking speech, Daniel shares the story of not only moving from South Korea to the United States at a young age, but being raised in a culture very different from his own, finding his voice and ultimately achieving worldwide success without giving up his heritage or identity. He demonstrates the best strategies for not only integrating into a different culture, but positively claiming ownership of processes – whether creative, educational, financial or beyond.

Human Rights, Human Trafficking & Illicit Networks in North Korea: A True Account
Aside from his acclaimed work on television and in theater, Daniel Dae Kim is a strong advocate and activist in the fight against human trafficking. In this two-person presentation Daniel and Mike Kim share their experiences combating human-trafficking, revealing the horror stories they’ve encountered and the success stories they’ve been able to make a reality. This inspiring talk is an emotional journey that also provides great insight into one of the most secretive and controversial countries and governments in the world.

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