Cover Photo: Courtesy of Netflix

With Korean drama Vincenzo holding the number one spot on Netflix in Malaysia, add these other shows starring the the actor and philanthropist to your playlist

Having played a diverse spectrum of roles onscreen, South Korean actor Song Joong-ki has been delighting viewers since 2010 when he rose to fame as Gu Yong-ha in the historical coming-of-age drama Sungkyunkwan Scandal in 2010 and as one of the original cast members in the variety show Running Man in the same year until 2011.

But his biggest break came in 2016 when he was the male lead in the 52nd Baeksang Arts Awards Grand Prize for TV winner, Descendants of the Sun. In 2021, the 35-year-old returns with the tvN and Netflix television drama, Vincenzo—the 15th highest-rated drama in Korean cable television history to date.

See also: Vincenzo: Get Acquainted With Song Joong Ki & The Rest Of The Cast On The New K-Drama

But more than the glitz and glamour of acting, Song has become popular for having a big heart. He's been helping children with cancer through the Korea Childhood Leukemia Foundation (KCLF) since 2011 and has anonymously helped more than 10 children receive treatments in the past years. He has also reportedly donated his pay generated from narrating the documentary Tears of the Antarctic for this worthy cause. Song has since made donations to KCLF annually.

While in military service in 2015, the actor donated 100 million won to the Unicef Korea Committee to help the victims of the April 2015 Nepal earthquake. The heartthrob also donated to the House of Sharing in Gwangju, Gyeonggi, a shelter for elderly women who were forced into being comfort women by the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second World War. In a report, it says "the actor was likely influenced while filming his movie The Battleship Island, a period action film about Korean workers under Japanese rule." Last year, Song reportedly donated 100 million won for Covid-19 prevention. 

These philanthropies alone make this South Korean actor worth swooning over. Here, we list some of his drama shows and movies you can stream anytime.

1. Descendants of the Sun

This 2016 television drama is one of the most successful shows in South Korea, drawing a peak audience share of 38.8 per cent. This action-drama revolves around Captain Yoo Si-jin a.k.a. Big Boss (Song Joong-ki), the leader of a fictional elite special forces team of the 707th Special Mission Battalion in South Korea who was deployed in Uruk for a special assignment, and Dr Kang Mo-yeon (Song Hye-kyo), a surgeon who works at Haesung Hospital. Kang was later assigned against her will to lead a team of medical volunteers to Uruk. Their adventures began here and so was their true-to-life love story, which led to their marriage in 2017—and sadly to their divorce in 2019. Song-Song fans were in tears.

See also: Song Hye Kyo Is Making Her Korean Drama TV Comeback

Descendants of the Sun was named the Most Popular Show of the Year by Korea Broadcasting Advertising Corporation (KBS) and won the 52nd Baeksang Arts Awards Grand Prize in 2016.

2. Vincenzo

This drama, which premiered in February 2021, is about Park Joo-hyung (Song Joong-ki) who, at the age of eight went to Italy after being adopted by the head of the Cassano mafia family. He would then be renamed Vincenzo Cassano, becomes an Italian lawyer and a consigliere (adviser) for the mafia. Following his stepfather's death, his stepbrother attempted to kill him so he fled back to Seoul to recover hidden gold within Geumga-dong Plaza, where he helped a Chinese tycoon stash his gold in a mafia-secured vault within the complex.

Secretly, he planned to recover the gold and use it as his retirement fund after leaving both Italy and the mafia. However, a real estate company under the infamous Babel Group has illegally taken ownership of the building and Vincenzo must use his skills to reclaim it to recover his fortunes. He becomes involved with lawyer Hong Cha-young (Jeon Yeo-been), the type of attorney who will do anything to win a case.

The series is ongoing and is expected to complete its 20 episodes in April.


3. Space Sweepers

Dubbed as the first Korean space blockbuster, this futuristic movie is set in 2092 when planet Earth has become uninhabitable and where the UTS Corporation builds a new orbiting home for humanity that mimics the natural processes on Earth. Only a selected few are permitted to ascend and become UTS citizens, while those remaining on Earth breathe in polluted air and fight to feed their families.

After snatching a crashed space shuttle in the latest debris chase, Spaceship Victory's crew members find a seven-year-old girl inside. They realise that she's the humanlike robot wanted by UTS Space Guards and decide to demand a ransom in exchange. Song Joong-ki plays the role of Tae-ho, the former Commander of the Space Guards and the first-ever UTS Genius.

See also: 5 K-Drama Casts With The Best On & Off-Screen Chemistry

4. Nice Guy

Also known as The Innocent Man, the story is about a promising medical student Kang Ma-ru (Song Joong-ki) who is deeply in love with his neighbour Han Jae-hee (Park Si-yeon), a television reporter. But when her situation takes a turn for the worse and she becomes desperate to improve her life, she meets a man who changes everything—a rich CEO who introduces her to a life of comfort. So she turns her back on Kang, choosing money over love.

Song Joong-ki won the 20th Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards Top Excellence Award as an actor for his role in this drama.

5. Arthdal Chronicles

Criticised by Game of Thrones fans for sharing similarities with the hit American fantasy series by HBO, this television drama centres on a mythical land called Arth, where the inhabitants of the ancient city of Arthdal contend with power struggles, while some encounter love along the way. Eun-seom (Song Joong-ki) goes through hardships to bring his tribe back to life and learns of his true origins in the process. Kim Ji-won, whom Song Joong-ki worked with in Descendants of the Sun, plays the role of Tan-ya, a clever, pretty, bright Wahan girl destined to be the next Great Spiritual Mother. Arthdal Chronicles was filmed in Brunei in 2019. 

See also: Hit K-Drama Crash Landing On You To Be Produced As A Musical

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