'Squid Game' 'Old Man' Actor Becomes First Native Korean-Born Actor to Win Golden Globe

Netflix's runaway hit Squid Game received three historic Golden Globe Award nominations, including a first win for O Yeong-su (also spelled Oh Young-soo).

The Squid Game actor—who played the Old Man character (Il-nam, contestant no. 001) in the enthralling 2021 Netflix K-drama series—took home the Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role on Television.

He beat out fellow nominees Billy Crudup and Mark Duplass from The Morning Show, Kieran Culkin from Succession and Brett Goldstein from Ted Lasso.

Born in October 1944, the 77-year-old Squid Game star is the first native Korean-born actor to win a Golden Globe, according to South Korea's Hankook Ilbo.

The Golden Globes were held with no host or guests in attendance this year, following controversy over the past few years, which saw the NBC network refuse to air the ceremony.

Actresses Sandra Oh (born in Canada to Korean parents) and Awkafina (born in New York City to a Korean mother and Chinese American father) have previously bagged Golden Globe awards.

Squid Game and the show's Lee Jung-jae (who played Gi-hun, player no. 456 who wins the deadly survival competition) also received historic first nods.

Squid Game, nominated in the Best Television Series—Drama category, is the first-ever Korean series to be nominated for a Golden Globe.

Lee is the first Korean actor to be nominated for the Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series—Drama category.

Actors Lee Jung-jae and O Yeong-su.
Actors Lee Jung-jae (player no. 456) and O Yeong-su (player no.001) seen in the "Squid Game" series on Netflix. Both actors were nominated for a Golden Globe award, with O taking home the award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role on Television. Netflix

According to Variety, before Squid Game, non-English projects have never won or been nominated in a major category at the Golden Globes as well as the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards or the Primetime Emmys.

Both O and Lee shot to international fame following the Korean series. But both are veteran actors in their native land.

Considered one of South Korea's greatest stage actors, O has appeared in more than 200 stage productions. He has won a string of South Korean national acting awards and is known for his roles in A Little Monk (2002) and Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring (2003).

Lee is one of the biggest television and movie stars in South Korea, known from a host of K-dramas and Korean films, including the film Housemaid, which competed for the Palme d'Or at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.

Lee will make his directorial debut in the upcoming Korean film Hunt, which stars himself and Jung Woo-sung, another major Korean actor who is the executive producer of the hit Netflix K-drama The Silent Sea.

In late December, Squid Game director Hwang Dong-hyuk revealed he is in discussion with Netflix about not just season two, but also a third season of the show, in an interview with South Korean broadcaster KBS. He noted "there should be a conclusion of sorts soon," according to South Korea's JoongAng Ilbo.

Lee Jung-jae at "Squid Game" LA screening.
Lee Jung-jae attends the "Squid Game" Guild Screening at NeueHouse Los Angeles on November 8, 2021 in Hollywood, California. Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Netflix

On the same day of Hwang's KBS interview, a Netflix official told South Korea's Edaily newspaper: "It is true that we are discussing various aspects and possibilities for Squid Game, including the production of season 3, but nothing has been decided yet."

A spokesperson for Netflix told Newsweek on Friday that "no further information" about either season will be shared at this time.

While both seasons have yet to be officially announced, Hwang revealed details about the "big plot" behind the season two, which will be focused on the story of Gi-hun.

Hwang said "the story of the people Gi-hun meets and chases after will be the big plot of season 2," according to Edaily.

A still from "Squid Game" on Netflix.
A still from "Squid Game" on Netflix. Netflix