Actor Ha-kyun Shin is best known for his collaborations with influential South Korean director Park Chan-wook in such well-received films as the war thriller "J.S.A.: Joint Security Area," the crime drama "Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance," and the inventive horror film "Thirst." Shin was trained as a theater actor in his home city of Seoul at the Seoul Institute of the Arts, but he quickly found a home in screen acting. After appearing in two films by director Jin Jang in the late '90s, Shin broke into the mainstream with his Blue Dragon Award-winning portrayal of Private Chong U-jin in Park's "Joint Security Area," about the murder of two soldiers in the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea. The film was a massive critical and commercial success and, at the time of its release in 2000, stood as the highest-grossing Korean film of all time. Shin next starred in the hit 2001 comedy "Guns & Talks" before reuniting with Park in "Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance." Another milestone for both Park and Shin, the film follows deaf-mute Ryu (Shin) as he is pushed to extreme lengths to earn money for his sister's kidney transplant. Shin starred in several movies throughout the 2000's, including the outrageous comedy-fantasy "Save the Green Planet!" and "No Mercy for the Rude," in which he plays a chef moonlighting as a hitman. He landed a significant role in Park's genre-bending "Thirst," playing an old friend to the lead character, a priest who has recently become a vampire.