A Black man. Famous in South Korea. As farfetched as you may find it, it’s true! Ghana-born Sam Okyere has definitely made a name for himself in the Korean entertainment world, and I find it amazingly impressive.
Especially considering the way Black people (Africans) are perceived in non-Black homogenous societies. Because of Western media, we can sometimes be labeled as “violent” “loud” and “dangerous”. But not Sam. Thanks to his command of the Korean language, charm, and acting skills, he’s become Korea’s go-to Black actor, even appearing in Vogue Korea!
Sam’s journey to K-stardom wasn’t his original plan. In an interview with Okayafrica he revealed that he first arrived as a Korean government scholar in 2009 with plans to become a computer engineer, but his adventurous spirit led to opportunities in entertainment:
After appearing on the show Hello Counselor, where he and a friend voiced concern over being racially discriminated against while also expressing their love for Korea, Sam’s career took off. Since then he’s been in a number of variety shows, including Korea’s SNL, and has acted in Korean Dramas- even a movie!