Kim Soo-hyun made his acting debut in the 2007 MBC family sitcom Kimchi Cheese Smile. In 2011, he starred in the KBS2 series Dream High, which earned him numerous recognitions, including Best New Actor at the KBS Drama Awards. In 2012, he was paired with Han Ga-in in the top-rating MBC sageuk The Moon That Embraces the Sun, which was named Best Drama at the 48th Baeksang Arts Awards. He also took home the Baeksang Best Actor trophy for his work in the series. That same year, he became part of the ensemble cast of the heist film The Thieves, in which he was nominated for two Best New Actor awards. In 2013, he bagged the Best New Actor trophy at the 50th Grand Bell Awards and the 50th Baeksang Arts Awards for the film Secretly, Greatly. In 2014, he reunited with his The Thieves co-star Jeon Ji-hyun in the widely popular SBS fantasy romantic comedy You From Another Star. He raked in several acting recognitions for his portrayal of an alien in the drama, solidifying his status as a top Hallyu star. In 2015, he starred in KBS2’s The Producers, in which he received three Daesangs. In 2020, he acted alongside Seo Ye-ji in the hit tvN series It’s Okay to Not Be Okay, which gave him another Daesang at the 5th Asia Artist Awards.

In 2014, Kim Soo-hyun emerged as Gallup Korea’s Television Actor of the Year. In 2016, he was included in Forbes’ 30 Under 30 Asia and also made the annual Power Celebrity List by Forbes Korea several times. In 2020, Kim Soo-hyun topped the list of highest-paid Korean actors, with a pay check of $165,000 per episode of It’s Okay to Not Be Okay.

Kim Soo-hyun enlisted for his mandatory military service in October 2017 and was discharged in July 2019. He has a half-sister named Kim Joo-na, who is a singer. He is a known bowling enthusiast.