Parasite Actor Lee Sun-Kyun Has Died Aged 48

Lee Sun-kyun
Credit: Alamy & CJ Entertainment

South Korean actor Lee Sun-kyun has been found dead, authorities have confirmed. 

Sun-kyun was best known for his role in the film Parasite, which became the first non-English language film to win the Best Picture Oscar.

Throughout his career that spanned over two decades, the star appeared in dozens of movies and TV shows.

Sadly, it has been confirmed that Sun-kyun has died aged 48 years old.

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In a statement, Lee’s agency HODU&U Entertainment said: “There is no way to contain the sorrow and despair.

“We respectfully ask that you refrain from spreading false facts based on speculation… so that [Lee’s] final journey will not be unfair.”

South Korea’s emergency office announced that the My Mister star was found dead in a car in a central Seoul park on Wednesday, as per the BBC.

The 48-year-old was found after his wife, Jeon Hye-jin, reported to police that the actor had left home.

It is unclear if Sun-kyun took his own life, however, a note is believed to have been found, South Korean news agency Yonhap reports.

Lee Sun-Kyun in Parasite.
Parasite actor Lee Sun-kyun has died aged 48 years old. Credit: CJ Entertainment

Sun-kyun had been under investigation for alleged marijuana and other psychoactive drug use since October.

The actor was reportedly questioned by the police three times, with one session allegedly lasting 19 hours.

Sun-kyun is believed to have claimed that he was tricked into taking the drugs by a bar hostess who then tried to blackmail him, Yonhap reports.

The 48-year-old had reportedly requested through his lawyer to take a lie detector test.

The report added that Sun-kyun’s drug tests had returned negative or inconclusive results.

Police have said that they regret that the actor has died amid the investigation, however, they added that the investigation was ‘conducted with [his] consent’, as per News1 Korea.

Drug offences, including those with the usage of marijuana, are considered serious crimes in South Korea.

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Celebrities in South Korea are held to the highest standards of propriety – with Sun-kyun having a squeaky-clean, family-man record prior to the allegations.

Reports that emerged from the allegations caused considerable damage to the actor’s reputation – he was dropped from the mystery TV series No Way Out, as per MailOnline.

In late October, before meeting with officers at an Incheon police station, Sun-kyun briefly spoke to reporters.

He said (via The Guardian): “I sincerely apologise for causing great disappointment to many people by being involved in such an unpleasant incident.

“I feel sorry for my family, which is enduring such difficult pain at this moment.”

Sun-kyun is survived by his wife and two sons.

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Written by Aimee Walker

Aimee is a senior content editor at IGV who specialises in finding the best original stories, trending topics and entertainment news. She graduated from Birmingham City University with a degree in Media and Communications.