- Acclaimed South Korean actor Lee Sun-kyun, known for his role in the Oscar-winning movie “Parasite,” was found dead in his car in Seoul.
- At the time of his death, Sun-kyun was under police investigation for alleged drug use, a claim he denied, asserting he was tricked into consuming them.
- He had filed a lawsuit against a bar hostess and another individual, accusing them of blackmail.
Lee Sun-kyun, the South Korean actor who gained international fame for his role in the Oscar-winning film “Parasite,” was found dead in a car in Seoul on Wednesday. The actor, who was 48, was under intense police scrutiny for alleged drug use at the time of his demise, as reported by The Associated Press (AP).
Yonhap news revealed that Sun-kyun’s family had reported him missing on Wednesday. They also mentioned that he had left behind a message that bore a striking resemblance to a suicide note. The Seoul Seongbuk police station initially reported that Sun-kyun was found unconscious in his car. However, emergency officials later confirmed his death.
Sun-kyun had consistently denied knowingly consuming drugs at the residence of a bar hostess. He claimed that he was deceived into taking them. In response to these allegations, Sun-kyun filed a lawsuit against the hostess and another individual, accusing them of blackmail. The rumors of drug use had sparked significant backlash, given that drug use is strictly forbidden in South Korea.
Sun-kyun’s role as the patriarch of a wealthy family in “Parasite” brought him global recognition. The film made history in 2020 by becoming the first non-English film to win the Best Picture at the Academy Awards. It also marked the first time a South Korean movie had won an Oscar.
In addition to the success of “Parasite,” Sun-kyun was awarded the Screen Actors Guild award for Best Motion Picture Ensemble Cast. He was also nominated for Best Actor at the International Emmy Awards in 2022 for his role in “Dr. Brain.”
Sun-kyun was a well-known figure in South Korea, particularly for his work in the TV drama series “Coffee Prince” and the drama “Behind The White Tower.” He also starred in “Pasta,” and “My Mister.”
In the wake of Sun-kyun’s death, the police investigation into his alleged drug use has been closed, as per The AP.
Clear Thoughts (op-ed)
The tragic death of Lee Sun-kyun, a shining light in South Korean cinema, raises serious questions about the coercive power of allegations and the intense scrutiny celebrities face.
Sun-kyun’s untimely demise, amid a storm of unproven drug use allegations, underscores the heavy toll that public shaming and reputational damage can take on individuals.
His insistence that he was tricked into consuming drugs, and the subsequent lawsuit he filed for blackmail, paints a picture of an individual caught in a web of deceit and betrayal.
The abrupt end to the police investigation, following his death, leaves more questions than answers.
In our rush to cast judgment and fuel scandal, let’s not forget the human cost. It’s high time we reassessed the price of fame, and the destructive power of unfounded accusations.
Let us know what you think, please share your thoughts in the comments below.