In a heartbreaking turn of events, South Korean actor Lee Sun-kyun, renowned for his role in the Oscar-winning film “Parasite,” has been found dead in what appears to be a suicide, as confirmed by South Korean police to NBC News on Wednesday.
Rising Star’s Lee Sun-kyun Demise
Lee Sun-kyun, born in Seoul in 1975, had gained international acclaim for portraying the father of a wealthy family in the dark comedy “Parasite,” which secured four Academy Awards in 2020, including the prestigious Best Picture. Despite the film’s success, Lee’s personal struggles came to light as he faced allegations of using marijuana and other illegal drugs, vehemently maintaining his innocence throughout the investigation.
The actor’s life took a tragic turn as he was discovered lifeless in a car parked at a central Seoul park, with a charcoal briquette found in the passenger seat. The police initiated the search for Lee following a distressing message left by him, suggesting a possible suicide.
Lee Sun-kyun career was not limited to the success of “Parasite.” In 2021, he took on the lead role in “Dr. Brain,” a groundbreaking Korean-language sci-fi thriller produced for Apple TV+. His contributions to South Korean cinema included notable films such as “Helpless” and “All About My Wife,” showcasing his versatility as an actor.
The actor’s recent run-in with the law was part of a larger crackdown on narcotics in South Korea, a country with strict drug laws. This crackdown has seen several celebrities and high-profile individuals facing legal consequences.
Facing public scrutiny, Lee had addressed the nation in a broadcast in October, expressing remorse for the situation. “I am sincerely so sorry to have let you down even by being implicated in such an unethical issue,” he stated. “I am sorry to my family who are suffering and enduring so much,” he added.
The news of Lee Sun-kyun death prompted an outpouring of grief on social media in South Korea. Many users mourned the loss of a “brilliant actor” and criticized the intense media coverage surrounding the case. Some comments highlighted the importance of empathy, emphasizing that even if Lee had committed wrongdoings, the pressure placed on him was excessive.
In the wake of this tragedy, Lee Sun-kyun’s legacy will be remembered not only for his cinematic achievements but also for the struggles he faced, shedding light on the darker aspects of fame and the toll it can take on individuals.