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Lee Sun-kyun: The “Parasite” actor found dead in car on Wednesday

Lee Sun-Kyun’s Death:

Renowned for portraying the affluent head of a family in Parasite, actor Lee Sun-kyun faced a harrowing 19-hour interrogation in a drug case. Seeking to prove his innocence, he demanded a lie detector test. The shocking turn of events unfolded with Lee Sun-kyun’s untimely death, discovered in a car on a fateful Wednesday.

The death of South Korean actor Lee Sun-kyun shocked many fans of Korean cinema. He was found dead in a car in a Seoul park on Wednesday. The actor won international praise for his performance in the 2019 Oscar-winning film Parasite. He played the role of the wealthy head of the Park family in the film. While police suspect that he died by suicide, the investigation is still ongoing. The search for Lee Sun-kyun began after a distress call from his wife, who reported a letter that appeared to be written like a suicide note.

Here’s everything you need to know about Lee Sun-kyun and the controversy surrounding his death.

Lee Sun-Kyun:

Actor Lee Sun-kyun, born in 1975, was a popular name in Korean cinema. After graduating from the Korea National University of the Arts, she began her acting journey in 2001 with the television sitcom Lovers. He received worldwide praise after playing Park Dong-ik, the head of the wealthy Park family, in the 2019 Oscar-winning film Parasite. The entire cast of the film, including Lee, won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Motion Picture.

In addition to Parasite, Lee Sun-kyun had several popular South Korean projects, including Payback, Diary of a Prosecutor, My Mister, Killing Romance, and Kingmaker. After Parasite, the actor rose to fame for his work in Apple TV Plus’ first South Korean series, Dr. Brain. The show also earned him a nomination in the Best Actor category at the 2022 International Emmy Awards.

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His last film was the horror drama Sleep, in which he played the role of a sleep-walking husband. The film received critical acclaim and was screened at the Cannes Film Festival this year. The actor is survived by his actor-wife, Jeon Hye-jin, and two sons.

Lee Sun-Kyun’s cause of death?

Lee Sun-kyun, aged 48, was discovered lifeless in a car parked in a Seoul park on Wednesday, as reported by the South Korean news agency Yonhap. The presence of a charcoal briquette in the car’s passenger seat added to the grim discovery. The police initiated a search following a distress call from Lee’s wife, who informed them that the actor had left their residence and left behind a message resembling a suicide note. The Korea Crime Scene Investigation Team conducted an inquiry into the scene where the actor was found unconscious on December 27, 2023.

What led to the police investigation of Lee Sun-kyun?

The actor from Parasite was under scrutiny for suspected illicit drug consumption at the residence of a high-end bar hostess in Seoul. South Korea’s Incheon Metropolitan Police Agency conducted the investigation, during which Lee Sun-kyun underwent questioning three times, enduring a 19-hour session over the weekend, as reported by Reuters.

However, Lee claimed that he was blackmailed by one of the other accused persons in the same case and reported that he had lost several hundred thousand dollars to the alleged extortionist. Additionally, he stated that he was not aware that the substance he was consuming was an illegal drug.

According to Korean news outlet Yonhap, Lee tested negative in two drug tests: one was a rapid reagent test by the police, and the other was a laboratory-based test by the National Forensic Service. However, the stewardess who accused Lee maintained her claims. Therefore, Lee requested the police conduct a polygraph test to find out who was lying.

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“If she was telling the truth, the drug test from the National Forensic Service should have been positive, but it was negative,” Lee’s lawyer told Yonhap. Lee is in a very unjust situation, so a lie detector test should be conducted on both of them to scientifically confirm who is lying and who is not.

South Korea has strict laws against illegal drug use and drug-related crimes. They can face a prison term of six months, which can go up to 14 years for repeat offenders and dealers.

What did Lee Sun-kyun say about drug testing?

The media reported that Lee spoke briefly to reporters in late October before being checked into an Incheon police station. He said, “I sincerely apologize for causing great disappointment to many people by being involved in such an unpleasant incident. I am sorry for my family, who is suffering so hard at this time.”

What did Lee Sun-kyun’s family say after his death?

Following the actor’s death, his agency, HODU&U Entertainment, said in a statement, “There is no way to stop the grief and despair. We respectfully ask that you refrain from spreading false facts based on speculation so that [Lee] a final decision can be taken.” The journey would not be unreasonable.”

What is the police response to Lee Sun-kyun’s death?

According to a report from News1 Korea cited by the BBC, the police expressed regret over Lee’s demise occurring during the investigation. However, the police emphasized that the inquiry was carried out “with [his] consent,” clarifying their stance on the circumstances surrounding his death.

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