Tragic Loss of Renowned South Korean Actor Lee Sun-kyun
On Wednesday, the 48-year-old actor was discovered unconscious in a car in a popular park in Seoul. Although the exact circumstances of his death are still unknown, authorities were notified that he had left a message before leaving the house.
Lee had been the subject of a drug-related inquiry since October. There have been reports of possible drug use, including marijuana and ketamine, with a bar hostess in Seoul. Lee acknowledged consuming what she gave him but denied knowing the chemicals were illegal drugs.
The actor, who even asked to have a lie detector test conducted through his lawyer, had angrily refuted claims that he had used drugs at the hostess’ house. The investigation continued even after drug testing produced unsatisfactory or unclear results. In addition to expressing sadness at his demise, Lee’s agency, HODU&U Entertainment, advised against disseminating misleading information.
Online comments expressed empathy and highlighted celebrities’ humanity, pointing out that mistakes are human. With two young sons, Lee was married to actress Jeon Hye-jin and had a prosperous career spanning more than 20 years. She became well-known worldwide after starring in the film Parasite.
The probe tarnished the actor’s impeccable reputation, which had negative effects on his career. Businesses apparently deleted advertising material featuring Lee, and he was dismissed from a TV series.
Marijuana usage and other drug violations are seen as significant crimes in South Korea, a country that has high expectations for celebrities. With Lee’s passing, the number of South Korean celebrities who have been the subject of drug-related inquiries has increased recently, indicating a wider social worry.