From Cannes to Calamity: Famous 'Parasite' Actor in Apparent Suicide Amid Drug Scandal

Written by Jeppe W

Dec.27 - 2023 10:59 AM CET

Photo: Shutterstock.com
Photo: Shutterstock.com

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Lee Sun-kyun, the renowned actor celebrated for his role in the Oscar-winning film "Parasite," was found dead in a shocking apparent suicide this Wednesday. The demise of the 48-year-old actor occurred amid an ongoing investigation into suspected drug use.

The Seoul Police discovered Lee unconscious in his car parked near Waryong Park in central Seoul. A charcoal briquette, known to cause fatal carbon monoxide poisoning, was found in the vehicle, pointing towards a likely suicide.

This alarming discovery was made following a report by Lee's manager, who expressed concern after finding a note resembling a suicide memo at the actor's home in Cheongdam-dong.

Lee had been under intense scrutiny, facing allegations of drug use. He had appeared for questioning at the Incheon Metropolitan Police Agency three times, the last session lasting a staggering 19 hours. The investigation stemmed from reports of Lee's alleged drug use in Seoul's affluent Gangnam district.

Despite these allegations, Lee consistently maintained his innocence. He tested negative in both initial reagent tests and a more comprehensive drug test conducted by the National Forensic Service. Lee's legal team had even requested a polygraph test to establish the truth in the ongoing dispute with a hostess, who had accused him of frequent drug use at her residence.

Lee Sun-kyun's career had been on an upward trajectory since his significant role in "Parasite," which garnered global acclaim, including multiple Academy Awards in 2020.

His talent was further recognized with a Screen Actors Guild Award in 2021 and a nomination for the best actor at the International Emmy Awards for his role in "Dr. Brain." This year, two of Lee's films, "Sleep" and "Project Silence," were selected for the prestigious Cannes Film Festival.

Lee's sudden death has shocked fans and colleagues worldwide, marking a tragic end to a career that had reached its zenith.

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