Lee Solar-kyun, a well-liked South Korean actor greatest recognized for his function within the Oscar-winning film “Parasite,” was discovered lifeless in a automobile in Seoul on Wednesday, authorities mentioned, after weeks of an intense police investigation into his alleged drug use.
Police and emergency officers initially discovered Lee in what they believed was an unconscious state within the automobile parked on a road in northern Seoul. Emergency officers later confirmed he was lifeless, in accordance with Seoul’s Seongbuk police station.
Police had been looking for Lee, 48, after receiving a report that he was lacking.
They refused to offer additional particulars together with whether or not they had decided Lee killed himself. However South Korean media shops together with Yonhap information company mentioned that Lee’s household earlier Wednesday reported to police that he left dwelling after leaving a message much like a suicide word.
Lee appeared in “Parasite,” which received Oscars for greatest image and three different classes in 2020. The category satire was the primary non-English-language movie to win greatest image within the then-92-year historical past of the Academy Awards, and was the primary South Korean film to win an Oscar. Within the movie, Lee performed the pinnacle of a rich household.
The movie’s solid, together with Lee, additionally received a Display Actors Guild award for the perfect movement image ensemble solid in 2020. He was nominated for greatest actor on the Worldwide Emmy Awards for his efficiency within the sci-fi thriller “Dr. Mind” final 12 months, as effectively.
Even earlier than “Parasite,” Lee had been a well-liked actor in South Korea for a very long time. He rose to stardom for his function in a success TV drama sequence, “Espresso Prince (2007),” and gained mainstream recognition with a sequence of hit TV dramas resembling “Behind The White Tower (2007),” “Pasta (2010)” and “My Mister (2018).”
Lee had been below a police investigation into allegations that he used unlawful medication on the residence of a bar hostess. Lee insisted he was tricked into taking the medication and that he didn’t know what he was taking, in accordance with Yonhap. However the investigation prompted in depth tabloid protection and unconfirmed on-line rumors about not solely his alleged drug use but in addition his personal life. Lee filed a swimsuit towards two folks together with the hostess, alleging they blackmailed him.
When he was first summoned for questioning at a police station in Incheon, a metropolis close to Seoul, in late October, he deeply bowed a number of occasions and apologized to his followers and household. “I really feel sorry to my relations who’re enduring too troublesome pains at this second. I once more sincerely apologize to everybody,” he mentioned.
Incheon police mentioned Wednesday they’d finish their investigation of Lee’s drug use allegations however would proceed to analyze the 2 folks Lee had sued.
South Korea has strict anti-drug legal guidelines however has seen hovering drug-related offenses in recent times. Final week, the Nationwide Police Company mentioned it had detained about 17,150 folks over alleged unlawful drug manufacturing, smuggling, gross sales and makes use of this 12 months — a report quantity for a single 12 months.
South Korea has lengthy had the best suicide charge amongst developed international locations. It has additionally skilled a string of superstar suicides involving Ok-pop stars, distinguished politicians and enterprise executives. Specialists say malicious and abusive on-line feedback and extreme cyberbullying have been blamed for lots of the superstar suicides.
“Lee confronted some allegations however they haven’t been formally verified. However the media has been assertively reporting about Lee’s personal life … and I believe that’s one thing fallacious,” mentioned Kang Youn-gon, a media communication professor at Seoul’s Chung-Ang College.
Lee is survived by his actress spouse Jeon Hye-jin and two sons.
Final 12 months the nationwide 988 suicide hotline launched within the U.S. If it’s worthwhile to speak to somebody, name the suicide and disaster lifeline by dialing 988 or textual content “dwelling” to the disaster textual content line at 741741.
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