‘Parasite’ Actor Lee Sun-kyun Dies Amid Drug Use Allegations


Lee Sun-kyun, the South Korean actor who rose to international fame after starring in the Oscar-winning film “Parasite,” was found dead in Seoul on Wednesday. He was 48.

Mr. Lee had recently been under police investigation on suspicion of illegal drug use, and he denied the accusations. The police said they were investigating the death as a suicide.

The police found Mr. Lee’s body in a parked vehicle in central Seoul at just before 11 a.m., according to a spokesman at Seongbuk Police Station, the district station in Seoul that is investigating his death. They found the body after he had been reported missing earlier in the day.

Mr. Lee was best known internationally for his performance in “Parasite,” a 2019 thriller in which he played the head of a wealthy family in whose house much of the movie takes place. That film won four awards at the Academy Awards in 2020, including for best picture, the first non-English movie to win the award.

Police investigating a vehicle in which the body of Mr. Lee was found in central Seoul on Wednesday.Credit…Yonhap, via Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

If you are having thoughts of suicide, call or text 988 to reach the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline or go to for a list of additional resources. Go here for resources outside the United States.

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