The family of South Korean star Lee Sun-kyun bid farewell to him in a private funeral, shutting out the cameras that stalked him in his final months while he was under investigation for drug use.
The entertainment industry has come to a standstill, with several events cancelled, as former colleagues come forward to remember Lee. On Friday, his family mourned his passing along with his close friends and colleagues, after asking Korean media to stop making “painful and sudden” visits to Lee’s home, agency and funeral.
His final notes to his wife, which were criticized by the Korean media for being made public, CCTV footage of the last trip he took, replays of his last public appearance for police questioning the day before he died – all of them have been watched millions of times on YouTube.
The 48-year-old actor was found dead in a car in Seoul on Wednesday – police believe he committed suicide. This is a shocker for the country where he rose to fame during his more than 20 year career, before he achieved international fame in the smash hit film Parasite.
As well as sympathy and sadness, there is also anger at the relentless public scrutiny many believe he has endured since October when police began questioning him. Outside of South Korea, there was shock that a drug investigation into a celebrity could lead to such a tragic scandal.