Korean Veteran Actor Byun Hee Bong Dies at 81

Byun Hee Bong in Pinocchio

In a somber turn of events, veteran actor Byun Hee Bong succumbed to his battle with pancreatic cancer at the age of 81 on September 18, 2023.

His career spanned decades, and his versatile acting skills earned him a special place in the hearts of viewers worldwide. He started at the age of 24 as a voice actor for MBC and transitioned into acting in 1971. Since then, he has starred in a lot of movies and dramas and has taken part in many of renowned director Bong Joon Ho‘s films.

Perhaps, many would remember their collaboration in the 2006 film The Host where Byun Hee Bong’s portrayal of a father desperately searching for his daughter in the midst of a monstrous crisis showcased his acting prowess and earned him an award. Their last collaboration was in 2017 for the film Okja.

As for me, I fondly remember him as the grandfather in the K-drama Pinocchio who took Lee Jong Suk’s character under his care. Since then, he has been a familiar face in K-dramaland often playing a quintessential grandfather figure. As of now, details of his memorial have not been announced. We send our condolences to the late actor’s bereaved family.

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