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Monday, June 24, 2024

Byun Hee-bong, veteran actor known for ‘The Host,’ dies at 81

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Veteran actor Byeon Hee-bong [YONHAP]
Veteran actor Byeon Hee-bong [YONHAP]

Actor Byun Hee-bong has died aged 81 on Monday.

He had been suffering from pancreatic cancer, which had relapsed recently.

Born on June 8, 1942, in South Jeolla’s Jangseong County, Byun began his acting career on stage and debuted on-screen in 1966 as broadcaster MBC’s voice actor.

He subsequently starred in dozens of drama series, including “First Republic” (1981), “500 Years of Joseon Dynasty: Seol Jung Mae” (1984–85), “Dazzling Dawn” (1995) and “Hur Jun” (1999–2000).

He has also acted in three of director Bong Joon-ho’s films: “Barking Dogs Never Bite” (2000), “Memories of Murder” (2003) and “The Host” (2006).

Byeon received the Most Popular TV Actor award at the 1985 Baeksang Arts Awards and the Best Male Supporting Actor award at the 2006 Blue Dragon Film Awards.

BY LEE JIAN [lee.jian@joongang.co.kr]