Kang Soo-yeon death: Veteran Korean actor dies at 55 after suffering cardiac arrest

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Kang Soo-yeon was often honourifically nicknamed Korea’s ‘first world star’  (Getty)
Kang Soo-yeon was often honourifically nicknamed Korea’s ‘first world star’ (Getty)

Veteran Korean actor Kang Soo-yeon has died at the age of 55.

On Thursday (5 May), the Girls’ Night Out star was found in a state of cardiac arrest at her home in Apgujeong, Gangnam, Seoul.

She was rushed to the Gangnam Severance Hospital for treatment and died two days later of a cerebral hemorrhage, according to Variety.

Kang has been laid to rest at the Samsung Medical Centre in Seoul, and her funeral will take place on Wednesday (11 May), reported Korean website Soompi.

She was an internationally acclaimed star from the mid-1980s to the end of the 1990s, and was often honourifically nicknamed Korea’s “first world star”.

She began her acting career at a young age.

Her filmography contains many famous Korean movies such as Im Kwon-taek’s The Surrogate Woman, 2011’s Hanji, and 2013’s Juri.

For The Surrogate Woman, Kang was honoured with the Volpi Cup for Best Actress award at the 1987 Venice International Film Festival, as well as the Best Actress Award at the Nantes International Film Festival.

The achievement marked the first time a Korean actor had been given an award at a major international film festival.

From the early-2000s, Kang took years off between film appearances and switched to acting on the small screen, where she obtained moderate success for starring in 2001’s Ladies of the Palace.

After a nine-year gap, she was set to return to film a Netflix original called Jung_E, directed by Yeon Sang-ho. The film, which finished filming in January 2022, is slated for release later in the year.

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