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(LEAD) Lee Jung-jae wins best drama actor at Emmys

Entertainment 12:04 September 13, 2022

(ATTN: ADDS comments in last two paras; CLARIFIES lead para; ADDS photo)

SEOUL, Sept. 13 (Yonhap) -- South Korean actor Lee Jung-jae was awarded best drama series actor for his performance in the global TV sensation "Squid Game" at this year's Primetime Emmy Awards, becoming the first non-English speaking performer to win the prestigious prize.

At the ceremony for the 74th edition at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Monday (U.S. time), Lee was named Outstanding Lead Actor In a Drama Series, beating Jason Bateman from "Ozark," Brian Cox and Jeremy Strong from "Succession," Bob Odenkirk from "Better Call Saul" and Adam Scott from "Severance."

Lee became the first non-English performer and South Korean actor to win an Emmy, one of the four major American awards for performing arts and entertainment.

In "Squid Game," Lee plays the role of Gi-hun, a down-on-his-luck middle-aged man drawn to a mysterious competition of traditional Korean kids' games that reward the only survivor with 45.6 billion won (US$33 million) in prize money.

In this Reuters photo, Lee Jung-jae accepts the award for Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series for "Squid Game" at the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, California, on Sept. 12, 2022. (Yonhap)

In an acceptance speech, the actor thanked director Hwang Dong-hyuk for creating the series that was accepted by audiences all over the world and Korean fans for supporting him.

"Thank you to director Hwang for making realistic problems we all face come to life so creatively on the screen with the great script and amazing visuals," he said. "I want to share this amazing honor with my fans, friends and family in Korea."

This image provided by Netflix shows a scene from "Squid Game." (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

brk@yna.co.kr
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