Taiwan TV host blames S. Korean reality shows for Godfrey Gao death

Jacky Wu says Korean reality shows responsible for Canadian-Taiwanese actor’s recent passing

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TV star Jacky Wu (Facebook photo)

TV star Jacky Wu (Facebook photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan TV entertainment star Jacky Wu (吳宗憲) said in an interview on Tuesday (Dec. 3) that South Korean TV shows should be blamed for the recent passing of Canadian-Taiwanese actor Godfrey Gao (高以翔).

Following Gao's death from a heart attack while filming the Chinese TV show "Chase Me" last Wednesday (Nov. 27), an outraged public has called out Zhejiang Television for putting its contestants through extreme physical labor without providing them with enough rest. Fans have also raised questions about the legitimacy and safety of reality TV.

On the set of New Year special "Popular New Year Condo 3.0" (大熱門過年公寓3.0) with comedians Ou Han-sheng (歐漢聲) and Hank Chen (陳漢典), Wu said he was in Shanghai when the tragic news broke. He claimed that South Korean reality TV shows are responsible for Gao's death since they provided bad examples for their Chinese re-makes, reported UDN.

The variety show host said he was asked to climb thousands of stairs twice during one Chinese reality show, and he had to later communicate with the production team about boundaries. Wu proceeded to urge young celebrities to protect themselves and understand their own capabilities.

Despite Wu's remarks against South Korean entertainment, Taiwanese Internet celebrity Chen Yee (陳沂) said in a Facebook post that Wu was afraid to criticize China and used South Korea as a scapegoat. Taiwanese netizens also pointed out that "Chase Me" was actually a revision of U.S. TV show "American Ninja Warrior," reported Liberty Times.