Promotional material of We Are All Alone. (Photo: Sina Weibo)
Chinese netizens took to social media to pay tribute to the late Chinese-Canadian actor Godfrey Gao after the last TV drama he filmed, We Are All Alone, was released on popular Chinese streaming platform iQiYi on Monday night.
A 35-year-old born on the island of Taiwan, Gao died after suffering cardiac arrest while filming a sports entertainment show for the Zhejiang TV Station (Zhejiang STV) in November 2019 in Ningbo, East China's Zhejiang Province.
The hashtag for the new drama had earned 590 million views on China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo as of Tuesday afternoon.
In the drama, Gao plays the role of a lawyer who has a complicated romance with a beautiful star agent played by actress Qin Lan.
At the end of the first episode, an 8-minute-long memorial about Gao was played.
In the video, Gao gives gifts to fans who are visiting him while filming the drama and takes a group photo with them. His kind behavior warmed the hearts of many Chinese netizens.
"Although I am not a fan of his, his gentle nature and kindness shown to his fans touched me a lot. It is a shame that we have lost such a good celebrity," one Chinese netizen posted on Sina Weibo.
Many Chinese netizens express their sorrow over the star's death and criticized Zhejiang STV for its response to his death.
"I couldn't stop my tears when I watched his drama. The drama is out but we still haven't received an honest apology from Zhengjiang STV," one netizen posted on Sina Weibo.
According to reports, the program's producer said in a statement on Sina Weibo that they provided Gao with emergency medical attention before sending him to a hospital, where he died after several hours.
However, many Chinese netizens who doubt the producer's statement have questioned why the TV station did not react more quickly after Gao collapsed during filming and then delayed their response to the whole incident.
The Academy Awards held in February also paid tribute to Gao during its In Memoriam montage.