Former Mr HK Matthew Ko leaves TVB after 9 years: "I don't want to play the role of a molester anymore"

12 September 2014 / 2 years 1 month ago

In 2005, Matthew Ko won the first Mr Hong Kong pageant and subsequently signed a 8-year contract with TVB.

Nine years later, he decided to leave the company after an unlucky streak in his career, according to Asianpopnews.

Ko, 30, left the station after years of playing sex maniacs and rapists, said Apple Daily.

He said in an interview: "I don't know why I had to play a lot of roles in which I assaulted women."

According to ST Communities, two of the lowest points, he said, were playing a conman who molests an elderly woman on Ghost Dragon Of Cold Mountain, a recent period drama, and discussing haemorrhoids on a talk show.

"I really didn't want to do it, but I felt I had to as an artist who had signed a contract," he said. Asked why he joined TVB in the first place, he said:

"I liked watching TVB series when I was in Canada, and so I came to Hong Kong to join the Mr Hong Kong paegeant. I thought I could fulfill my dream of becoming an actor and was thrilled when people knew me. TVB offered me an attractive contract and I signed the eight-year contract without thinking."

He said he had a lot of jobs at the start of his career, and a big break when he was cast as the second leading man in the 2009 period drama, Man In Charge. The Hong Kong-born, Canada-bred actor, who does not have a good command of Chinese, said he worked hard and went to bed holding scripts.

But he did not measure up to producers' expectations, and "many producers were afraid to work with me".

He said he took acting classes and felt he was improving, but he had fewer and fewer assignments.

Ko's monthly salary was about HK$25,000 (S$4,000). In his fifth year, he was told he had not been doing well. The station froze his pay and added a year to his contract, he said.   

Despite putting in efffort, he did not land many new roles and had to play many recurring ones -- a molester. 

Ko said: "I do not understand. I acted as a molester so many times.

"I gave them nine years of my time and they didn't try to retain me or raise my pay until the last year. So I'm leaving in a state of unhappiness and melancholy."

Matthew Ko has a few agencies approaching him in Beijing, where he hopes to get a breakthrough.

Matthew Ko
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