Taiwanese comedian Chu Ke-liang dies at 70

PHOTO: The Straits Times

After a two-year struggle with terminal colorectal cancer, veteran Taiwanese comedian Chu Ke-liang has died at 70 from liver failure.

According to the National Taiwan University Hospital in Taipei, the actor died peacefully in his sleep at 5.08am.

"We hope he will continue to bring laughter in heaven," said the family, who released at statement around 7am.

The veteran entertainer was diagnosed with cancer in 2014 and had undergone surgery in October last year.

Chu is best known for his distinctive hairstyle, dubbed "toilet lid", and his quirky choice of clothing: a dinner jacket with a bowtie, bermuda shorts, black shoes and white socks.

His daughter, renowned singer Jeannie Hsieh, had reconciled with him two months ago. The two were estranged after Chu racked up gambling debts of close to NT$1 billion (S$46.5 million) in the late 90s.

Chu went into hiding before resurfacing in 2010 and took on a number of movies and TV shows, where he is best known for his coarse humour and slapstick comedy.

At a concert last year, Hsieh also revealed her father's complicated past and infidelities, among other allegations. Her father had then called her "poisonous and vicious".

Chu was married four times and leaves behind two sons and three daughters.

Thousands gather in Taiwan for veteran comedian Chu Ke-liang's festival funeral

  • A hearse decorated with flowers transports the coffin of late Taiwanese celebrity Chu Ke-liang during a funeral ceremony in New Taipei City on June 20, 2017.
  • Local residents stand next to a portrait of late Taiwanese celebrity Chu Ke-liang during a funeral ceremony in New Taipei City on June 20, 2017.
  • Pallbearers carry the coffin of late Taiwanese celebrity Chu Ke-liang from a local funeral parlor in New Taipei City on June 20, 2017.
  • Two men carrying crane-shaped effigies perform outside a funeral hall during a ceremony for late Taiwanese celebrity Chu Ke-liang at a local funeral parlor in New Taipei City on June 20, 2017.
  • Lion dancers and Lamborghinis took part in a massive funeral parade for one of Taiwan's best-loved television stars Tuesday, known for his crass jokes and trademark bowl haircut.
  • Residents and mourners gather to pay their last respects to late Taiwanese celebrity Chu Ke-liang at the hall of a local funeral parlor in New Taipei City on June 20, 2017.
  • Veteran Taiwanese comedian Chu Ke-liang died at 70 from liver failure on May 15, 2017.
  • He was battling with terminal colorectal cancer since 2014.
  • The actor died peacefully in his sleep at 5.08am.
  • Although he was diagnosed in 2014, he only underwent surgery late 2016.
  • Chu is best known for his distinctive hairstyle, dubbed "toilet lid", and his quirky choice of clothing: a dinner jacket with a bowtie, bermuda shorts, black shoes and white socks.
  • One of his daughters is renowned singer Jeannie Hsieh.
  • The two had reconciled few months before his death. The two were estranged after Chu racked up gambling debts of close to NT$1 billion (S$46.5 million) in the late 90s.
  • Chu went into hiding before resurfacing in 2010 and took on a number of movies and TV shows, where he is best known for his coarse humour and slapstick comedy.
  • At a concert last year, Hsieh also revealed her father's complicated past and infidelities, among other allegations.
  • Chu was married four times and leaves behind two sons and three daughters.

klim@sph.com.sg