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Godfrey Gao (1984 – 2019), “The Mortal Instruments” actor

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Gao was best known for playing Magnus Bane in 2013's "The Mortal Instruments: CIty of Bones"

Godfrey Gao was a Taiwanese-Canadian actor best known for playing Magnus Bane in the 2013 film “The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.” Gao largely worked in Taiwanese and Chinese movies and television shows, with film roles including “Wedding Bible,” “Love Is a Broadway Hit,” and his most recent, 2019’s “Shanghai Fortress.” On TV, he was well-known in Asia for shows including “Bull Fighting” and “Remembering Lichuan.” He was filming the Chinese game show “Chase Me” at the time of his death. Also a model, Gao became the first Asian model for Louis Vuitton in 2011.

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Died: November 27, 2019 (Who else died on November 27?)

Details of death: Died in Ningpo, China of cardiac arrest at the age of 35.


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Gao on basketball, his first love: “I grew up watching Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant, and wanted to be a professional athlete. It didn’t pan out but I guess it worked out for the best. When Asian players like Yao Ming, Yi Jianlian, and Jeremy Lin started excelling in the game, my heart swelled with pride. In a sense, they were fulfilling my dream of making it big in the game I loved.” —from a 2016 interview with Men’s Folio

What people said about him: “I am shocked and heartbroken to hear of Godfrey Gao’s untimely passing. He was a pioneer in the Asian community that stretched our imaginations on what was possible in the industry. To the original Magnus who left us way too soon, you left an impression on us that’ll last forever.” —actor Harry Shum, Jr.

“My heart is absolutely shattered. Godfrey left us far too soon and in far too tragic of a way.” —actor Simu Liu

“RIP Godfrey Gao. Kindest guy I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with.” —actor Kevin Zegers

Full obituary: People

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