SBS TV to end ‘Running Man’ in February amid casting mishap 2016/12/16 19:29

December 16, 2016

SEOUL, Dec. 16 (Yonhap) — SBS TV’s popular variety show “Running Man” will be wrapped up once and for all in February amid an audience backlash over its producers’ botched communication with cast members.

In an emergency meeting Friday, the cast members and production team reached an agreement to close the show in February while keeping the current members by then, the network said.

Since its opening in 2010, the show has enjoyed pan-Asia popularity. But it is now forced to meet an abrupt end due to recent missteps.

On Wednesday, SBS announced that Kang Ho-dong, a popular show host and former traditional Korean wrestling champion, would take part in season 2 that it said was expected to start in January. But bigger news for many fans was that two popular original members, Song Ji-hyo and Kim Jong-kook, would leave the show.

However, surprising reports emerged soon after that the two had not been directly informed of their departure but learned it through media reports.

The next day, Kang’s management issued a statement in which he backtracked on his decision to join the show, saying that he didn’t want to make anyone “uncomfortable.” Later that day, the network issued an official apology to the two stars and fans for the debacle.

Despite the apology, it faced mounting criticism from fans for what they feel was inconsiderate, careless acts, leading to the decision to close the show.

This image shows the logo for "Running Man."

This image shows the logo for “Running Man.”