SINGAPORE - Home-grown actor Aloysius Pang had been due to start shooting Channel 8 romantic drama My One In A Million next month (February) after Chinese New Year. He was slated to be the male lead alongside Carrie Wong and James Seah.
In a statement sent to The Straits Times, Ms Karen Yew, head of corporate marketing and communications at Mediacorp, said: "Aloysius' manager has informed us that he will need to focus on his recovery over a period of time. This will require us to recast his role in My One In A Million.
"Aloysius is a highly talented and professional actor and a joy to work with. Our doors will be open for him when he is ready and we look forward to his full and speedy recovery."
Corporal First Class (NS) Pang Wei Chong sustained injuries to his chest and abdominal areas during a military exercise in New Zealand, the Ministry of Defence said in a statement on Jan 21.
He has undergone two operations and is now in a stable condition, said Dr Teo Li Tserng, chief of trauma at Tan Tock Seng Hospital.
Dr Teo was asked by the Singapore Armed Forces to help with the management and recovery of Pang in New Zealand.
In a video recording sent to the media on Jan 21, Dr Teo said that Pang is "awake, alert, and breathing on his own, not requiring any mechanical ventilation".
His first abdominal operation was carried out last Saturday (Jan 19) at Waikato Hospital in Hamilton, the day the operationally ready national serviceman, 28, was injured while carrying out repair works inside the Singapore Self-Propelled Howitzer (SSPH) in New Zealand's Waiouru Training Area. It lasted more than five hours and he was being monitored in the high-dependency unit.
The follow-up operation was completed successfully at 11am Singapore time on Jan 21.
At a press conference held by Pang's management agency, NoonTalk Media, on Monday (Jan 21) afternoon, his manager Dasmond Koh said that the actor "bei ya shang (was crushed)", without giving further details.
He added in Mandarin: "Until Mindef completes and releases the full investigative report on what happened, it would not be right for us to say or speculate any more."
Koh, 46, was visibly upset and teared up a number of times. He will be flying out to New Zealand on Monday (Jan 21) night. Pang's parents and second elder brother are already headed there. His eldest brother will join the family on Tuesday (Jan 22).
Koh said: "Aloysius has spoken with his mother and I know that they talked a bit about work. He loves to work and he told his mum that he hopes to recover quickly so that he can return to work as soon as possible.
"However, I would prefer it if he gets adequate rest for at least six months. I don't actually know how much resting time he needs, but I would prefer him to take a lengthy break to recover."
Pang was named one of the top 10 most popular male artists at the 2016 Star Awards and clinched the Best Newcomer Award at the 2015 Star Awards.
A child star who started acting at age nine, he was one of eight young male stars picked by Mediacorp to form a new generation of male celebrities dubbed the Eight Dukes.