New twist in O’Keefe replacement saga
Past contestants of The Chase Australia may be denied their winnings amid former host Andrew O'Keefe's ongoing assault case.
Larry Emdur was named the new host of the Channel 7 competition over the weekend, but according to The Australian, the network has already filmed a handful of episodes still featuring O'Keefe.
Pre-recorded episodes may need to be dumped as O'Keefe's domestic violence charges against ex-partner Dr Orly Lavee play out in court, with sources describing the situation as "fluid".
Given the show's contract outlines the network only pays contestants prize money when their episode goes to air, those who won with O'Keefe at the helm may end up with nothing.
Channel 7 did not respond to news.com.au's request for comment.
Larry Emdur was announced as his replacement over the weekend, with the star saying he saw the move as an "exciting new challenge in my career when I was probably thinking more about winding down". The Australian reports Emdur's episodes will begin filming in March.
According to TV Blackbox, O'Keefe's contract with Channel 7 finished at the end of 2020.
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Meanwhile, O'Keefe's lawyer has indicated he will plead guilty to the assault allegations if the charge is not dismissed under mental health, with the former Channel 7 star remaining an "involuntary" patient at the Prince of Wales Hospital. He is understood to have been battling mental health issues for a decade along with repeated admissions to rehabilitation clinics.
The former The Chase Australia and Deal Or No Deal host, 49, was arrested in Randwick at 3.30am on January 31, about four hours after police allege he assaulted Dr Lavee in her nearby apartment.
The father-of-three, who lives in Paddington, was charged with one count of common assault and released on bail, and an interim apprehended violence order was granted on behalf of Dr Lavee.
A hearing has been set for April to deal with his charge of common assault, where his lawyer will argue the charge should be dismissed.
According to The Daily Telegraph, police will allege O'Keefe punched Dr Lavee in the face, pulled her hair, kicked her in the back of her legs and spat on her.
Originally published as New twist in O'Keefe replacement saga