Producer Kim Tae Ho of Infinite Challenge revealed that they were asked by the government on multiple occasions to propagate government policies.
Infinite Challenge was an extremely popular variety show that aired for 13 years from April 2005 to March 2018.
Due to its popularity, even the management couldn’t do much to influence the show. However, Kim Tae Ho confessed that the government wanted to propagate government policies through Infinite Challenge.
“Because of its popularity even our company couldn’t change the content of our show. But the government wanted to propagate government policies through the show. The ‘globalization of Korean food’ of 2010 was an item we were already planning, so we received support from the Korea Agro-Fisheries & Food Trade Corp. but there are also many items that we refused as well.” ㅡ Kim Tae Ho
One item that they refused was former president Park Geun Hye’s “creative economy”. They rejected the request for 1 year but eventually, Kim Tae Ho became afraid for his seniors worrying that they may get hurt if they continued to refuse. Luckily, the issue was put to sleep when the Blue House administration was moved to another department.
“However, I thought my seniors would get hurt if we continued to refuse. I thought the situation would resolve if I was punished for refusing orders. But luckily, we were able to move on when the (Blue House) administration moved to another department.” ㅡ Kim Tae Ho
Kim Tae Ho had participated in all MBC strikes and as a result, Infinite Challenge was even temporarily canceled in 2012 and 2017. Since the 2012 strike, however, he has been focusing all of his energy on working rather than fighting back after seeing his colleagues being transferred from their positions.
“The colleagues who were forced to leave for going against management sent me encouraging messages such as ‘I’m able to endure thanks to Infinite Challenge‘ whenever we refused unreasonable requests from the management or the government. At those times, I was determined to try even harder.” ㅡ Kim Tae Ho
When asked why he was sticking with MBC and whether he wasn’t tempted by a higher salary, he responded that being recruited in such a way will hinder the quality of his work.
“I don’t want to be too greedy with money right now. I believe that if you do your best, money will follow. If I move to another company for a higher salary, I’d have to begin with an indebted mind and the content production will become second on my priority list. I decided to take a break from Infinite Challenge to refresh my mind and come back with a new story to tell, and I don’t want to ruin this opportunity.” ㅡ Kim Tae Ho