It was early this week that reports of a Canadian actor dying of cosmetic surgeries to look like BTS member Jimin began circulating worldwide. But after all that media attention, the reports turned out to be a hoax. The actor, identified as Saint Von Colucci, may have never existed in the first place.
According to an article published by Variety, the news of his death began making rounds online when Daily Mail reported it on April 24.
The report, which Daily Mail pulled from its website days after, was sourced from two press releases sent by a group called The Hype Company PR to journalists, with the use of a bot called Nylas.
The bot, according to Variety, scraped email addresses from the online portfolio website MuckRack.
In the press releases sent by the group, the 22-year-old Colucci was described as the son of Brazilian supermodel Adriana Lima and Geovani Lamas, who the press releases claimed to be the CEO of investment company IBG Capital.
While Lima is indeed a model working for brands like Victoria's Secret, her eldest child is only 12 years old. Lamas, meanwhile, had little online presence and is, in fact, not the CEO of IBG Capital that the press releases claimed him to be.
Colucci was further described as someone who's "always been insecure about his overall looks in Korea" and that he felt “discriminated against his Western traits." It was for these reasons that the actor decided to get cosmetic surgeries.
He was also reported to have undergone procedures costing up to $200,000 (P11.1 million) to look like Jimin for an upcoming K-drama and passed away hours after having surgery at the fictional “Seoul National Hospital."
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The press releases also included images allegedly taken before and after Colucci underwent the cosmetic surgeries, with one of the photos yielding a 75% result on Maybe’s AI Art detector.
Despite being introduced in the press releases as a singer-songwriter and an actor, Colucci had little presence on the internet. Although he has an Instagram page under the username @papaxxzy with photos that are mostly blurry and shows him wearing sunglasses, there are no links to his music and other projects.