Directors call for better safety protocol on set after Eddie Garcia's death

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 21) — The untimely death of veteran actor and director Eddie Garcia should drum up attention for better workplace safety in production sets.

The Directors' Guild of the Philippines, Inc. (DGPI) made the call following the passing away of Garcia on Thursday. He slipped into a comatose state since June 8 after tripping on a loose wire during taping for a TV series.

"The DGPI believes that his tragic passing is a sad and urgent reminder to the film and television industries that safety protocols at work and on the set are of paramount importance," the elite circle of Filipino film directors said in a statement.

Initial reports said Garcia suffered a heart attack while on the set of a television series that Saturday afternoon. It was later on clarified that he fell to the ground and suffered a neck fracture. He passed away 4:55 p.m. of June 20, according to the Makati Medical Center. Television network GMA has since said it was looking into the absence of a medical team on the set.

DGPI also honored the multi-awarded actor and director, who has been inducted to the hall of fame of the Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences (FAMAS) Awards. The filmmakers' group called him as one of the greatest actors "in the history of Philippine cinema."

READ: Eddie Garcia movie to stream on Netflix

Garcia counts a 70-year legacy in the local entertainment industry, which the guild said includes "provocative" films which he directed such as Atsay (1976), Magdusa Ka (1986), and Imortal (1989).

"An iconic giant who will continue to influence generations of actors and filmmakers to come, Eddie Garcia and his immortal legacy shall be missed," DGPI added.

READ: Tributes pour in as industry mourns passing away of ‘icon’ Eddie Garcia

Garcia has been cremated Friday dawn, which was followed by a small gathering of family and friends who gave eulogies to send off the so-called acting legend, according to his stepson 1-PACMAN Party-list Rep. Michael Romero.

His wake will be open to the public beginning 2 p.m. of Friday until Sunday at the Heritage Memorial Park in Taguig City.