David Chang won $1 million for his charity, the Southern Smoke Foundation

By Eric Todisco
November 30, 2020 09:40 AM
Advertisement

Who Wants to Be a Millionaire finally has its first celebrity winner!

David Chang, celebrity chef and host of Netflix's Ugly Delicious, made history during Sunday night's episode as the first celebrity contestant to win the ABC game show's top prize of $1 million.

Chang, 43, won the money for his charity, the Southern Smoke Foundation, a crisis relief organization for people in the food and beverage industry.

The big victory came after Chang was faced with the nail-biting final question, which asked, "Although he and his wife never touched a light switch for fear of being shocked, who was the first president to have electricity in the White House?"

Chang was given the options of Ulysses S. Grant, Chester A. Arthur, Benjamin Harrison and Andrew Johnson. He then opted to use the phone-a-friend lifeline to enlist the help of his pal, ESPN anchor Mina Kimes.

"This is terrifying," Chang told host Jimmy Kimmel. "She's so much smarter than I am though. And she knows this stuff."

He added, "I didn't do well enough in school and I was a terrible student — that's why I became a chef."

David Chang
| Credit: John Fleenor/ABC
David Chang
| Credit: John Fleenor/ABC

As Chang and Kimes deliberated over the answer, Kimmel reminded them that no celebrity has ever won the $1 million in the past two decades the show has been on the air.

If Chang answered wrong, his current $500,000 would drop down to $32,000. If he guessed right, he would walk away with $1 million.

Ultimately, Chang went with Kimes' advice and guessed Harrison as his final answer — which Kimmel eventually revealed was correct.

As Chang celebrated, he was presented with the $1 million check by writer and director Alan Yang.

"I can't believe this!" Chang said in excitement.

David Chang
| Credit: John Fleenor/ABC

After the celebration, Chang and Kimmel decided to call back Kimes to let her know that she assisted the celebrity chef in his history-making win.

"Finally, my college education is justified!" Kimes said.

Kimmel took over the hosting gig for Who Wants to Be a Millionaire in April after Regis Philbin hosted the show from 1999 to 2002. Between Philbin and Kimmel, Meredith Viera, Terry Crews, Chris Harrison and several others have stepped in to lead the show.

Who Wants to Be a Millionaire airs Sundays (9 p.m. ET) on ABC.