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Cinema manager makes ends meet during closures, sees hope as cinemas set to reopen

(People's Daily Online)    13:08, May 28, 2020

Cinemas in China have been closed for over 100 days over the fear of COVID-19. During this period Wu Xujie, a cinema manager, has found a way to earn a living by working as a deliveryman and filming his daily life while waiting for the re-opening of the cinema.

A film advertisement outside a cinema in Chaoyang district, Beijing (Photo/

The cinema he works for, located in Ningbo of East China's Zhejiang province, normally has an annual box office output of around 20 million yuan (about 2.8 million U.S. dollars).

In early 2020, the outbreak of COVID-19 brought China's film industry to a standstill, along with unforeseen troubles to employees. Wu and his colleagues had invested a lot of energy in preparing food, arranging films, and recruiting and training several part-time college students for the Spring Festival season, but unexpectedly, they ushered in a long "holiday".

Many workers of the film industry have begun to "change their careers,” some finding employment making face masks and others as deliverymen. After realizing that he should not remain low-spirited, Wu made a plan to make videos of his daily life while delivering goods.

Throughout his efforts, Wu hoped to maintain a positive attitude and cheer up his equally anxious colleagues, while also letting others see what the real life of cinemas and studio workers has become.

As a deliveryman, Wu delivered a variety of things, such as supermarket goods, digital products and a large volume of seafood.

"It is said that deliverymen work too hard, in addition to the windy and rainy days, they also have to work in scorching weather. I could only realize the hardship when I became one of them," said Wu.

Though he still yearns for the days when he worked in the cinema, small kindnesses have served as an encouragement. One day after Wu received a tip of 18.88 yuan from an anonymous customer, the customer service told him this was due to his good working attitude.

Every time Wu delivers food to his customers, he would say "enjoy your dinner", "thank you." In the past, he would always be patient to answer customers' questions, telling them "I hope you enjoy a happy movie time."

Wu Xujie is pleased to read the news on government guidelines that the cinema will be re-opening. "After waiting for more than 100 days, I can finally see the dawn," Wu shared in a social media chat group, adding that they should still be patient for further notice. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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