12 Jun – The film industry in China was shocked yesterday by the news of Bona Film Group Vice President's sudden death.
According to Variety, multiple Chinese media outlets reported that the death was an apparent suicide.
Huang Wei, who managed the group's cinema division, reportedly jumped from the 18th-floor offices of the company's headquarters in Beijing in the late morning of 10 June. He was 52.
Huang, whose previous works included chairman and general manager of rival exhibitor China Film Stellar, had been working in Bona since 2009.
Bona did not offer further details in its official statement, except to say that the company was in deep mourning and that Bona Film Group founder and chairman Yu Dong will lead the funeral committee for Huang's passing.
Chinese filmmakers such as Lu Chuan and Jia Zhangke have also expressed their condolences.
"My heart hurts for Huang Wei and for the industry," Lu posted on social media, while Jia stated that Huang's passing is "the sorrow of the industry."
Following news of the death, Jia is now urging China to reopen cinemas soon, as the country's nationwide closure has caused almost one million workers in the film industry to be out of jobs.
Like most film exhibitors in China, cinemas under Bona Film Group have been closed since January due to the pandemic. Its Malaysian branch, located at Resorts World Genting, also faced temporary closure since March and, as with other cinemas in the country, has yet to be given the green light to resume operation.
(Photo source: Bona Cinemas Malaysia's Facebook)