Box office plummets as Chinese avoid crowds amid coronavirus outbreak

2020-01-25 16:19:58Xinhua Editor : Mo Hong'e ECNS App Download

China's box office saw a substantial drop amid the outbreak of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus.

The revenue on the Chinese Lunar New Year's Eve, which fell on Friday this year, raked in only around 3 million yuan (about 430,000 U.S. dollars), or less than one-tenth of last year's figures, according to the China Movie Data Information Network Saturday.

The seven-day Lunar New Year holiday is traditionally a big time for the country's box office, one of the largest in the world.

But ahead of this year's holiday, the new coronavirus pneumonia broke out first in the central Chinese city of Wuhan and then quickly spread across the country. By the end of Friday, a total of 41 people had died and 1,287 cases had been confirmed in 30 provincial-level regions.

The public is urged to avoid crowds and stay at home as the battle against the outbreak intensifies.

Seven films scheduled for the holiday had their release at the big screens suspended. "Lost in Russia" moved its screening online.

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