In the recent months, just as a series of unfortunate events happened in the political and social sphere around the world, in the Chinese fan / cyber world, some evil rumors around our favorite-Kai started too. What started it was Kaikai’s recounts of his past on a few interviews, in which he talked about the time before he decided to pursue his dreams. One of the fiercest disputes happened around his experience at the Xinhua Bookstore. Here’s a short version of that story: Going a little back in time, Kaikai remembered a night shift at the Xinhua Bookstore, where he worked after high school graduation. During his shift, suddenly, a truck fully loaded with books that were bound in thick brown papers arrived at the bookstore. He was told to unload the books into the warehouse of the bookstore, as the truck had to go back. Being alone on this shift, faced with what he roughly estimated to be 15t of books, it took him his entire shift to slowly move all those books into the warehouse. That was when he realized that if he stayed at the bookstore, all he will ever do this life is moving books from point A to point B. He then handed in his resignation, and started on his journey to pursue his dream of becoming an actor.
Back to the present. The main point of controversy to this story, and the source of the rumor, was whether it really was possible for him to heave 15t of books alone in one night (or less even). Apparently the most enthusiastic disputers even did calculations on that, and based on the conditions and assumptions they used, Wang Kai lied about having moved 15t of books alone. As expected, a fan war started, though two surprising turns took place: One was, that a number of bookstores on Weibo, who were not related to Wang Kai or his company in any way, jumped into the dispute and provided explanations to how it is possible for Wang Kai to do it, based on how their own bookstore operated (i.e. using other tools for help etc.).
While the disputes still continued, not many days later, on January 11, 2017, an interesting tag appeared on Weibo, which started to spread like wildfire, with many non-Wang-Kai-fans chipping in too: „Wang Kai Fans 15t Charity Book Donations Relay“, a charity event that was to donate 15t of books & libraries to children in more distant and less prosperous regions of China, with each 1000 books accounting for one library to be built, with the minimum donated entity to be 5 books for around 32.50 Yuan (about the price for a Starbucks coffee in China), and all the libraries named after Wang Kai’s previous roles.
So what happened? How did a case of fan war suddenly jump over to charity?
The story went like this: Angered by the rumor and conspirators, a group of Wang Kai fans decided to donate 15t of books. After they inquired about the price of the books with one of the bookstores who helped clarify in this incident, they were disappointed to know that 15t of books roughly equalled 60,000 books, of which they could only afford 2000 through joint efforts, which they bought, and donated money to start construction of 2 libraries ahead. When they voiced their idea in their group chat however, supporters of the idea quickly gained, planning and contact with the bookstore were soon established. The bookstore put experienced employees on the project, who have gained experiences in a lot of book donations of this kind, to help organize suitable book lists, logistics etc. for the event, and even had their IT support create a special page for the Wang Kai fans’ charity event.
Yet, what they did not expect was the fierceness of people’s kindness that was to come: The first 6t took 2hrs, picking up pace as the event went on, reaching the goal of 15t in just 3 more hours. The website of the charity event broke down numerous of times in between because of the huge traffic it received, many kind donators complained about not being able to open the website, but that did not stop anyone from joining the event and continue donating even as the website repeatedly cracked down. In fact, fans of other celebrities, „neutral passersby“, being touched by this event, also jumped in enthusiastically to pass on the love.
The event took exactly 5hrs until the 15t limit was reached. A total of 62500 books (15.306t) were donated by 4195 people, with many more who wanted to join in but were too late, as the gates to the donation have already closed. Cries of not being to join in, and cheers of having accomplished such a wonderful event filled Weibo.
Most people were surprised at how fast the aim of the event was accomplished, even the organizers themselves didn’t expect it to be done in 5hrs, they expected to slowly fill the gap themselves in the span of a few weeks, which is also why they are still trying to contact schools to which they want to donate the libraries. The fans who organized the event however, gave a public statement to publish briefings on the progress of the charity event from here and on the construction of the libraries. The website shows 8 libraries that have already been assigned to schools.
The red marks show the libraries that have already found schools where they will finally be built. Ji Bai Library (Ji Bai, When A Snail Falls in Love), Fan Chuan Library (Fan Chuan, Railroad Tigers), Tang Chuan Library (Tang Chuan, Suspect X), Ming Cheng Library (Ming Cheng/Ah Cheng, The Disguiser), Zhao Qiping Library (Zhao Qiping/Dr. Zhao, Ode To Joy), David Farm Library (Wu Dawei/David, Half the Sky), ChengRan Library (Ming Cheng, The Disguiser; Li Xunran, Love Me If You Dare), Jingyan Library (Xiao Jingyan/Prince Jing, Nirvana in Fire), Azure Porcelain Library (Ming Cheng, codename: Azure Porcelain, The Disguiser). The fans are still contacting schools to donate the remaining libraries to.
Just yesterday, one of the regional newspapers informed the world about a library in the rural areas, named „Yidu“ (from Chen Yidu, the male lead character of the idol drama Stay With Me, Kaikai’s role), with more than 1300 books, donated by Wang Kai’s fans. More and more libraries with the names of Wang Kai’s roles will slowly appear one by one, all over China.
This is not the first charity event that Wang Kai fans started. As we have reported previously, in the names of his roles, roads to rural regions of the country have been donated before. Other than Ming Cheng Road, Jingyan Road, another four roads have already finished construction, spreading love and giving a helping hand to those in need, at the same time, bringing the characters that Wang Kai portrayed to reality. This is their way of confessing and proving their love to Wang Kai.
This book donation relay event, too, is a confession to Wang Kai: It was 15t of books, which awakened Wang Kai’s desire and determination to pursue his dream. Now, more than a decade later, the Chinese Wang Kai fans have donated 15t of books to school children in less prosperous regions of the country, to light a lantern on their way of finding their dreams and that leads them towards their future. More than ten years ago, 18-year-old Wang Kai moved 15t of books alone at night, in the present day, his fans take over these books and hand them to the people who needs them the most. This is a love confession that transcends time, have you received their voices Wang Kai?
Extra: One wonders what 18 year old Wang Kai would think if he saw that the 15t of books that took him all night to move go away faster than he could move them…
Extra 2: In a recent interview, Wang Kai was asked about his projects for this year, and he replied “Just Ode To Joy season 2 so far. …I need to hurry and find more projects to start filming 😂”, to which his fans replied on Weibo “yes, please do so, or else we soon won’t have enough names to name the libraries that we have yet to build.” So Wang Kai, what do you think?