Miao Pu should become the first film star in mainland China
to receive a private jet license.
It was a blowout year for your career in 2009 and you were very busy. How did you spare enough time for flying lessons?
I just clung to it. I already have my student pilot's license so I can fly both here and abroad. When I have the time, my assistants help me contact private airports so I can get airtime.
So you haven't got your private pilot license (PPL) yet?
Not yet. My aviation academy has had some difficulties. But even after I get my PPL, the strict private flying conditions in Beijing mean it won't be easy to get a chance to fly.
When did you first dream about flying and how did you turn it into a reality?
That's a long story. When I was a teenage girl, I always dreamed about flying. When my financial condition permitted me, I applied to an aviation school in Beijing. That was in April 2007. I believe in following your heart, not waiting until you are too old to make your dreams come true. For me, what satisfied me the most about flying was that you could control everything. But now my sense of responsibility has increased too. If you are a pilot, you are responsible for passenger security. I don't want my friends trembling behind me when I am steering the plane.
What's the first challenge you encountered?
The medical exam. I still remember the morning when I entered the Beijing commercial aviation general hospital with other applicants, all of them young boys.
A trainee pilot needs a good physical condition and we were all very nervous. If just one part of the medical exam wasn't satisfactory, you would never become a pilot. For example, you can't be short-sighted or have big scars on your body.
The result came out the same day. When the doctor told me I was physically qualified, I was so excited.
How did you handle the other examinations?
I had to finish the theory courses on the ground first, and then the school arranged my flying courses. To be honest, as a graduate of an art college, the aviation theory courses were very difficult for me. There were nine courses in total including meteorology, aerodynamics, and the principles of flight. Because I still had to work in films and TV dramas, my school arranged instructors to teach me privately.
The schedule usually meant that I woke up early at 6 am, jogged for half an hour and then went to school. I spent the whole day learning. You can't imagine how many books I read. When I piled them up, they almost reached my waist. I have been never so desperate in my whole life; I thought I was too stupid to pass those tests.