South Korea’s animation industry was barely a blip on the radar when the TV animation series “Pororo the Little Penguin” debuted 10 years ago. But it didn’t take long before the country became the world’s fifth largest producer of animation based on the skyrocketing popularity of the series.
The TV series has since been exported to 120 countries around the world while the penguin character Pororo has remained as an unrivaled favorite among Korean toddlers and preschoolers.
To support the great advances of the industry, the Seoul Metropolitan Government said Thursday it plans to build a 3.2 billion won ($2.9 million) Korean animation museum in the Myeong-dong area, and transform a nearby street into a tourist destination for locals and foreign tourists who are interested in TV animation and comic books.
The authority is now looking for 200 square meters near the Seoul Animation Center on the hillside of Mount Nam in the Myeong-dong area, officials said.
The museum will focus on quality over quantity, according to a city official.
“We plan to create a place inside the museum where families and couples as well as children can watch TV animation series and talk about them. Rather than trying to make the building big, we’ll focus on creating an environment in which visitors can become familiar with animation,” the official said.
The authority hopes that the envisioned “animation street” will eventually turn into a place for flea markets for trading animation-related goods and exhibitions of animated works by individual artists or private firms, officials said. (Yonhap News)