숭례문,지켜주지 못해 미안해...

" This writing was not written by me, the posted writing was written by Sang Joon Lee, who does not belong to any group. "

" 이 글은 본인이 쓴 글이 아니며, 소속을 알 수 없는 이 상준 님의 글을 올려놓은것 입니다. "

Korean Animation, Boom or Burst?

The History of Korean Animation and the analysis of recent animation

My Beautiful Girl, Mari, and Wonderful Days.


SangJoon Lee



In 2004, the Korean animation Oseam (2003) was announced as a recipient of a Grand Prix (Crystal Award) at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival in France, followed by My Beautiful Girl, Mari (2002), which had acquired the same award two years before. It was unexpected news since Oseam had been coldly ignored by both local patrons and critics. During the same festival, the Korean Animation Retrospective, which was called Special Program 2004: Honoring Korea, was held.[i] Five features and four short animations were invited among thirteen other short animations in official competition. Some critics made cynical remarks that the festival’s award was given not to Oseam but to Korean animation itself.[ii] 

Finally, the Korean animation industry had burst into the international market. Long awaited films such as My Beautiful Girl, Mari and Wonderful Days (2003) were released, and many more projects such as Aachi and Ssipak by J-Team and the full 3-D animation Ark by Digital Dream Studio are in the post-production stage.  Also, Audition, which is based on the best selling comic book, will be released in 2005.

Since 1994, when Korea’s first adult feature animation Blue Seagull (1994) entered the domestic theatrical animation market that had been almost forgotten since the 1970s, there were countless defiance to bring local viewers back to the theatre. However, those attempts continually proved to be failures. Although there are more than 160 animation studios in Korea, none of the studios were devoted entirely to domestic feature animation production. OEM (original equipment manufacturer) has been the production’s major revenue, but it led to creativity taking a back seat to original content as foreign animators dictated every detail to the last ?cell. A lack of experienced screenwriters and directors is the major obstacle to creating originality and signature styles of Korean animation.

However, Korean animation is getting through this time of transition. It is young, and being young means there are numerous opportunities. That is the reason we should pay attention to Korean Animation in spite of current disappointing results.

Throughout this paper, I will show how Korean animation has grown from the very beginning to the present, how government changed the status of animation from evil to the value-added industry. In addition, two recent Korean animations My Beautiful Girl, Mari, and Wonderful Days will be discussed, focusing on the aspects of industry and cultural identity.


The brief history and the government’s policy on Korean Animation

From 1958 to the end of the 1990s, nearly 40 years, Korea was well known to American, Japan, and European animation productions as the country of low-cost skilled animators to be hired to produce their animation. The Korean animation industry still produces thirty percent of the world’s animation, meaning it’s the third largest animation industry in the world, just behind the U.S. and Japan, making about 1,000 works a year.[iii] The statistics of the Korean Animation industry, which was published by the Ministry of Culture and Travel in 2002, indicate that there were 169 companies, 9,4029 skilled animators, and sales of 15,394 billion won (12 billion dollars) in 2001.[iv]  However, just 5 percent of the total sales came from domestic animation, including TV productions . The other 95 percent of the productions were contract jobs for North American, Japanese, and European animation houses.[v] John A. Lent describes, “A large part of Asia’s animation production since the 1960s has been tied to foreign interests attracted by stable and inexpensive labor. For nearly 40 years, Hollywood (as well as Canadian and West European) studios have established and maintained production facilities, first in Japan, then in South Korea and Taiwan.”[vi]

The history of Korean animation is short. It dates back to 1958, the year when the first Korean animation was produced, and there was no virtual golden age before the second half of the 1990s. However, with the recent support of government and the renaissance of Korean cinema, Korean animation is now well equipped to roar to the world.

Korean Animation: the beginning

An established theory of the first Korean animation was an advertisement for “Lucky Toothpaste,” in 1958. It was one year later when the first feature-length animation film screening, Peter Pan, was held in Seoul on June 13, 1957.

The tremendous box office success of Peter Pan stimulated local companies to consider animation as a new advertisement tool. Shin Dong-heon, who is one of the pioneers of the Korean animation industry, joined these lines, and made two memorable animated advertisements, “Jinro Soju” and “Dakpyo Ganjang” (Chicken Brand Soybean Sauce.)[vii] Due to their unexpected success in marketing, other animated advertisements of soaps, medicines, and drinks were produced. Shin Dong-hun, Yi Sangho, Han Seong-hak, Shin Neung-pa(Nelson Shin), Eom Do-sik, and Park Young-gil were the pioneers during this period. [viii]

The first feature-length Korean animation, Hong Gil Dong, was released in January 1967. It was produced and distributed by Segi Sangsa (Segi Company). Local viewers welcomed the animation. About 200,000 tickets were sold and it ranked third in the annual box office report of 1967.[ix] The Shin brothers (Shin Dong-heon and Shin Dong-woo), who directed Hong Gil Dong, made their second animation feature Hopiwa Chadolbawi (The Man of Tiger Skin and the Boy of Rock Stone) and it was released in August 1967.[x] 

   Segi Company kept investing in cell animation, and brought out six feature animations between 1967 and 1971, including the first Puppet animation Heungbu wa Nolbu (The Brothers Heungbu and Nolbu) in 1967.[xi]  Segi was the only company to produce feature animations until 1971.

However, the glorious success of Hong Gil Dong was not repeated. Most animation studios disappeared due to the high production costs and limited audiences.   

Thriving robot animations and government oppression during the military dictatorship

Still, local recognition on animation was just entertaining children during their summer and winter vacations. Feature animations were abandoned from the regular theatre, and altered to revival theatres and Mugigae Kuk-jang (Rainbow Theatre.)[xii] Most Science Fiction feature animations (Robot Animation) were produced during the 1970s to appeal Children who were wildly enthusiastic about Japanese robot animation Mazinga Z which aired on MBC TV in 1975.[xiii] Robot Taekwon V (1976), Taekwon Dongja Maruchi Arachi (Taekwon Kinds Maruchi and Arachi / 1976), and Byeolnara Samchongsa (Three Musketeers in Star Country / 1979) were among the most popular.[xiv]

In the 1980s, under the military dictator Chun Doo-hwan, the fifth republic government announced “Children Protection Policy,” and suppressed cartoons and animations using severe regulations. The government defined cartoons and animations as one of evils in Korean society, especially Science Fiction (Robot cartoons and animations) because they provide “empty and meaningless illusion”[xv] to children.[xvi]

As Kie-Un Yu indicates, the turning point of the Korean Animation industry was the Asian Games in 1986 and the Olympic games two years later, because of “partly to appease the thousands of foreign visitors expected, and the attraction of additional subcontracting businesses from abroad. Many animation companies were established in the late 1980s to meet these demands.”[xvii] Even though domestic feature animation lost its vitality with the reduction of the number of productions,[xviii] OEM contracts increased and most newly formed OEM productions such as AKOM, Saerom, and Dongseo Dongwha and Minha were established during those periods.

Blue Seagull and the rebirth of Korean Animation

The rebirth of Korean animation began with Blue Seagull, the first Korean adult animation, in 1994. Choi Min-soo and Eom Jung-wha, two Korean movie stars who became famous because of their sexual image, dubbed the voices. Despite its poor quality of pictures and colorizations, Blue Seagull enjoyed its high box office record of nearly a half million patrons nationwide.

The film proved that interest in animation was still alive. In 1995 and 1996, five feature animations were released in the domestic market; Hong Gil Dong Returned (1995) by Stone Flower Company, Red Hawk (1996) by Daiwon Animation Company, Hungry Best 5 (1996) by Young Production, and Armageddon (1996)  by Armageddon Production Committee.

However, except Hong Gil Dong Returned, the rest of the animations failed to appeal to local audiences. Subsequent animations such as Euijeok Imggeokjeong (Imggeokjeong the Righteous Gang / 1997), Jeonsa Ryan (The Last Warrior Ryan / 1997), Cheolin Sacheonwang (1999), and Gun Dress (2000) were commercial disasters.

Due to their failure to reflect Korean identity, they could not overcome the influence of Japanese anime and got labeled as a poor copy of Japanese anime. However, the Korean government began to reconsider cartoon and animation as a value-added business.

Recent policy of government support of Korean Animation

On January 18, 1995, the Ministry of Culture and Sports announced a “Fertilization Plan of the Animation Industry,”[xix] and at the same time they organized and supported an annual International Cartoon and Animation Festival (SICAF), which has been annually held since 1995. In addition, On March 15, 1995, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Trade and Industry, and the Tax Ministry agreed to change the status of animation from a “Service” to a “Manufacturing” industry, and animators received a 20 percent tax break.

But most government support was based on a superficial understanding of the animation industry, and the government wasted a huge amount of money to build a cartoon and animation center in Chuncheon, so called “ani-town,” and constructed 100 billion won (8.5 million dollar) budget Venture Visual Center to support animation/game products.[xx] These centers proved to be useless due to their inconvenient locations, bureaucratic approach, and wrong calculations of what animators really wanted.  

In 2002, the Korean Film Commision (KOFIC) announced their “domestic promotion program” and it included three programs to support domestic animation: Development Support for Feature Animation Films (Pilot Films); Animation Scenario Contests (established in 1999); and Production Support for Low-budget Animation Films.[xxi] In addendum, KOFIC revised them in 2003 with two new programs; Production Support for Student Animation Films and Production Support for Public Educational Animation Films.[xxii]

”Development Support for Feature Animation Films” provides 60 million won (50,000 dollar) each to four projects in order to make a pilot film that has a crucial need for investors. ”Production Support for Low-budget Animation Films” chooses two titles a year, and provides up to 3 billion won (250,000 dollar) per film or up to 50% of production costs, and up to 1 billion won per film for post-production related facilities. KOFIC’s programs for student and independent animation also give between 10 million won and 20 million won (7,500 ~ 15,000 dollar) to each project.[xxiii]

Since 1999, when KOFIC launched its first term, their policy to invigorate the domestic animation industry was to increase the number of films produced.[xxiv] It is far more realistic than just good looking policies done by other institutions, therefore, even though KOFIC recently has had trouble with the Ministry of Culture in its attempt to acquire the budget due to the recent economic downturn, Korean animation has at least one down to earth supporting program which actually helps the animation industry.


Case Study: the analysis of two recent Korean Animation films in the aspects of Industry and Cultural Identity.

Since the mid-1990s, the miraculous growth of the Korean film industry brought about a massive line of investors. Film production companies were attempting to expand their territory, and they turned their attention to animation.[xxv] Auteur animators such as Lee Sung-gang could create his animation My Beautiful Girl, Mari in this industrial background. In addition, with the help of the sudden prosperity of Internet businesses during the late half of the 1990s, investors were seeking to acquire digital contents, and hundreds of 3D animation and web-based game projects were invested in. The 50 billion won budget 3D animation Ark, similar size Run=Dim, and the 60 billion won (100 billion won by the time it was finished) Wonderful Days blasted off during that time.

Not a single one of the above animations, however, had success at the domestic box office. The most successful box office record among them was Wonderful Days, which brought 250,000 patrons (nationwide) to the theatre. Nevertheless, when compared to other feature films, this was a miserable result. Korean people, including theatre owners, still regard animation as children’s entertainment, therefore, animation producers are desperately looking for new marketing tools to attract adults to see their films, as well as prevail on theatre owners to exhibit animation at major venues.  

I will follow from the beginning to the releasing of two recent Korean animations My Beautiful Girl, Mari and Wonderful Days which show the industry, cultural identity, audience receptions, and future prospects of the Korean animation.

My Beautiful Girl, Mari: between auteur ambition and commercial strategies

In January 2002, the debut film of critically acclaimed animation director L Sung-gang, My Beautiful Girl, Mari, was released in eighteen theatres in Seoul. It had a budget of 21 billion won (1.8 million dollars) and took four years to complete from the first meeting with the producer Jo Seong-won in 1998.[xxvi]

My Beautiful Girl, Mari was the start line of the long-absent Korean auteur animation. Lee Sung-gang, who studied psychology at Yonsei University in Korea, made nine short animations between 1995 and 1998. Most of his works have been screened at prestigious international festivals such as Annecy, Ottawa, and Montreal. With his work Ashes in the Thicket (1998), he became the key figure in the Korean independent animation scene. From his first work Two Rooms (1995), he kept exploring the varieties of texture in computer-generated animation, and Ashes in the Thicket shows the finest result of his experiments with the highly complicated symbolic meanings which are hidden behind dark and gray images. 

After witnessing a UFO, a man is haunted by illusions of being torn apart by a strange power. He and his lover commit suicide but find it impossible to escape, even in the afterlife. In cold gray tones, the image of a man whose body is torn apart symbolizes the possible confusion of the individual identity in modern society. Like his previous works, all of these artistic and technical processes were done by the director himself.

My Beautiful Girl, Mari, which can be read as a psychological coming of age drama, is the story of a boy named Namwoo, who has lost his father and lives with his mother and grandmother in a secluded seaside village. He has feelings of loss. His only friend Junho will move to Seoul at the end of the summer vacation, his grandmother’s health is not in a good condition, and his mother is dating their family friend. One day, Namwoo and his cat Yeo are wandering around an abandoned lighthouse when Yeo runs inside. Namwoo discovers a mysterious marvel, and when he touches it, he gains access to a world of fantasy. In his fantasy, Namwoo encounters blooming jungles, cumulus clouds, an enormous but lovely dog, and a beautiful girl named Mari.

However, Lee Sung-gang’s fantasy is much different from Miyazaki Hayao’s Spirited Away (2001) and Disney’s conventional animation fantasies. Lee explains, “most of fantasies begin when protagonist enters the neverland, and his/her adventure started, finding treasures, falling in love… but the thing I want to tell is the growing up story of a boy. Fantasy is a kind of an element of maturity. He is not a sole master of fantasy. He accidentally came to the fantasy world like just passing by…”[xxvii]

Lee Seung-gang completed the first script in 1999, and it was far different from the released version. It was an omnibus film which consists of three stories of an adventurer who met the mysterious girl Mari in the midst of a jungle.[xxviii]

Three screenwriters were brought in and they worked together with Lee Seung-gang. After one year, the omnibus screenplay was transformed into the story of the boy Namwoo.

Siz Entertainment picked up the final script and invested 21 billion won with the help of I-pictures and one of Korea’s most powerful producers, TCHA Seung-jai of SIDUS.[xxix] Beginning in March of 1999, thirty-five highly skilled animators, using relatively simple graphic tools such as 3D Max, Photoshop, Illustrator, and Flash, completed this 100% digital animation in December 2001.[xxx]

I-pictures and TCHA knew how to attract local viewers and bring them into theatre, however, they actually didn’t have any experience with animated films. Their strategies were basically same with the same ones they used for live-action films: extensive advertising and opening on a large number of screens. In addition, they cast well-known Korean actors to dub the voices of the adult characters, such as Lee Byung-heon, Bae Jong-ok, and Ahn Sung-ki who has been regarded as a national actor in Korea.[xxxi]

My Beautiful Girl, Mari opened with two comparatively weak Korean films Bad Guy and A.F.R.I.K.A on January 11, 2002. However, it performed under expectations. In three weeks of screening, My Beautiful Girl, Mari earned only 54,404 patrons in domestic box office[xxxii] which is much less than the producers and journalists had expected.

Nonetheless, in June, the film was invited to the Annecy International Animated Film Festival in France as one of the official competition films for feature-length animation. It was the first time in Korean animation history that it was chosen by the prestigious animation film festival. And finally, it was awarded the Grand Prix.[xxxiii]

With its glorious achievement, the filmmaker and Siz Entertainment decided to re-release the film in one or two theatres in Seoul; however, Korean filmgoers still did not pay attention to this artistically mature film. Lee Seung-gang expressed his hope to make another feature-length animation; unfortunately, the commercial disasters of Korean animation including My Beautiful Girl, Mari, Wonderful Days (2003), and Oseam (2003) might be barriers to an auteur animator like Lee.

Wonderful Days: the birth of mega-budget blockbuster animation

In the Korean film industry, Wonderful Days is the child of excessive competition and the daydreaming in recent bubble investment in digital contents. The film started as a mild 30 billion won (2.5 million dollar) budget in 1998,[xxxiv] almost the same time when Lee Seung-gang’s My Beautiful Girl, Mari project began, and finally, with the high-risk decision made by Samsung venture capital, Wonderful Days spent a tremendous 100 billion won (8 million dollars) and was released in 46 theatres in Seoul (105 nationwide.)

Unfortunately, although every single person in the animation industry wished for the film’s commercial success, Wonderful Days proved to be one more disaster right after My Beautiful Gil, Mari. Merely 120,000 tickets sold in Seoul (250,000 in nation wide) meaning just 3 billion won profit. The film’s production company, Tin House, announced that CMC group in Taiwan purchased at 300,000 dollars as a minimum guarantee in 1999, and they hoped to sell the film to Japan and America at around 5-6 million dollars.[xxxv] However, if the film’s international selling performs under their expectations. Wonderful Days loses most of the film’s investment. 

In many ways, Wonderful Days resembles another box office flop, the Korean blockbuster film The Resurrection of Match stick girl (2001) which was directed by critically acclaimed filmmaker Jang Sun-woo.[xxxvi]

The Resurrection of Matchstick Girl was released in 2001 with the highest budget in Korean film history ever, 120 billion won (10 million dollars). However, this satirical distopian Sci-fi film, full of artistic ambitions, was coldly ignored by both critics and audiences. It earned a miserable 5 billion won in the domestic market, less than 5 percent of the film’s total budget. Like the aftermath of a hurricane, the film affected most big budget Korean films, and 70% of Korean big budget film projects were canceled between 2001 and 2002.

Ironically, it was not a 120 billion won budget when The Resurrection of Matchstick Girl was first planned. The original budget was an acceptable 30 billion won; however, with the artistic ambitions of the filmmaker and an unpredicted delay of filming led the film’s budget to be increased up to four times more. Most of the delays in the production period came from a lack of experience in making Science Fiction films. The filmmaker, special effect technicians, cinematographer, and even producers did not know the whole process of making a sci-fi film. All of them planned the schedule and made a budget by virtue of their imagination, and that was the reason for losing money.

Wonderful Days, even though it is an animation film, took the same path that The Resurrection of Matchstick Girl walked before. Wonderful Days’s original budget was 30 billion won, and its release date was summer of 2001.[xxxvii] But, by the time the film came out, the budget had climbed up to 100 billion won, and the opening date was July 2003. What happened to Wonderful Days?

The beginning of Wonderful Days dated back to 1995, when producer Hwang Kyung-sun finished the film Hairdresser (1995) at Korad, a notable television commercial film production. She picked up one screenplay called Beautiful Story, Wonderful Days from the screenplays submitted to the company. It was the story of people who moved to an unknown island in the south pacific after the earth’s eco-system was destroyed. She let her husband Kim Moon-saeng read the script, and he, who ended up directing the film, advised her that it looked like an animation story. That was the beginning.[xxxviii]

In early 1998, the project was awarded 3 billion won (250,000 dollar) from the Korea Film Commission as “Development Support for Feature Animation Films,” and made a 3 minute demo film with DR movie, DNA, and FACE which were notable OEM productions mostly work with Japanese company.[xxxix] From Kim’s background, scenic design, he had a visual concept in mind which was a mix of live-action images, 2D, and 3D. The demo film proved the possibility of appealing to an international market. Its distopian urban design and architectural concept were influenced by the Sagrada familia in Barcelona, by Antonio Gaudi, and by Brazilian photographer Sebastian Salgado’s works. In addition, composer Won-il’s trans-cultural music was well-matched with the film’s modern and ethnic images.[xl]

Kim decided to build the miniature set of eco-bahn, the film’s major setting, which is a paradise of a handful of selected people in the near future. He had to divide his team into three distinctive parts: miniature construction, 2D, and CG. The initial budget increased up to 36 billion won. Financial problems delayed the film’s progress, and most of the original staff left the project. Kim himself almost gave up on the project.[xli]

In November 1999, Kimand his producer Hwang met Kim Sung-yong of Samsung Venture capital. At first, Kim Sung-yong denied the project due to the film’s lack of creativity in the screenplay. However, surprisingly, after nearly three months, he made a decision to invest in Wonderful Days. Kim requested two conditions: changing the script and replacing the producer. Instead, Samsung venture capital promised to invest 60 billion won.   

Kim’s vision of the project was aiming at the international market. Whether the budget is 40 billion or 60 billion, it was almost impossible to break even in the domestic market; therefore, the film had to focus on selling to the international market from the very beginning.[xlii] His opinion was close to that of Kim Seung-beom of Tube Pictures, who invested 120 billion won into The Resurrection of Matchstick Girl around the same time.

The script and visual concept were significantly changed. The original idea was not transformed, but detailed storylines were a significant departure from the original script. In the final script, the human beings moved to a south pacific island named Sisil to escape from the destruction of the eco-system. Eco-bahn, which was controlled by an artificial intelligence called Delos, was the paradise of a handful of chosen people, but most of people live in the ghetto called Mar. The headquarters of Eco-bahn planned to destroy Mar and its people, and the partisans of Mar were trying to explode Delos.

Gaudi’s architects and the Levius’s works, Salgado’s pictures, and Chung-gye-chun, a Korean free market district, were used to visualize Mar and Eco-bahn. In addition, Kim Moon-saeng included Korean traditional dances and performances to show the film’s multi-cultural image. Won-il composed the world music using Korean drums, Kayageum, bell with western instruments and a synthesizer.

With a staff of 350, Sony HD cameras and Presier lenses, Inferno, 120,000 pictures, and a 3D outsourcing team, Wonderful Days changed the film’s release date from September 2001 to December 2001, then July 2002 to December 2002, and finally, on July 14 2003, in 45 theatres in Seoul (102 nationwide) Wonderful Days unlocked its secret.[xliii] It was the first time in Korean film history to distribute animation as widely as a live action film.

The box office performance of Wonderful Days was rather devastating. 250,000 patrons nationwide (120,000 in Seoul) meant just a 1 million dollar profit.[xliv] Unlike the triumphant story of Korean live-action films, local viewers did not welcome Korean animations. Critics pointed out that the weak plot which was not nearly as compelling as the visuals. In addition, the film failed to attract its target audiences.[xlv]

Before the opening day, Wonderful days did a pre-sale at the Cannes International film festival in May 2003, and Pathe (France) purchased it at the price of 500,000 dollars, 100,000 dollars with Porsian (China), and 170,000 dollars with Manga (Spain.) All of the contracts were a minimum guarantee base.[xlvi] They planned to sell the film to America and Japan. However, the film’s lack of identity and weak narrative structure could be a problem.

Wonderful Days shows the excessive boom in investing in big budget films during the end of 1990s and the early 2000s. Incited by the huge commercial success of the Korean live-action film Shiri (1999) and Friends (2001), investors such as banks, private capitals, and individuals gathered onto the film scene, and they poured in money without a careful examination of the film market. Wonderful Days should be studied in order to avoid making the same mistake over and over again.

The most important but lacking factors in Korean animation are simple. A good script, well-planned production process, and complete marketing concept. Everyone knows this, but it was hard to implement. Wonderful Days should have known that before it sailed too far to return.



Most Korean animations before My Beautiful Girl, Mari were dishonored by being called coarse imitations of Japanese anime. In fact, it is undeniable that heavy influences from Japanese anime can be detected in most Korean animations. In addition, the long history of OEM production affects the painting, shadowing, and texture of American TV animation to Korean animated films. As critics point out, Korean animation needs to find its own style and identity. Jack Heiter, an animator who has worked with Korean production nearly 20 years, says, “you (Korean Animation production) have on one hand a great pool of talent that understand the mechanics of animation but on the other hand there is a tremendous lack of creative vision and the ability to create original content.”[xlvii]

The malformed industry system causes the lack of creative personnel such as screenwriters and directors. However, the growth of interest in animation is changing this situation. Educational programs such as junior colleges, universities, national institutes, and even high schools have burst onto the scene within the past few years, and hundreds of young animators are producing creative short animations year by year. As of 2004, there are 23 institutions related to animation in existence. Therefore, it is not surprising that the average age of animators who were hired for My Beautiful Girl, Mari was just twenty-six.

Most critics and animators claim that Korean Animation is still young. Lee Sung-gang, who directed My Beautiful Girl, Mari, says the most important thing about being young is that “Korean animation can go forward in various ways while avoiding the typical way of Japanese and American animation, since they have almost reached their limits of originality.”[xlviii]

Korean animation is in transition. Although there are countless barriers to establishing the Korean animation industry, recent works such as My Beautiful Girl, Mari, Wonderful Days, and Oseam let us have hope. With the much improved technical skills and maturity by which Wonderful Days and My Beautiful Girl, Mari were achieved, Korean Animation will move into new territory. Therefore, the future of Korean animation is still bright.

[i]. More detailed information can be found at the official web page of Korean Film Commission (KOFIC). www.kofic.or.kr/annecy.

[ii] LEE Hwa-jung, “Korean Animation, searching for hidden answers,” Film 2.0, July 28, 2004.

[iii] Kien-Un YU, “Development of Korean Animation Industry: Historical, Economic, and Cultural Perspectives,” Doctoral Dissertation, Department of Communication, Temple University, 1999, p.49.

[iv] “The Statistics of The Korean Animation Industry,” The Ministry of Culture and Travel, 2002, p.59.

[v] John A. Lent and Kie-Un YU, “Korean Animation: A Short But Robust Life,” Animation in Asia and Pacific, ed. John A. Lent, Bloomington: Indiana, John Libbey Publishing, 2001, p.89.

[vi] Lent, John A. 2003. “The New Age of Asian Animation.” Asian Cinema. 14:1 (Spring/Summer 2003,) p.5.

[vii] Kien-Un YU, 1999, p.53

[viii] Kien-Un YU, Kie-Un Yu, “Historical Aspects of the Korean Animation Industry,” Asian Thought and Society, 24:72 (September-December): 1999, p.245

[ix] John A. Lent and Kie-Un YU, 2001, p.90.

[x] In spite of the success of two feature animations, SHIN brothers were not involved in producing feature animation again until 1995. They did not paid fairly and disillusioned from the Korean animation production. SHIN Dong-woo left the feature animation field, and Dong-heon moved to television animation and sub-contracting production for overseas clients. - Kien-Un YU, Asian Thought and Society, 1999, p.236-237.

[xi] Kien-Un YU, Asian Thought and Society, 1999, p.237.

[xii] Mugigae Kuk-jang (Rainbow Theatre) is the main venue for the Korean animation during the 1970s and 1980s. It is located in the Korean Children’s Center which was founded by the former first lady YOOK Young-soo in 1975.

[xiii] The first domestic imitation of Mazinga Z was Robot Taekwon V (1976) directed by KIM Chung-gi. Its immense success leads to make two sequels in 1976 and 1977.

[xiv] Taekwon Dongja Maruchi Arachi was one of MBC’s popular radio dramas, and the animated version became the third most popular of the year with 164,143 viewers. Another success at the box office was Byeolnara Samchongsa, which garnered a theatrical audience of 103,118 in 1979. – Kie-Un YU, 1999, p.70.

[xv] “Hanguk Animation Geungan Jomyeong” [Review of Recent Korean Animation], Motion, June 1997, p.163.

[xvi] “…Even so, Korean children continued to enjoy the abundant animation (41 features) produced in Korea in the 1980s.” Kie-Un YU, Asian Thought and Society, 1999, p.242.

[xvii] Kie-Un YU, 1999, p.242-243.

[xviii] “In 1987, Korea Broadcasting System (KBS) sponsored the country’s first television animation, Tteodori Kkachi (Wondering Kkachi), which shifted the industry from theatre to television production. From 1987 to 1993, no feature animations were made, although 26 animated television shows appeared.” Kie-Un YU, 1999, p.242.

[xix] A Ministry of Culture and Sports officially announced, “The Cartoon industry is a high value-added business which heavily affects other businesses such as video and computer games, records, character products, advertisements, and even tourism. In addition, it contributes to the promotion of Korean culture abroad.” Quoted in Lent and YU, 2001.p.93.

[xx] PARK Eun-young, “Animation kwanryeon jung-tchaek (Recent Policy on Animation),” Cine 21, July 28, 1998.

[xxi] “Promotion of Korean Films and Programs Supported in 2002,” Korean Film Observatory (Korean Version), Korean Film Commission, April 2002, p.2.

[xxii] “For Korean Films and Cultural Diversity - Promotion of Korean Films and Programs Supported in 2002,” Korean Film Observatory (English Version), Korean Film Commission, Spring 2003, pp.10-13.

[xxiii] Korean Film Observatory (English Version), 2003, pp.13-14.

[xxiv] Tae-hyung, Kim. “Animation Industry Trends in 2003 and Future Prospects,” Korean Film Observatory (English Version), Korean Film Commission, Summer 2003, p.16.

[xxv] Tempted by hopes of festival glory, or to prove their artistic credentials to their colleagues, Korean film producers, more often than not, give their director an artistic freedom.

[xxvi] KIM Hye-sun, “Until We Met Mari-How My Beautigul Girl, Mari Was Made,” Film 2.0, January 11, 2002.

[xxvii] An Interview with LEE Sung-gang. Cine21, 2002.1.8.

[xxviii] KIM Hye-sun, 2002.

[xxix] KIM Hye-sun, 2002.

[xxx] Interview, Cine21, 2002.

[xxxi] KIM Hye-sun, 2002.

[xxxii] KIM Tae-hyung, 2003, p.17-18.

[xxxiii] JANG Byung-won, “My Beautiful Girl, Mari Won Grand Prix at Annecy,” Film 2.0, June 9, 2002.

[xxxiv] KIM Mi-young, “Will Korean Animation Have a Wonderful Days?” Film 2.0, January 12, 2001.

[xxxv] HWANG Hye-lim, “Wonderful Distopia! Wonderful Days,” Cine 21, December 9, 2002.

[xxxvi] During the 1980s, JANG Sun-woo was the key figure of so called Korean New Wave, and he made a series of political satires such as Sungkongsidae (JANG, 1985), Seoul Jesus (JANG, 1984), and Kudealdourichurom (JANG, 1989). In the 1990s, at the time of the birth of renaissance of Korean cinema, JANG directed theme-centered issue film A Petal (1995), Bad Movie (1998), and Lies (2000).

[xxxvii] KIM Mi-young, 2001.

[xxxviii] KIM Hyun-jung, “Can Wonderful Days be the Shiri in Animation?” Cine 21, July 25, 2003.

[xxxix] KIM Hyun-jung, 2003.

[xl] KIM Hyun-jung, “An Interview with KIM Moon-saeng,” Cine 21, July 23, 2003.

[xli] KIM Hyun-jung, Interview, 2003.

[xlii] HWANG Hye-lim, 2001.

[xliii] KIM Hyun-jung, 2003.

[xliv] However, Studio Ghibri’s Spirited Away and Disney’s Finding Nemo, which were distributed two-three months before Wonderful Days, performed well in Korean Box Office.

[xlv] Stephen Kim, one of the producers on Wonderful Days said that the problem with the film is, “The story is too difficult for children- it targeted teenagers. But if you target teenagers, you need a concept they like.” – Mark Russell, 2003.

[xlvi] KIM Hyun-jung, 2003.

[xlvii] Jack Heiter, “All Work and All Play: An Interview with Cartoon Animator Jack Heiter.” Thing Asian.com, August 4, 2003.

[xlviii] Mark Russell, “Korean Animation thrives on foreign contracts but lacks identity.” Hollywood Reporter. Aug 26, 2003.

여기저기 검색하다가 "Korean Animation, Boom or Burst?" 라는 제목의 글이 눈에 띄어서 클릭해봤는데 역시나 모두 영어.. (옮겨오신분이 요약이라도 해놓으실줄 알았음)해석이나 요약가능하신분 알려주세요.. (별 뜻 없으려나..?)

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  1. BlogIcon NoSyu 2007/01/27 21:35  댓글주소  수정/삭제  댓글쓰기

    애니메이션에 대해 사전 지식이 없는 저로서는 프리리딩이 되지 않기에
    ~_~를 찍고 있습니다.^^;;

  2. BlogIcon Laputian 2007/01/28 18:22  댓글주소  수정/삭제  댓글쓰기

    어느정도 짧으면 하겠는데 이건 대체.. 너무 길군요 -_-

  3. BlogIcon 방랑객 2007/01/29 14:13  댓글주소  수정/삭제  댓글쓰기

    ...죄송... 너무 긴데요-_-;

  4. BlogIcon A 럭셜청풍 2007/01/29 19:44  댓글주소  수정/삭제  댓글쓰기

    글의 구조상 Introduction 부분만 해석해주셔도 뭔가 알수잇을것 같은데.

  5. BlogIcon Alex 2007/10/19 13:25  댓글주소  수정/삭제  댓글쓰기

    Very informative article.

    # You missed the MWP studios angle though. MWP offer new directions to Koreanimation by replicating popular Hallyu dramas and making them into animated features and series. That's a whole new area of animation for the R.O.K.'s ani-industry to explore.