Saturday, March 15, 2003

NORTH KOREAN EXPORTS: NOT JUST NUKES, THE DPRK ALSO PRODUCES ANIMATION Who, pray tell would want to purchase the services of North Korean animators? Why the French of course!
For years French and other European production companies have contracted work to SEK Studio, based in Pyongyang, says Dominique Boischot, president of Paris-based film production company Les Films de la Perrine. Boischot routinely faxes master drawings to North Korean animators.

Artists are reportedly educated at schools such as Kim Il Sung University. SEK's 1,500 artists makes it one of the largest animation studios in the world, says Boischot. He says he likes to work with SEK because it can handle large volumes of coloring assignments, for example, and complete orders efficiently and with excellent quality.

I loved this anecdote:

Several years ago Les Films de la Perrine wanted to hire SEK for its long-running television show, Wombat City. Set in the future, it features a multiethnic cast of teenaged characters zooming around in flying cars between sleek urban buildings. "But it was not possible to do it in North Korea," says Boischot, "because for them, the concept was so different from what they're used to seeing. They didn't really understand it.

"The show was done in China instead."

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