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KOCCA strives for K-animation success

Posters for “Bread Barbershop,” “Zombiedumb” and “Magical: Make the Princess Laugh,” from left to right (KOCCA)
Posters for “Bread Barbershop,” “Zombiedumb” and “Magical: Make the Princess Laugh,” from left to right (KOCCA)

Local animations funded by Korea Creative Content Agency projects are grabbing international attention.

KOCCA has been trying to raise the competitiveness of Korean animations with many annual projects, including the domestic animation production support project that funds up to 2 million won ($1,700) for promising animations.

One of the funded animations, “Bread Barbershop” by Monster Studio, was listed among the global top 10 most popular TV programs by Netflix just 14 days after it was released on the platform in August, and was also launched on Amazon Prime Video on Sept. 17.

The comical animation features bread and desserts as main characters and presents episodes of them working in a barbershop. The second season of “Bread Barbershop,” which was broadcast via KBS1 locally from June, was funded once again as part of this year’s support project by KOCCA.

Anyzac’s “Zombiedumb,” another animation funded by KOCCA, is also popular worldwide, reaching over 700 million views on China’s portal site Tencent. It was chosen for KOCCA’s project that supported global marketing of local animations, allowing it to be shown in 33 countries in Africa, including Ghana’s GHone TV.

“Due to COVID-19, contactless contents have become important and have been spreading globally through OTT, so expectations for growth of the animation industry is increasing,” Lee Hyun-joo, head of pop culture at KOCCA said in a statement, referring to over-the-top services.

Meanwhile, KOCCA has also been supporting local animations to expand their presence here. One of the animations that received production support from KOCCA, “Magical: Make the Princess Laugh” by AnitoArt, was released in theaters on Sept. 17. It is the first K-pop musical animation, featuring K-pop artists such as Taeil of boy band Block B on its soundtrack.

Sales of the Korean animation industry surpassed 699.5 billion won last year, increasing 11.2 percent from 2018, according to KOCCA.

Lee added that KOCCA will continue providing diverse customized assistance projects so that local animations can expand both domestically and internationally.

By Lim Jang-won (ljw@heraldcorp.com)
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