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Movie Theme Park Opens in Seoul

2005/02/23 | 276 views | Permalink | Source

There's a new tourist hot spot smack in the heart of Seoul. It's a mock studio where visitors can experience scenes from some of Korea's recently acclaimed films and TV dramas.

It began with the hit 1998 action film "Shiri". "JSA - Joint Security Area", followed two years later, delving into new territory, focusing on a banned friendship across the heavily-armed border separating the two Koreas. And the mystery-thriller "Old Boy" capped the distinguished line-up by winning the Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

These are some of Korea's latest cultural exports that triggered "Hallyu", or the Korean Wave, which refers to the raging popularity of Korean culture in Asia.

Now, memorable scenes from these movies are on display at a theme park called "Cine i-Studio" in Myeongdong, downtown Seoul. "Here, visitors have a chance to experience famous scenes from several Korean hit movies", said one park official.

Visitors can enter a North Korean observation post just like the one in the movie "JSA", which tells the story of two South Korean and two North Korean soldiers becoming friends, and then becoming involved in a murder mystery.

Or, meet Oh Dae-su, the main character in Park Chan-wook's film "Old Boy", the story of an average man who gets kidnapped and imprisoned in a hotel room for 15 years due to an old classmate's revenge he never knew about. The set even offers the famous fried dumplings from the movie.

For Korean movie buffs, this place is a must. And for tourists, the place is a cultural getaway in the heart of the bustling capital. "When tourists visit Seoul, there aren't many unique places they can visit. But when tourists come here, I hope they'll get to experience the key areas of Korean culture".

The most popular section is the set of "Winter Sonata", a Korean TV soap opera that took Japan by storm last year. Fans of the Korean actor Bae Yong-joon, better known as "Yonsama" in Japan, are busy taking photographs, and for a moment, imagine being part of the drama, whose unforgettable scenes were shot in the snowy mountains of Gangwon Province.

"I didn't get to look through the whole park yet, but so far, I'm enjoying the tour. The actors did well to make me feel as if I'm part of the movies". "It felt like I was the main character of a movie. I enjoyed the experience very much".

The Cine i-Studio opened last December, and plans to expand the park with more movie sets.

Arirang TV

Source :

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