SEOUL, May 28 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korea will render monetary support for the production of an animated film about Korean women forced to serve as sex slaves for Japanese troops during World War II to help increase the world’s awareness of the issue, the government said Thursday.
The Ministry of Gender Equality and Family said it will provide a subsidy of 200 million won (US$180,375) for the production of the sequel to “Herstory” (2011), a short animated film directed by Kim Jun-gi.
Unlike the first “Herstory,” which was based on the testimony of one of the victims, Jeong Seo-wun, the sequel will depict the sexual slavery issue from the viewpoint of Japanese soldiers who were at the scene.
The 2011 film is about the late Jeong, who was taken away to an Indonesian island, deceived by a false promise of her father being released from jail if she worked at a Japanese factory, and forced to work at a military brothel for Japanese troops for eight years.
The film won prizes in many local and overseas film festivals while receiving high attention from audiences at last year’s Angouleme International Comics Festival.
The sequel will be made into a 15-minute 3D animation, also directed by Kim, the ministry said, adding that he plans to complete the production by the end of next year.
“We decided to provide monetary support for the production of the film based on the judgment that an animated film can be a very effective means for delivering stories of former sex slaves,” a ministry official said. “Details of the new film have yet to be decided but we expect it will be as good as the original work.”
Historians estimate that more than 200,000 Asian women, mostly Koreans, were forced into sexual servitude for Japan’s World War II soldiers. Japan, which ruled the Korean Peninsula as a colony from 1910-45, has refused to take any responsibility for the issue, arguing that it was done by civilian pimps.