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Minister says comics industry 'should be valued'

2012/07/16 20:44:34

Taipei, July 16 (CNA) Culture Minister Lung Ying-tai on Monday called attention to the comics industry, saying a complete industry chain should be developed to ensure a sustainable supply of talent in this field.

"The comics industry should be valued," Lung said at a ceremony to announce the nominees of the government's Golden Comic Awards.

She said the government should carry out a more scientific and detailed evaluation of the comics industry, which she said was "diverse," in that it crossed over to other realms such as the film industry.

Comics could be for both adults and children, Lung added.

However, she said, her ministry needed time before it could plan the development of the animation and comics industries, as the Ministry of Economic Affairs was still tasked with developing the industries.

Nevertheless, she said, she hoped Taiwan could play its own comic theme song at the opening of the ceremony next year.

Kid Jerry, a comic artist who attended the ceremony, said Taiwan had many comic artists and a good-sized comic book market, as evident from the crowds that flooded the comic-book zones of book exhibitions in the country every year.

"But everyone is doing their own thing, without a concerted effort," said the artist.

He urged the government to integrate the animation and comics industry with the publishing, gaming and film industries and other businesses, so that comic artists could sell their works to filmmakers or turn them into peripheral products.

Meanwhile, publishers and artists were nominated in eight categories of the 3rd Golden Comic Awards, including Best Comic Contribution Award for the Year, Best Comic Grand Prize and Best New Comic Artist.

The Lifetime Achievement Award went to Fan Wan-nan, a comic artist and the founder of Tongli Publishing Co., which launched comic magazines to give local artists a platform to publish their works.

The awards ceremony will be held on July 29.

As part of the event, an exhibition was launched that day at the lobby of the Taipei Railway Station, showcasing Taiwanese comics dating back to 1950, international comics, interactive e-comic books and Taiwan's first comic book.

(By Christie Chen)
ENDITEM/ Priyanka