According to the Associated Press, which opened a North Korean bureau in December, Kim Jong-un hosted a concert featuring several hand-picked performers dressed up as Disney characters — Mickey and Minnie, Winnie and Tigger, plus some weird green dinosaur — and prancing around onstage against a backdrop of footage from Snow White, Dumbo, and Beauty and the Beast. It is all part of the Supreme Leader’s “grandiose plan to bring about a dramatic turn in the field of literature and arts this year,” as the state-run news agency put it.
It’s worth noting that Un’s father, Kim Jong-il, had an (in)famous obsession with the cinema, which he pursued by chloroforming and kidnapping South Korean directors and actors, writing the communist filmmaking manifesto On the Art of the Cinema in 1973, and even producing several films (listed here on IMDB). Here’s a shot of him on the set:
So might this recent Disney enthusiasm be a sign of Kim Jong-un’s own cinematic aspirations? Our advice to Disneyland Tokyo’s team of mascots: Be wary of overly friendly customers wielding suspiciously strong-smelling handkerchiefs.