The Famous Millionaire

박승연

Chapter 115

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Chapter 115: Chapter 115

A little later Hyunwoo went into a restaurant specializing in stir-fried beef tripe.

Gyungsu, who had been waiting for Hyunwoo there, was pouring soju in his cup.

When Hyunwoo sat beside him, he let out a long sigh that he had pent up, “Hah! I wasted 30 million won on my animation business!”

Hyunwoo hadn’t known he made an investment like that. He probably acquired a loan with his rented house as collateral. He worked like hell to taste the fruits of his investment, but he had to stop his business in the middle when his partner and major financier gave up further funding.

“Why does my life keep being messed up like this? I just don’t want to live like this.”

“The more you run into difficulties, the stronger you become, brother.”

“You’re right, but… my eldest child is pestering me to buy Nopa jumper for him. He pestered me all through the night, complaining that he had no such jumpers when his friends are wearing that famous brand.”

Nopa was a sportswear brand that the students wore like school uniforms these days. Other brands cost about 150,000 won, but Nopa cost at least 300,000 won, and more expensive jumpers sold for as much as 600,000 won.

“So, I knuckled him on the head. Damn it! I could have bought one hundred Nopa jumpers with that money. It’s me who should get scolded, not my son,” said Gyungsu, drinking soju as he vented his anger.

Heartbroken to hear Gyunsu, Hyunwoo comforted him by saying, “You have to make a comeback for the sake of your children.”

“I know, but this is the only business that I can do well. I’m old enough to be a senior on the street, so I wonder if I can get a job by using my expertise.”

Hyunwoo wanted to ask him to manage Ani & Funny as he was jobless, but could not bring it up for two reasons. One reason was that Ani & Funny was at best something like a hobby club composed of the Anifan kids, though it was an animation venture in name only. And there was no possibility of Ani & Funny making profits anytime soon. The other reason was Gyungsu’s role.

If Hyunwoo gave him a certain role there, it was not because Hyunwoo wants his animation technique but his experience. In other words, what Hyunwoo wanted was for to Gyungsu give the Anifan kids some sense of direction about their future as well as instill into their minds

the dream and hope like “We Can Succeed!” Given Gyungsu’s situation, however, it looked like he would rather convey the virus of despair to them.

Hyunwoo filled the cup for him without saying anything whenever he emptied it.

After a good while, Gyungsu changed the topic and asked, “Is your business Ani & Funny doing well?”

“Of course. I hear the city government has a big animation support program coming up next February, so I’m going to apply for it,” said Hyunwoo, full of confidence, to attract his attention.

But Gyungsu showed no reaction to his remarks. He was also aware of the city government’s programs.

“You mean that 50 million won? That might be a good opportunity for amateurs. Are you going to apply with the existing animation work Garbage World?”

Hyunwoo could feel from Gyungsu’s voice tone that Garbage World would not work.

“No. Actually, we’re into a new animation work at the moment. We’ve almost completed the story and the characters. The Anifan kids are working on the continuity, and Myunhun is probably developing the expressions of the characters,” Hyunwoo hesitated but eventually asked, “Could you take a look? I guess as a professional you might have a good eye for it.”

“Later, man. I don’t want to think about anything now.”

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Both of them kept drinking like that and then parted.

Since then, Hyunwoo called him often to ask him to review the Anifan kids’ animation work. After several days, Gyungsu accepted his request.

“Okay, then. Let’s go together to take a look.”

Both of them headed to the House of Happiness.

The Anifan kids welcomed him. They knew how passionately he taught them when he was donating his talent in the past.

They already had a tentative title for their new work Tuti and Angelica. Gyungsu checked the story, characters as well as the continuity. The more he looked into it, the more he surprised he was. After reviewing the production, he looked at Hyunwoo with twinkling eyes, “Wow! This is much better than the Garbage World.”

As if he was confident, Hyunwoo said, raising his voice, “Obviously this should be better than the previous one. If we keep making works of this quality, sooner or later we will be able to see the kind of production that can hit the jackpot in the market.”

“Well, I think this one will hit the big time. Though the story is a bit banal, you can’t avoid it because it’s educational, but I like the characters very much. Cute, funny and very familiar to me. Looks like the children will like it very much,” said Gyungsu.

“Regardless of success or not, we’re going to do our best. In that process we might hit the jackpot someday,” said Hyunwoo.

“Of course you can’t produce a good work every time. Actually, my company had the same expectation for some time but ended up going bust like this. You have to seize the opportunity when you find it.”

“You’re right. Our first goal is to win the support fund of Ansan city. Do you think we have a good chance?”

Gyungsu nodded his head strongly, “Yea, I think you have a good chance, but you never know. If you really want it, you have to put perfection in it. As you have come this far, why don’t you invest a little more for better outcomes? If you hire one specialist in each category of the animation work, its quality will greatly improve.”

The moment he heard Gyungsu’s opinion, Hyunwoo immediately thought of one person.

“Are you talking about the man who was in charge of writing the continuity at your company?”

“There are several others who’re very talented, in addition to that man. There is one with excellent skill in story writing, and there are several others from Imagingpia.”

Of course, they were all excellent men in the field, but Hyunwoo was not that interested in them.

What attracted Hyunwoo to the Anifan kids was not their potential for animation technique, but the planning ability of Seoim Yu and Jihun Kang among others. The reason he founded Ani & Funny was that he wanted to grow their planning ability as much as possible.

Of course, he could bet on Tuti and Angelica by hiring professional animators to make it perfect and develop it into a profitable work, but that’s not what he intended for Ani & Funny. There was no guarantee of its success. Given the circumstances, Gyungsu’s company had a much higher rate of success because of the number of professionals and the necessary work.

What Hyunwoo coveted most was the expert on continuity. When he worked with the Anifan kids on the new production, he found out that the degree of fun would be more or less, depending on the continuity.

“I’d like to hire a continuity professional. I can’t afford to hire other professionals now, and we don’t have a formal office.”

“Got it. Let me call the guy and connect to you now, “said Gyungsu.

Though it was a bit late at night, Gyungsu called him as he was a very close friend.

His name was Sanggyu Maeng.

When Hyunwoo told him about the situation, he asked about the salary right away.

“I’m thinking of 1.5 million won as we don’t have much work now. Instead, you can work at home,” said Hyunwoo.

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“How much work do you have right now?”

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Hyunwoo explained to him about the animation production they were working on now.

“I think the compensation is fair. I think we had better meet to talk more. When are you available?”

“We have a meeting at the House of Happiness this Saturday. Can you come?”

“Okay. I’ll see you then.”

After Hyunwoo hung up the call, Gyungsu clapped his hands gladly.

“Hahaha. I’ve got great expectation. I think I want to formally join you, Hyunwoo.”

“Really?”

“You don’t have to pay me a lot. One million won will do. In fact, I would like to be a founding member of Ani & Funny. If the company grows big, my record as the founding member is important, isn’t it?”

Hyunwoo was so glad to hear that. Actually, he wanted Gyungsu’s experience.

Hyunwoo brought up the topic he really wanted to, but couldn’t up to now.

“Won’t you be the president of Ani & Funny?”

“Me? The president of Ani & Funny?”

Gyungsu opened his eyes wide and waved his hand violently to refuse it, “Oh, no, no. I don’t have any greed. Even if you appoint me as the president, I will never accept it.”

Hyunwoo repeated asked him to lead the company, saying he was serious, but Gyungsu rejected it, “Well, I’ve been working nervously at my venture company, and that’s more than enough for me. I can work as a salaried man, not as the president.”

Eventually, Hyunwoo gave up. Maybe later he could take on that role, but not now.

“Okay, brother. Let’s do this way. I think one million won is too small. How about 1.5 million won? Of course, I’ll give you a big bonus if this work makes a hit.”

Gyungsu grabbed Hyunwoo’s hands, “Thanks, Hyunwoo. I’ve got no one but you to turn to.”

“You don’t have to thank me, brother. I’ll have you do work worth 10 million won though I’ll only give you 1.5 million won as your salary.”

“That sounds good!”

*****

Saturday morning, a big middle-aged gentleman stepped into the House of Happiness.

“How do you do? My name is Sanggyu Maeng.”

Those who arrived there in advance turned their heads. Hyunwoo introduced Ani & Funny members to him, among them was Jungah.

After exchanging brief greetings they went right into the discussion.

Jungah presented her opinion first, “Our first goal is high efficiency with low cost, isn’t it? So, this is my idea.”

She showed them one cartoon that she prepared in advance. It showed several hundred people gathered at one place but only one person stood out with peculiar coloring, with the rest connected with lines and faces like shadows.

As if he knew what it suggested, Gyungsu said, “Do you want to give emphasis to only one main character but obscure the rest and the background?”

“Well, that’s the basic point, but I would like to treat it differently, depending on its duration. For example, if the playing time of the work is just ten minutes, we highlight one main character for only one minute and simplify the rest of the nine minutes as much as possible. I’ve brought two pictures as an example.”

She took out the pictures and showed them. The woman main character Angelica was drawn on both pictures, but the atmosphere was quite different. One was very subtle and beautiful, but the other was very simple but cute.

“If you watch a movie, every scene from the start to the finish lingers in your mind. That’s true for songs. We only remember what’s most impressive.”

“I know what you mean. But if you work on it like that, its marketability is gone,” said Gyungsu, opposing her idea.

Sanggu also expressed his opinion strongly, “I think even if you make only one production, you have to ensure it has the best quality to attract the people’s attention immediately. Competing with quality, not quantity, to say the least, but what Jungah is explaining is the opposite…”

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However, Myunghun Koh and the Anifan kids took side with Jungah, “I think it is much better to give variety through simplification. It looks like much more fun.”

On the other hand, those professionals including Sanggyu supported Gyungsu, “We’re going to vote for improving the quality. You have to remember you’re targeting the support fund offered by Ansan city. They put more emphasis on the perfection of the work.”

“Fun comes before quality,” said one of the kids.

“That’s amateur’s perspective. Quality is a must.”

“I think that’s banal thinking.

“If you become a professional like us, you will have a different opinion.”

Hyunwoo was busy listening to them. Both sides showed no sign of giving way.

After all, it was up to Hyunwoo to make the final decision.

Hyunwoo went back to the basics and found the answer quickly.

“Ani & Funny is an amateur, not a professional club, and the works will be produced for free release. We’re going to compete with ideas, not quality. I’m going to submit our production to Ansan city in a way that shows our ideas.”

“That’s regrettable. You have such a great idea, but you’re hiding it rather than emphasizing it by simplifying the work.”

“I agree. That’s too bad.”

The professional group including Gyungsu felt regrettable about Hyunwoo’s decision, but that was their misunderstanding.

Hyunwoo didn’t rule out the possibility of commercialization the production.

Looking at Gyungsu, Hyunwoo said calmly, “I don’t think the quality of our production will decrease because of the simplification of the characters. I feel the quality will go up instead.”

“How?”

“Because of the highlight effect. When the story first develops throughout the scene, we fill the scene with a comic and charming touch, and at the climax phase of the story, we maximize its texture and coloring. Rather than showing the colorful effects throughout the scene, we can make the highlighted scene stand out for impressive impact.”

Gyungsu was not persuaded, but as the owner made the final decision, he had to follow it. Later Gyungsul realized that animation technique is stable, but hard to make a hit while a great idea will lead to the jackpot, Hyunwoo thought. And he would verify it.

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