Seoul City to create 'Avengers' tour route

Seoul City to create 'Avengers' tour route
Crew members of Hollywood blockbuster “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” are seen on the Mapo Bridge, in Seoul, where traffic on all lanes is closed for the shooting of the film.

Seoul City pledged Thursday to introduce a special tourist route by linking four local sightseeing spots that appeared in the recent "Avengers" film, but some doubt how effective the plan will be.

Seoul Metropolitan Government said it would offer a tourist course with four public spots ― Sangam Digital Media City, the old steel manufacturing area, Gangnam-daero and the Floating Island on the Hangang River. These locations were used in the shooting of "Avengers: Age of Ultron," which drew more than 10 million viewers earlier this year.

The Avengers tour programme will also include visits to neighbouring attractions such as the Korean Film Museum and the Mullae artists' community to offer a more complete tour course, the city said.

Seoul City has seen a rise of visitors after the film was released. The number of daily visitors to the Floating Island, the manmade island that appeared as geneticist Helen Cho's laboratory in the film, doubled to about 7,000 last month, compared to March, it said.

Having projected that the nation's brand value would jump by 2 trillion won (S$2.4 billion) by participating in the film, the Korean government provided various assistance for filmmaking, including 4 billion won of financial support and public traffic restrictions. The authorities had also expected that the film would draw more than 600,000 overseas tourists.

Some people, however, have raised doubts over the film's influence on tourism, saying that the promotional impact has been exaggerated.

"I think the new tour programme will only waste money. The Korean background of the movie barely offered meaningful scenes in the film, as it was just quickly passed by, without giving a significant vibe," said film critic Kim Yu-jung at Gangnam University.

The new tour route will be available from Friday, the city said.

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