Little 'minions' a big hit at market

GEORGE TOWN, Malaysia - After conquering McDonald's, the yellow minions are set to take over the streets of Penang – the Little Penang Street Market, that is.

After the toys sparked a mad rush at McDonald's outlets, where these were given away with its meal purchases, they have also proved to be a hit with customers at the monthly arts, craft and culture market here.

However, the ones at the market are made of clay by the Dream Work Art Studio, which displayed these at their stall in the market at Upper Penang Road yesterday.

One of the studio's partners, Leo Tang, 29, said that they received numerous requests to make the minions after the craze started.

Tang said that he and his partners had decided to display these at the stall due to the huge interest in the toy, adding that they themselves were fans of the minions.

Among the customers making a beeline for the minions were graphic designer Kang Soon Ching, who found it hard to contain her excitement at the sight of the clay versions.

Kang, 36, said that she had already collected the full minions set from McDonald's.

"I have placed my order for this clay set and am expecting to get it in a month's time," she said.

The minion is a "small, yellow, cylindrical-shaped, genetically humanised kernel". It is one of the most notable characters in the Despicable Me and Despicable Me 2 movies.

The Little Penang Street Market is held every last Sunday of the month. It first began in July 2006.

Market co-ordinator Lyndy Ong said: "We hope to not only promote the culture and heritage of Penang, but also its artisans."

She said some 70 vendors took up stalls in the market every month, adding that the street market acted as a good platform especially for younger artisans to showcase their skills in arts and crafts as well as their musical talent.

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, who dropped by the market for a visit, said he hoped it could be run on a fortnightly basis in future.