Japanese animated film 'Suzume' opens in South Korea

The latest work of acclaimed Japanese animated film director Shinkai Makoto has premiered in South Korea, where anime is becoming increasingly popular.

The film is a fantasy titled "Suzume."

Its title character is a high school girl who experienced a devastating earthquake as a child. She embarks on an adventure across Japan to close magical doors that cause disasters.

On Wednesday, Shinkai spoke to an audience at a theater in Seoul to mark the film's release in the country.

He expressed hope that moviegoers in South Korea will relate to the film, saying everyday life can suddenly be cut off by disasters or accidents there too.

People flocked to see the new film even though it was a weekday.

A university student reported being moved to tears by the story.

Japanese animated films are being screened one after another this year in South Korea.

One of them, the basketball story "The First Slam Dunk," has drawn more South Korean moviegoers than any other anime.