- Title: BELGIUM: Comic character Tintin turns 80
- Date: 15th January 2009
- Summary: BRUSSELS, BELGIUM (FILE - 2007) (REUTERS) EXCERPTS OF COMIC BOOK 'TINTIN ON THE MOON' NICK RODWELL HOLDING THE COMIC BOOK 'TINTIN ON THE MOON' COVER OF COMIC BOOK 'TINTIN AND THE PHARAOHS' EXCERPTS OF COMIC BOOK 'TINTIN AND THE PHARAOHS' COVER OF COMIC BOOK 'TINTIN IN AMERICA' EXCERPTS OF COMIC BOOK 'TINTIN IN AMERICA' DRAWING SHOWING TINTIN IN AMERICA VARIOUS FIGURINES OF TINTIN AND OTHER CHARACTERS OF TINTIN COMIC BOOK
- Reuters ID: LVA6WPIV7VD9O9A8XMP756ACY0XZ
- Location: Belgium
- Country: Belgium
- Duration: 00:00:48
- Topics: Entertainment
- Story Text: Comic character Tintin, a Belgian reporter and heroic adventurer, turns 80 with a growing empire and film projects in Hollywood.
The first event marking Tintin's 80th birthday took place on Wednesday (January 14) with the unveiling of a giant fresco in a train station in central Brussels.
The fresco presents several comic characters drawn by Georges Remi, better known by his pen name Herge and is a tribute to travels.
Herge's most famous character is Tintin, a reporter whose adventures took him all around the world.
The reporter and his four-legged friend Snowy first appeared in a Belgian magazine supplement on January 10, 1929 and soon after, "Tintin in the land of the Soviets" marked the young reporter's comic book debut.
With Snowy, Tintin travelled to Congo, Tibet or South America. In 1954, Tintin even flew to the Moon in a visionary comic book published 15 years before astronauts Neil Amstrong.
Since 1929, more than 200 million copies have been sold and the comics have been translated into more than 100 languages, including local dialects.
Nick Rodwell, CEO of Moulinsart, the business which holds the rights to all Tintin character merchandising, is not keen on celebrating the 80th birthday of a character who never aged.
"I'm just not really for celebrating the 80th birthday of a young reporter. So it's a bit strange but I had the honour on Sunday to meet somebody in Denmark, Copenhagen, who went around the world in 44 days in 1928 and he's 97 today. So everything is possible. I think the solution to living a great life is to travel and that's what Tintin did," Rodwell said.
And Tintin is about to travel again.
In 2007, Moulinsart, announced a deal with Hollywood studio 'Dreamworks'.
Dreamworks bought the rights to all 23 albums.
For the first film, Spielberg is teaming up with Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson, who will bring technological expertise to the table to bring Tintin to life.
Moulinsart said they hope the first film can be released on May 22, 2011, explaining that the group was keen on that release date since May 22 was also Herge's date of birth.
From key rings to t-shirts, exhibitions and even a musical, Tintin is big business.
Moulinsart, with an annual turnover of some 16 million euros and 40 staff, markets books about Herge, clothes and toy cars, but makes most of its money from collectable items like Tintin figures, the group's spokesman Marcel Wilmet says.
Other events marking Tintin's 80th birthday include a Tintin Festival in the Belgian city of Namur this May and an appearance at the Europalia China exhibition, which starts in October. A new Tintin museum is also set to open on June 2.
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