A video being used by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to promote the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games is the subject of heated criticism over what viewers are calling subpar content. Responding to the adverse public reaction, the ministry said Tuesday that the clip is not the official promotional video for the sporting event.
The nearly four-minute video depicts K-pop singers and comedians who, infected with the “Can’t Stop Moving” virus, dance uncontrollably to an upbeat reinterpretation of Korean folk song “Arirang.”
It also features a parodied version of American talk show host Conan O’Brien, who recently visited Korea, as well as members of the women’s national curling team and national short track speed skating team.
Since the clip became available on the Culture Ministry’s official YouTube channel on Sept. 27, viewers have heaped on negative comments, saying that not only is it done in bad taste, it provides no information on the sporting event’s host community. Responses ranged from “What is the purpose of this clip?” to “It’s the worst promo video ever.”
“This video’s only redeeming quality is that other cliches of Korea, like kimchi and Psy’s ‘Gangnam Style,’ were not included,” one comment said.
Some claimed the clip is especially second-rate when compared to the promotional video for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, unveiled at the Rio Olympics Closing Ceremony in August. That video highlights Japan’s key national treasures, such as its thriving animation industry.
The Culture Ministry responded, saying the contested clip is not the official promotional video for the PyeongChang Olympics, but a separate promotion.
“People have misunderstood the clip’s purpose,” a ministry official said. “It’s not the offical trailer.”
Titled “Arari, Yo,” the clip was made to advertise a dance flash mob music video contest the ministry is organizing in celebration of the PyeongChang Olympics. Submissions are being accepted from Sept. 27-Dec. 31. Three winners will be awarded total cash prizes of $60,000, with the top winner receiving $30,000.
“The official video for the PyeongChang Olympics, which reflects the event’s vision and theme, will be released next week,” the ministry announced Tuesday.
“Arari, Yo” was created by content agency Loud Pigs and features “Arariyo PyeongChang,” a modern reinterpretation of “Arirang,” produced by jazz musician Lee Ju-han. The Culture Ministry said that it paid 270 million won ($240,700) for the video.
Rumy Doo, Korea Herald