An exhibition held at the Wanda Plaza mall in Ningbo fell to pieces after a life-sized Lego sculpture worth $15,000 was inadvertently destroyed by a child a little too eager to play with the cartoon-like figure.
The model was a 1.8-meter rendering of Nick Wilde, the fox character from the Walt Disney blockbuster Zootopia, and reportedly took the artist surnamed Zhao a painstaking three days to complete. The character was on display for less than an hour at the shopping mall owned by real estate giant Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties before the mishap occurred.
Disney Characters Promote Wanda Mall
Dalian Wanda is said to have commissioned the sculpture of the Disney-trademarked character to attract more visitors to the mall in China’s Zhejiang province. Just last month the US entertainment conglomerate announced its determination to defend its intellectual property after storm troopers, Snow White and Captain America, all of them trademarked by Disney, showed up at the opening of Wanda’s latest theme park in Nanchang, China.
The South China Morning Post reported that Zhao refused to accept compensation from the parents of the young boy, telling state broadcaster CCTV that “the child did not intend to break it.”
Although the artist was understanding, others were less forgiving as Chinese netizens took to microblogging site Weibo to express their anger regarding the incident. The hashtag #ManSpends3DaysAndNightsBuildingBlocks was shared over 13,000 times on the site according to the BBC. The organizer of the event has since placed a sign where the statue once stood calling on the public to show greater respect for the artist and his work. Photos accompany the sign showing the statue before and after it was shattered.
The film where the character was adopted for the piece is extremely popular in China, setting the record for the largest single-day gross for an animated film and overtaking Kung Fu Panda 3 as the highest-grossing animated cartoon movie in the country.