“Random encounters with the unusual” is a repository for the oddities that me and Mrs J have encountered on our travels, which we find interesting or amusing in some way. Have a look, maybe you will find something interesting or amusing herein.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

The Home of the Spanish Smurfs

The Spanish region of Andalusia is known for its white towns and villages,  where all of the buildings are uniformly whitewashed making the settlements stand out against the earthy colours of the countryside. Not all of these settlements are white however, one town known as Júzcar is painted blue, Smurf-blue!

In 2011 this small and remote Spanish town was selected as the location for the worldwide premiere of the 2011 movie “The Smurfs”, which was held on June 16, 2011. Prior to the screening of the premiere Sony Pictures arranged to have the town painted Smurf-blue. It is reported that circa 4,000 litres of paint were used in this undertaking, which saw the entire town including the church and its gravestones painted. This transformation of the town from a traditional whitewashed settlement to a blue haven for Smurfs drastically increased the number of visitors to the town, and as a result of this the inhabitants have kept the new colour scheme to this day.

These little blue creatures, which were first created by Belgian cartoonist Peyo (Pierre Culliford) in 1958 are not just responsible for turning a Spanish town blue. According to the "Topless Robot" website it seems that the Smurfs may have inspired modern day Zombie fiction with their 1963 storyline "The Purple Smurf". The same website also recounts that Smurf figurines may have been responsible for creating a lead poisoning scare in the UK in the 1970s.

For those who care to investigate I am sure there are also many other Fortean themes lurking in the long history of theses little blue creatures.

Looking across the roof tops.

Smurf murals adorn the town.

Pictures: Júzcar, Spain (November 2014).

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