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Sunday 21 January 2018

Boy accidentally destroys €12.9m Lego statue that took three days to build

Nick Wilde from Zootopia. Photo: CEN
Nick Wilde from Zootopia. Photo: CEN

Mark Molloy

A Chinese boy has made headlines around the world after accidentally destroying a Lego statue worth £10,000 within the first hour of new exhibition.

The four-year-old boy reduced the sculpture of Nick Wilde, a character from Disney’s 3D computer-animated Zootopia film, to rubble after evading a security rope.

A Chinese artist named Zhao, a 22-year-old graduate of Zhejiang University’s Institute of Technology, spent three days and nights building the detailed Lego creation.

He builds Lego structures in his spare time and was delighted when his Zootopia piece, made from around 10,000 pieces, was displayed at the new exhibition in the city of Ningbo.

His joy didn’t last for long, however, when the boy knocked it over while trying to take a picture with the colourful statue, which had a ‘no touching’ sign next to it, the People’s Daily Online reports.

Zhao posted the photos of the destroyed giant fox on Chinese social media with the hashtag #ManSpends3DaysAndNightsBuildingBlocks trending as a result and over 80,000 Weibo users sharing, liking and commenting.

“An hour after the exhibition opened, a boy aged four to five pushed Nick and he fell to the ground and smashed into pieces,” he explained. “I felt really frustrated and I even [started] to question my life.

“It took a lot of effort building the sculpture, especially the eyes. I had to change it a lot of times.”

He added that he did not blame the child for the accident: “I really don’t blame the kid … a child couldn’t really comprehend the cost of such an accident”.

In a follow-up post on Weibo, Zhao wrote [translated]: “I thank everybody [for their] concern... I have known many Lego lovers through this incident and I am moved.

“Nobody wants to see this happen … If the parents could draw a lesson from this and learn how to teach their child, then it's worth it.”

The boy apologised after the incident, reports say, with his parents offering to pay for the damage caused. Zhao said he would not be accepting any financial compensation from the boy’s parents.

He said: “The boy is young, and besides the staff are responsible too for not keeping an eye on the sculpture.”

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