-- Homeland, - South Korea - The first stop-motion feature in 45 years will hit Korean theaters later this month.

The Korean animation industry has demonstrated world-class flexibility in performing different styles of animation. While companies around the world have hired Korean studios to animate all the different style features, one medium has been for nearly half a century

In recent years there have been several stop-motion shorts from Peninsula, perhaps the most prominent award-winning artist's career. Works by Mu Kang Min, but no one has produced a full-length feature since Gann Tae Eun's Kongjui & Patchui was released in 1978.

That will change later this month, when first-time filmmaker Park Jae-bum's feature film "Mother Land" will hit theaters in South Korea on the 25th. The film stars a young Siberian girl and her older brother

who venture into the unforgiving wilderness to look for an old spirit that might be able to help a sick mother, "the unique point of Motherland is that it is a stop-motion animation," Park explained at the Busan International Film Festival in May of last year. "I tried to express the elements of fairy tales and folk tales in a cinematic way.

He continued, "Another thing, I shot one frame at a time with the movement of the doll, but I paid particular attention to the overall production process, from the character, set building, shooting and computer graphics that I wanted it to look like a real actor performing."

Park and his team spent three years working on Motherland produced by the director's alma mater Korean Academy of Film Arts – it's not a student film, Park graduated in 2004. Other important creative talents include cinematographers Song Hye-ryong, Kim Ye-bin and Cho Yong-dae, production designer Lee Yun-ji, editors Park Jae-bum and Kim Ye-bin and composer Min-Yong Song.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Park could hardly believe that his love labor was about to be released in South Korea. "I think it's a miracle in itself that our film will be released. We hope that through our films, more people will know about the diverse work being done in Korean animation and stop motion."

In addition to the main plot of a young girl trying to save her mother, Mother's land also features conflicts between nature and industry, as the homes and tribes of the young hero are threatened by hostile government forces trying to exploit the land for its natural resources.

"The story is a confrontation between nature and industry, but I also thought it was a reduced version of the world in which we live in nature," Park said. "Even the adversary, Lieutenant Vladimir, is not a person who believes that he is doing purely evil things, but that he is serving his country.

Motherland is preparing for an international release sometime later this year, but delivery details beyond its Korean launch are not yet available. M-line distribution is dealing with global sales.