July 24, 2013— -- There seems to be no turning back for Juzcar, a Spanish village that had its houses painted sky blue two years ago for the premiere of a Smurfs film.
The town has decided to keep all of its homes Smurf-blue, because its reputation as "el pueblo pitufo" -- the Smurfs' town -- has attracted droves of cash-wielding Smurf aficionados.
"We calculate that around 210,000 tourists have visited us since we painted ourselves blue two years ago, and people keep on coming," Juzcar Mayor David Fernandez told Reuters on Tuesday. He added that the blue houses and the tourism that they have attracted have helped Juzcar to survive through Spain's economic recession.
Juzcar is a traditional village in the mountains of Andalusia, whose homes were originally all white. But in 2011, Sony Pictures picked this town of 250 people as the site for a Smurfs 3D movie premiere, and it asked the town to remake itself in blue paint. The company promised to repaint Juzcar's homes in their original white, but after noticing all the publicity and tourist money that the blue homes and the Smurf paraphernalia brought, local residents decided to stay blue forever.
Check out these images of the Pitufo town.