MANILA -- Two years ago, a Malaysia-based Filipino made headlines for reaching 10,000 votes for his incredibly designed LEGO Voltron set.
The toy company gave the green light for software architect Leandro Tayag’s design to be produced and sold all over the world.
According to a report, it sold out at the San Diego Comic Con last year.
This year, another Filipino is attempting to win the approval of LEGO through his detailed Sesame Street set.
Ivan Guerrero, a Filipino filmmaker, submitted his design in 2017 to the LEGO Ideas website, which caters to a community of LEGO enthusiasts. This website allows toy enthusiasts to submit design ideas. Those that reach 10,000 votes are considered for possible commercial production.
Guerrero’s set has recently reached more than 8,000 supporters. Many of the supporters are LEGO and Sesame Street fans or parents who also want the set produced for their children.
With 260 days to go, the set only needs less than 2,000 votes to win.
Based on the photos uploaded on the LEGO Ideas website, the set is sure to tug at the heartstrings of millions of people who grew up watching the educational television show, which has been on air since the 1960s.
"I grew up on Sesame Street. They were some of my first teachers. They taught me how to read, write, count and laugh. I'm sure millions of people around the world has the same experience as I do," said Guerrero, who is also a big fan of Jim Henson who created the muppet characters of the show.
He is hoping to reach 10,000 this year, which coincides with the 50th anniversary of Sesame Street.
Besides featuring several minifigures of popular characters like Big Bird, Elmo, Cookie Monster, Oscar the Grouch and Bert and Ernie, the designed set is based on the apartment where Sesame Street’s main characters lived.
The rooms, furniture and decoration inside them are all based on the show’s sets from different decades. Even Big Bird’s nest and Oscar’s trash can are included.
“The design for the building took several months to build. It was a great little hobby for a while. I would spend a couple of hours each week carefully researching the various rooms in the apartment building,” he said, explaining that he spent a lot of time reading articles and watching videos.
Some parts, he said, were designed from his imagination.
“For instance, the hallway area inside the building doesn’t really get featured on the show that much. In order to create the room in LEGO form, I actually researched old New York apartment buildings from the 1960s and 1970s and attempted to treat 123 Sesame Street as a building that was built around the same time,” he said.
There are a lot of other show references hidden in the set. And Guerrero has not stopped updating it. In recent months, he has released his “discarded ideas” series, which featured other Sesame Street characters and items that he was not able to fit into the original design.
His set has been previously featured in several pop culture and toy sites. He is hoping fellow Filipinos would help him achieve his goal.
People can vote by creating a Lego Ideas account and clicking the support button on this page.