Animation industry is here to stay, provided the Government comes up with adequate support, said animation experts from across the country at the Nasscom Seminar on Animation India 2005 at Hyderabad.
AK Madhavan, CEO, Crest Communications, Biren Ghose, CEO, Animation Bridge, Rajiv Sangari, COO, Maya Entertainment, Kim Young Joo, CEO, GITCT, Ashish Kulkarni, COO, Jadooworks, Jyotirmoy Saha, General Manager, UTV, P Jayakumar, CEO, Toonaz Animation were some of the animation bigwigs present at the seminar. Kiran Karnik, President, Nasscom, also addressed the inaugural session.
The session saw animation experts addressing their concerns to the Government. Suryanarayana Y, Executive Director, Colourchips, said, “We appeal to the Government that at least 10 to 30 per cent of the animation content should be made of Indian origin. This way, the Government would also be able to provide employment to those living in rural and semi-urban towns who have innovative ideas.”
Ashish Kulkarni, COO, Jadooworks, forwarded a concern that is being faced by most of the animation experts—a complete lack of training among the professionals. “If the Government takes up the initiative of coming up with good institutions that would provide adequate technical knowledge, then the animation companies wouldn’t have to train them from scratch,” he said. Kulkarni added that institutions like IIT should bring forth professionals in animation industry and the industry would really gain in return.”
The animation industry although just five years old has a huge potential to grow, pointed out President Nasscom Kiran Karnik. He said, “Our aim is to make this seminar an annual event and bring it to an international platform. Although animation industry is just five years old, there are many areas of opportunity that have not been tapped so far.”
Acknowledging the concerns of the industry, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Dr YSR Reddy said that he would ensure that Hyderabad would see a lot of facilities for the animation experts. “The state is contemplating to start an animation academy in Hyderabad,” he said, adding, “If we really want this industry to grow then it is essential that we tap all the human resources, which includes urban as well as rural. Reddy pointed out, “There is hidden talent in the rural areas and if all resources are tapped, we will soon match up to the countries leading in animation. In fact, we will come up with better quality animation designs than Korea.”
However, Reddy stressed that it is also essential for the bottlenecks to be filled. “Animation industry worldwide is substantially large and is around Rs 64,000 crore. For India to be prominent on the map, it is essential from the Government’s side to provide the right infrastructure like low cost housing, low cost studios, low cost quality power and congenial environment. Hyderabad Government is ready to provide all these facilities to the animation industry so that the world recognises us as the next hub for animation,” Reddy said.
The first day of the seminar ended on the note that it was time that Indian animation experts stop undermining the Indian resources and adopt those foreign business models that could really click in India. However, Biren Ghose, CEO, Animation Bridge, made a very interesting observation – “The India brand for animation is still a few years away from getting established. However, it will happen when all Indian animation experts will have a universal track record of consistent performance.”