FICCI FRAMES 2004 has animation as a special focus area. One of the exciting sessions on the subject yesterday was ‘Animation - Co-production and production values and expectations from India’.
Host for the session was Ashish Kulkarni, COO, Jadoo Works. The panelists in the session included well-known names in animation like Ajay Koshy, Phasespace, Tapaas Chakravarthy, DQ Entertainment Ltd., Arish Fyzee, Prana Studios Pvt. Ltd., Bob Last, Ink Animations, and Biren Ghosh of Animation Bridge.
The panel reflected at the Indian animation sector, which is growing at a phenomenal rate. Mature markets like US and Europe are looking at Indian studios not only for outsourcing but also for co – production possibilities. India, in fact, is expected to deliver high quality 3D and 2D work on the long form animation.
Talking of the co-production part of it Kulkarni elucidates, “Co-production implies the coming together of two producers for making a film, for which location is not important. It can happen at a domestic as well as an international level.”
Koshy reflected upon the strengths India has in this area. He stated, “India indeed has real good resources in terms of manpower and technology, need perhaps is for larger investments and more interaction between India and other countries which are interested in animation.” He also stated that the process had already begun, and fast paced globalisation is sure helping. Koshy, in addition, threw light on the finer points of co-production, and the hurdles to be overcome.
Chakravarthy of DQ Entertainment Ltd, in turn, underlined the fact that co-production in the Indian animation industry was purely company driven and thrust from the government was missing. He stated that both content and economy were important and due to the increase in production costs more and more companies were being attracted to co-production.
Fyzee, speaking on production values and expectations mentioned that production value in animation did not imply cheap work with a look good feel but rather the optimum utilization of the given spent. Fyzee stressed that the success of any co-production venture was dependent on choosing the right partner and the right project.
“Animation is one of the most modern forms of story telling,” said Bob Last of Ink Animations. He also emphasised on the need of a co-production treaty between UK and India.
The panel acknowledged that Indian animation industry is at a nascent stage and has a long way to go. Though there is talent available in India, the need was felt to have qualified animation schools in order to produce a larger amount of quality work. A word of caution was also made to all the players in the co-production business to secure their rights in order to ensure their paycheck. As mentioned by Ghosh of Animation Bridge, “Co-production is a business about rights but most people get it wrong.”