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Zest For Action Driving The Animation Market
 by: Zia Askari

Nasscom in India puts the animation marketsize at over Rs 2000 crore, the industry is getting bigger, craving for high-quality animation - now even the Indian film makers are following the Hollywood footsteps

With – Hollywood blockbusters like Lord of the Rings, the Matrix reload, Finding Nemo, pretty much dominating the box office, even Bollywood (Mumbai) is catching up with special effects embedded in Koi Mil Gaya, Rudraksh or Jajantaram Mamantaram. It's safe to say that digital filmmaking has arrived in full force and special effects are no longer so special.

Stars Wars, released back in the dim past of 1977, not only made its creator, George Lucas, a very wealthy man, but more importantly, it changed the way movies were made. No longer did a film need actual human beings to carry the story when multi-million dollar animated and special effects could do the trick.

This public taste for eye-popping effect work has proven insatiable and created a growing industry for computer animators. "According to Nasscom, the overall size of the market in content development, animation, engineering and design is a whopping Rs 2000 crore in India. So this industry is growing quite extensively and a desire to see high-quality action is driving the animation market," says Naveen Gupta, Vice President, Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics (MAAC), who is spearheading the company’s efforts in the animation education sector.

"There's always jobs for talented animators. At the beginning of this industry it was strictly the technicians who were using the software and it was tough to use. But slowly artists have seen what the technical people have been able to create. If you get an artist behind these machines and on the software, you start to develop incredible work. What has happened is that the artists have flooded into the market over the past three years and bar has continually risen." He explains.

MAAC with its set of 30 centers all over the country - offers 7 different courses in areas like animation, composition editing, visual effects and sound editing. “We have close to 1000 students enrolled with us and we are offering education in Discreet and Maya software,” he added.

In keeping with the industry trend of expansion, Maya too is planning to have more than 50 centers by the end of this year and is starting the expansion process by opening its centers in Bangalore and Chennai.

"The high-end studios like Crest Communication, Jadoo Works, UTV, Padmalaya Telefilms, Movie Pictures and Sahara TV are now pushing the digital envelope because of the high standards being set up globally. Now even Hollywood producers are looking at India as a favorable destination for outsourcing the content. We are engaged in talks with some foreign production houses for developing 3D animation, " Gupta informed.

Certainly there is a growing demand for highly skilled computer animators, not just tech--heads, but artist who can work in the digital world. "I think things will become 100 per cent digital in the next five years, and I may be stretching it," Gupta quips.

At present a fresher having animation and visual effects knowledge can start by earning close to Rs 7,500 per month. “This is an industry where your creativity is being rewarded. We have seen people starting their career at Rs 7,500 and soon moving upto Rs 25,000 in no time,” he added.

With more and more Hindi movies now going in for 3D animation and visual effects, which was predominantly regarded as a Hollywood phenomenon – Bollywood is now all set to follow the footsteps of its big brother.

About The Author

Zia Askari

I am a highly motivated, dedicated, passionate and creative individual. With excellent communication skills added to other qualities, it puts me in a strong position for corporate communications, copywriting, client services and media planning to achieve the desired goals. I have been into this fiend of journalism for more than 6 years now and have also indulged in writing books as well.

This article was posted on September 12, 2005


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