January 19, 2014 posted by

More Indian Animation 2

Once again, another column devoted to the constantly growing animation industry (and fandom) in India. These stories are culled from the October 2013 posts of India’s online industry newsletter, Animation Xpress. I monitor this site so you don’t have to:

October 4. Gulliver and the Lilliputs, a 72-minute 3D movie, is announced for this December by Chennai-based Pentamedia Graphics. Judging by the two ugly theatrical posters shown with the press release, it will be horrible. Let’s hope that they hearken back to the American animation releases of the 1930s and 1940s, when studios had their best artists work on the movies and assigned their worst artists to do the posters.


“ had a conversation with V.Chandrasekaran, Chief Managing Director of Pentamedia to know more this movie. Please shed light on the story line of Gulliver and Lilliputs?
 This story line is based on the original story written by Jonathan Swift. Lemuel Gulliver is a doctor who longs for adventure. A shipwreck leaves him swept ashore on the land of Lilliput – inhabited by people no bigger than his finger. Gulliver is taken captive by the Lilliputians who present him before the emperor. A series of interesting events takes place after that.
 Who are the protagonists and antagonists in this movie?
 Gulliver is the protagonist in this film and is having a giant-like appearance of the hero which is unbelievable to the little Lilliputians, who are just six inches tall. Antagonists in this film are Flimnap and Skyresh. Ferocious by look, Skyresh is a magician by nature who always thinks of ways to put an end to Gulliver. Seeking the help of Flimnap – this Admiral of Lilliput, knots up a plan against Gulliver yet he has no particular reason to hate Gulliver. The emperor is forced to give Death sentence to Gulliver as per the plan hooked up by Skyresh Bolgolam and Flimnap.
 Why did you choose this story line? 
We started the work in 2012 and completed the same by mid 2013.Gulliver is quite popular among the teenagers as his story is a part of their English non-detailed in schools. And as such it will be appealing for them to see this Giant hero and the six inch people on screen, that too through the 3D glass. […] Can you share the key credits of the film? 
The movie is directed by Anita Udeep, Produced by Pentamedia, Writing was stylized to suit the international audience by the American script writer Alexandria and Music is given by Rob Reich.
 What are your upcoming projects? 
Pentamedia has completed the pre-production of another digital 3D animation film ‘Mustafa Vs The Magician’ and the production is in progress using Blender. This film is expected to be completed in Jan 2014. Pentamedia is coming out with new courses on how to make animated / VFX/ CG films with the features of Pre-production, Production, Post-production, VFX, Marketing and Distribution. Among the trained students, the skilled ones will get an opportunity to work in our current project, ‘Mustafa Vs the Magician’.”

Here’s the result:

October 4. “4th Anime Convention Receives Footfall of 8000+.” This article “By AnimationXpress Team” was written by someone with a poorer grasp of English grammar and spelling than usual.


The 4th Anime Convention was on September 27-29, 2013 at Marwah Studios in New Delhi. The article and its accompanying photographs make it clear that the convention was dominated by South Korea, and in addition to all the Indian fans, it was a trade show for animation in general, not just anime, with participation by animation and video game studios from Switzerland to Japan.


“The fourth Anime Convention, India was inaugrated on the 27th September, 2013 at Marwah Studios, Film City, Noida by H.E. Joon-gyu Lee, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea, All the invited speakers and guests were feliciated by the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea, HE Joon-gyu Lee and Sandeep Marwah, President, Marwah Studios. This was followed by the launch of Sri Ratna & Kim Suro, a Graphic Novel, publishd by National Book Trust of India. The editor, Kumar Vikram and the Graphic Artist, Soumitra Dasgupta unveiled the Graphic Novel along with Sandeep Marwah and HE. Joon-gyu Lee. “A rare experience to the world of animation, gaming and more a space of learning, discovery and interaction.This year Anime Con is a journey unlike any other event” said, Nitesh Rohit the festival director and co-founder of Cinedarbaar. Anime Convention opened with a tremenduos crowd and housefull sessions. First day saw film showcase of Korean and Iranian Animation and Workshops for the children on Voice Acting, Manga and a fun workshop on understanding ‘type’ in the context of design. Fragile Heart of Moe, a non- fiction film on the Dojinshi culture of Japan was also showcased at the convention in the presence of the Director, Bharath Murthy, who introduced the film followed by a Q&A session. Historian Ryan Holmberg offered a glimpse at manga produced in the wake of the catastrophic events of Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Meltdown and Tsunami in Japan in 2011. The second day saw presentation of works of Production I.G, by the producer Nao Hirasawa; Myriad world of Mariovon Rickenbach, an independent Video Game Designer from Switzerland, Comics and Collaboration by ShoheiEruma and Vidyun Sabhaney. A full day Manga Drawing workshop was also conducted by Bharath Murthy, Mangaka and a Filmaker on Saturday. […] The three day convention also saw many exhibition stalls of comics, books, anime merchandise, food etc. In all it was a big success with participation from multiple countries like Korea, Japan, Switzerland and USA, and an approx footfall of 8000 on all three days.”

October 9. “Stalwarts Productions’ short ‘Pahal- The Iniative’ wins at My Mumbai Short Film Festival 2013.”

I love this: “What is Pahal-The Initiative all about? 
The very title of the film ‘Pahal-The Initiative’ brings out a clear cut idea.” Oh, sure; the title alone will explain everything.

This is more informative:

“‘Pahal- The Initiative, 2D Animation short film made by Mumbai based Stalwarts Productions won the VFX Animation Award at My Mumbai Short Film Festival 2013 which was slated on 3rd October, 2013 at Ravindra Natya Mandir in Mumbai. This is a 2 minute film made in August 2013 and targets the Indian society as a whole. interacted with Mikil Puthran, Director of ‘Pahal- The Initiative’ and Stalwarts Productions and got to know the Making process of this Animation short film. […] Through this short film, our team has tried to show that the physically disabled individuals are also gifted with capabilities which can contribute towards the betterment of our society. But this can be possible, only if our society takes the Initiative of encouraging the disabled people by giving them the rightful opportunities along with better standard of living which can add up to their prosperity.”

The article includes the film’s poster and a weblink to it. It’s pretty heavy-handed; an animated editorial cartoon. Here it is:

October 14.

“Navratri might be over, but you can still revel in its festivities with Vaibhav Studios’ latest animated Fevicol Navratri TVC. If you have missed it, you should definitely watch this fun TVC which has the signature elephants of Fevicol logo breaking into garba moves.”

Yeah. Navratri is a Hindu religious holiday (“Hindus mark the advent of winter with 9 nights/days of fast and prayer to Durga, the Mother Goddess who embodies all the power of the universe” – also dancing and partying, apparently); and Fevicol is an Indian brand of adhesive. The Animation Xpress story is about how Vaibhav Studios has made a CGI 10-second Fevicol commercial themed for Navratri. The story includes storyboards, complete credits, and a link to the TVC on YouTube – which leads to a 13” CGI “Happy Raksha Bandhan” TVC this August for Fevicol. Happy happy, joy joy!

The same issue of Animation Xpress has an illustrated story about how you can get a free Chhota Bheem app for your cell phone.


“It’s time to activate the Kid’s Corner on your Windows Phone and give your tiny tots a reason to really smile and laugh about, as Chhota Bheem is coming to town to entertain your little ones. They can now lose themselves in the world of their favorite animation character and best friend, Chhota Bheem and his gang on the ‘Play with Chhota Bheem’ app. With the introduction of the brand new app on Windows 8 and Windows Phone, you can watch your children as they gleefully interact with Chhota Bheem via fun games and other interactive content.
The app has been designed keeping in mind the love children share for the eminently lovable Chhota Bheem and offers an engaging experience that will keep them busy.”

If you don’t mind giving your cell phone to your tiny tots to play with for hours.

“This app is free and available for download exclusively from the Windows Store and the Windows Phone Store. You can also download this app on your Windows Phone 8 and make it part of the Kid’s Corner on your smartphone.”

Green Gold Animation, the producer of the Chhota Bheem childrens’ TV cartoons and theatrical animated features, apparently considers this good advertising. The samples shown of the app are captioned in English, although the TV cartoons and movies are in Hindi.


  • “tiny tot” … ugh! let’s hope that india isn’t that far behind the times and that they came up with that term due to poor translation.

    anyway, I had no idea what chhota bheem is, so I looked it up and found this …

    while this series might have had some promise … the series has a good premise (a young boy with amazing powers living in a small village in rural india (that’s the type of theme that anime artists would excel at bringing to life), and its character designs (that are not exceptional, but at lest pleasant). unfortunately, the series is produced in horrible 2d flash-style animation and aimed at a very young audience.

    there’s tons of examples on youtube. apparently chhota bheem teams up with Krishna in a new movie that had a release in usa theaters on January 18 …

    • I don’t know … these press releases about Indian animation are full of bad translations. Since the release around “tiny tots” is very smooth English, “tiny tots” looks deliberate to me.

      The Green Gold studio website lists only two Chhota Bheem theatrical animated features, “Chhota Bheem and the Curse of Damyaan” and “Chhota Bheem and the Throne of Bali”. I assume that all of the Chhota Bheem movies listed on Wikipedia are limited animation TV movies, especially at 22 minutes — that sounds like a half-hour TV special with commercials. I haven’t seen any news about the release in U.S.A. theaters on January 18 (yesterday).

    • it looks like the film has been released in 5 theaters here in the usa …

    • The January 18th U.S.A. theatrical release lists five theaters; two in California (Fremont and Hollywood), and one each in Georgia (Atlanta?), Illinois (Chicago?), and New York (NYC?). The movie is “Chhota Bheem and the Throne of Bali”, one of the two theatrical releases. The other movies are available on DVDs on the Green Gold Pictures store website, mostly for ₹149 each, in two languages (English & Hindi). The two theatrical feature DVDs are ₹199 each, in four languages (English, Hindi, Tamil, & Telugu). These prices probably do not include international shipping. There were 89 Indian rupees to the U.S. dollar the last time I looked.
      Since there were Chhota Bheem theatrical features in 2012 and 2013, I assume that there will be one later in 2014.

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