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Indian animation industry gets more creative

October 2007
Indian animation industry gets more creative

Indian-made animated films don't have a long history, and the first major success, Hanuman, was released just two years ago. Less than a dozen titles—such as Legend of Buddha and Ali Baba—have come out so far. Other ventures in this kind of filmmaking include Bhaggmati—Queen of Fortunes, which combines animation with live action. Now comes yet another breakthrough for the Indian animation industry. Media Factory is currently producing Magik, reportedly India's first 3D film. Slated for release in 2008, it has a budget of $5 million. India's animation industry, already worth $240 million, is projected to hit $1 billion before the middle of the next decade, as per U. K. Market.

At the same time, even as India makes more animated films, it has started to outsource certain assignments. And it's not merely because of the talent crunch; the costs are also rising. Lately, in what Chandigarh-based Tribune described as reverse outsourcing, some of this work is being sent to countries like Malaysia and the Philippines. Nevertheless, India-based animators (now numbering about 20,000) continue to do a lot for Western companies. As the paper adds, "The cost of producing a half-an-hour animated program in the U.S. and Canada was $250,000 to 400,000 and $120,000 in South Korea and Taiwan, whereas in India it is $60,000." Another Indian-made animated film, titled Cheenti Cheenti Bang Bang, will be released shortly.

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