Future of VFX and Animation in INDIA
Image courtesy: Indtoday
What’s the anticipated future of VFX and animation in India?
What are the possible threats and drawbacks it might encounter?
3D animation/VFX is the postmodern by-product of ubiquitous ideas elicited through magnificent vision. Carrying out the analysis of future VFX on the basis of history, market demand, and the audience perspective is challenging considering the fast pace of unpredictable change happening across the globe. Twenty years ago people predicted there would be flying cars in the future and 20 years later the year 2020 turns out to be just the year of a pandemic that collapsed the entire global economy. On the other hand, technology did achieve a remarkable transformation to the level nobody had ever anticipated 20 years ago.
Today Saudi Arabia is all set for its revolutionary dream project ‘The Line’ which is precisely a glimpse into the upcoming Gen-Z future. It is indeed a perspective of how the future is going to look like. ‘The Line’ signifies the linear wonder city which is 170 km long but only 200 meters wide and 500m above sea level. This miraculous project is estimated to be completed within the span of at least 50 years. What makes it a future vision is that no roads and no traditional vehicles will be allowed inside ‘The Line’, in fact, the ultra-urban city will only entertain transportation which will be simulated by artificial intelligence. From one end to the other end, it’ll only take 20 minutes for a person to travel along with having the facilities like hospitals or supermarkets accessible within 5 minutes anywhere from the city. Most important of all, the city will run with 100% renewable energy and shall accommodate around 9 million people. Apparently, ‘The Line’ deploys the upcoming future of artificial intelligence, high-end technological enhancement, and a visionary glance at renewable energy resources. Undoubtedly, in a future like this, the forthcoming role of Animation and VFX is obvious at least to the people who are vigilant and updated.
VFX could be defined as the art of the postmodern era. The animation and VFX industry welcomes highly talented and inquisitive traditional artists, painters, etc to turn their art into motion pictures which is a separate art by itself. Compared to other arts, this is the most profitable one too. It’s one of the rarest positions where artists make more than what Doctors and Engineers earn.
There was an uprising demand for more content during the Covid-19 lockdown period and that was truly a bewildering outbreak that emerged out of blue. People being locked inside started consuming more digital pleasures resulting in a hike in exploration towards the latest arena. The evoked curiosity forced the digital platforms to investigate the latest trends to appease the hungered audience. This backed the Animation and VFX industry and extended its hand to a fresh popular medium.
Animation movies and Indian audience: Unlike the western audience, the Indian audience were not in favour of animated movies before because of the misconception that animated movies are only meant for kids even when they enjoy them. But that trend soon changed and the Indian audience started to watch and appreciate animated/VFX movies just like any other movies. With the entry of high-production animated movies from the studios like Disney, Indian spectators started to realize the quality and the reachability of such movies which often introduce spectacular concepts. As a result, the favourability of animated movies increased among Indians yet an authentic Indian animated movie still remains a concept here. Meanwhile, the western market benefits from this scarcity and bags economic favour from the countries like India which hesitates to make an initial move.
In the future, it is sure to say that we’ll have huge production houses for animated movies too with concepts matching international standards because the wave of change is already found happening. The recent release of the Indian movie ‘Brahmastra’ received a few backlashes for its storyline but even the negative reviews praised the quality of the VFX implemented and that alone welcomed a huge number of audience who just came to witness the magic of VFX proclaims the need of more VFX-based, multiverse concept movies in India.
The amount of employment created by the VFX industry alone is incredible. With the surge of overall growth in the industry, the umpteen number of employment opportunities kept arousing with time. On top of that, the possibility of freelance options enables someone to make extra vfx career opportunities as well.
reflected in the industry through the sprout of various studios, expert technicians and artists. Academies that moulds animation and VFX artists usually invite well-known VFX technicians from all around the world to introduce world-class techniques to the students. This will eventually help in uplifting the Indian standards of animation and VFX but only with the aid of sound financial backing.
The sprout of numerous kids/cartoon channels: Back in the day, the cartoon/kids channel options were too low that kids watch the same TV shows over and over without losing interest. Although, nowadays channels realized the actual potential of cartoon channels and they keep on researching to find out the new levels that excite children. This enlarged the industry further as well.
The highly competitive market of the VFX industry contributed abundantly to its development solely because of its competitive nature. The industry is in its phase of a fleeting shift in updates so as to compete with its peers. With the arrival of mass movies like Bahubali and KGF, the minimum VFX standard expectations from the public elevated and there is never a going back. So the peer pressure forced the other filmmakers to raise to that level effectively boosted the VFX industry. The economic impact positively reflected in the overall GDP growth and it motivated the Indian Government to announce special allowances for the development of the Animation and VFX industry in the last Budget presentation.
‘The Economic Times’ published on February 2022 soon after the Budget presentation reported that the government announced the creation of a task force on Tuesday to make recommendations for how to advance the animation, visual effects, gaming, and comics (AVGC) industry.
Citing Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s words, The Economic Times reported that the sector has enormous potential for hiring young people.
According to her, “an AVGC promotion task group comprising all stakeholders will be established to recommend strategies to actualize this and increase domestic capacity for serving our markets and the worldwide demand.”
The estimations made by Deloitte denote that the move will help India reach its potential of 20 lakh jobs in the sector and according to Jehil Thakkar, partner and sector head for media & entertainment at Deloitte India, India is well-positioned to benefit from this ecosystem, he said, adding that these talents are essential for the metaverse’s expansion.
This suggests how India has influenced the VFX global market and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman realized the potential of the industry capable enough to provide employment to thousands of people which itself yells the need for further inclusiveness in the budget.
VFX is not just limited to the media and entertainment industry. The aid of VFX in the education sector conveniently and productively functions among students as a splendid study aid. The visual representations provide the students with an uplifted understanding of the concept. Likely, the architecture arena also benefits by making the clients and the builders aware of the exact idea of the end result.
The gaming industry is hugely dependent on animation and VFX, in the entertainment sector there always was, is, and will be a special place for the Gaming industry no matter what.
The anticipated future of the VFX industry is obviously bright and shiny. But certain challenges that could threaten the entire spirit of curiosity which essentially is the kernel soul of VFX industry still stands a chance. Although the term ‘perfection’ itself is a myth, when the VFX graphics already achieved the level of realism, there arises the question of what’s next? This can be answered with different varieties of speculations but simply put, it’s safe to say that it can even go up to the level of creating real-life lookalike characters out of nowhere and could possibly duplicate each and every realistic movement. But as said above, if the spirit of curiosity is lost, it suggests the soul itself is lost. Fortunately, this is very unlikely to happen considering the way and mode VFX works. Artists do not just work in a technical and aesthetic way, they always make use of psychological approach as well in order to spark the curiosity of the spectators and science proves that curiosity never settles down in human beings as it is what makes us humans. So the future of VFX is safe and sturdy as long as curiosity and excitement trait remains in human beings.