Evolution of Indian animation

Animation means creating a set of images in a pattern that amplifies our imagination and takes us on a magical journey. These images can be drawn, painted or crafted using any means of artistic methods available. Amongst the big names of Pixar & Disney, it is a little known fact that the Indian animation industry is one of the oldest animation industries in the world.


Some little know facts about the Indian animation industry:

  • Dadasaheb Phalke, Father of Indian Cinema, is also the first Indian animator. In 1914, he made an animation film about the growth of a peapod into a plant through stop-motion animation.
  • In 1956, Clair Weeks, a Disney Studios animator was invited by the Films Division of India to set up & train animators for the first ever Indian animation studios.
  • The first Indian animated film was The Banyan Deer in 1957.
  • Veteran animators Bhimsain & Ram Mohan trained under Clair Weeks and started their career in Film Division’s Cartoon Unit.
  • A Japanese film maker Sako & Ram Mohan made an epic animated movie ‘Ramayana- The Legend of Prince Rama’ which received outstanding reviews abroad.

Current status

The Indian animation industry has grown by leaps and bounds over the past 10 years. India has finally embraced the idea of creating a believable animated product.

  • Roadside Romeo , O My Friend Ganesha & Hanuman were animated movies produced with the help of brilliant 2D & 3D animation in 2008
  • ‘Arjun- The Warrior Prince’ was released in 2012 in India and US. The sheer quality and brilliance of animation unlocked new avenues for the industry and was widely appreciated world over.
  • Big Hollywood production houses & studios have business tie-ups with Indian production houses and studios.
  • Animation institutes are investing in 2D& 3D training along with various other courses related to film making technology.

The future of the industry

The Indian film industry still has a long way to go before it can gain its foothold in the international market. It needs to:

  • Invest more in technology and develop infrastructure related to film making.
  • Track and train talented individuals into successful animators.
  • Arrange for onsite and offsite training methods to increase credibility of animators.
  • Set up more animation and film making institutes that teach about the various courses needed to make a career in animated film making.
  • Arrange for more workshop and seminars to create awareness about the benefits of animation in an ever growing film industry.
  • Encourage beginners and established animators to create and develop new films and allow them to experiment with their creativity, thus broadening their horizons.
  • VFX, sound effects, light effects, computer graphics are used heavily in almost every film nowadays and the industry needs to focus on perfecting it; harnessing the available technology and also importing better resources.

With Hollywood collaborating with Indian production houses, outsourcing of animation and technological work from abroad has helped India achieve the expertise in understanding how to go about it in a more professional manner. There are a number of VFX companies operating in India at the moment catering to various clients in domestic circuit as well as internationally. The Indian animation & film industry will continue to strive and achieve the technical & creative excellence to move forward with gleaming hope.


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