Aditi Chitre, artist, painter and film maker recently screened her 2D animated short film, The Mall on Top of my House.
The film which was completed in September 2006 has a very painterly style to it and deals with the displacement of the fishing community in Mumbai. People who have been thrown off their land to make way for progress i.e. bigger buildings, more malls and more golf courses.
The central character is pale and wide-eyed from living underground, a hiding place – away from the sun and fresh air. Through his long walk from his hole, across the city and to the pile of industrial waste called â€?seaâ€™, he encounters blaring horns, monumental malls and road maps and signs that tell him where he can and cannot step. He reminisces about a lost past, but is brought back to a threatened present.
Speaking to AnimationXpress.com, Aditi Chitre who graduated from the Faculty of Fine Art, MSU Baroda shared, â€?I had no prior experience in any aspect of filmmaking and intended to do animation for certain shots in the film and use live action for the rest. As it turned out, the entire film was animated. I had no prior experience in animation either, but coordinating with an animation artist took care of that problemâ€?
â€?I came upon this subject as I live very close to the fishing communityâ€¦ I have grown up in Bandra and have walked through the fishing village here n number of times. Watching Bandra change before my very eyes and disappearing behind the mushrooming malls is what provided fodder to the film.â€? said Aditi.
The film was entirely funded by Public Service Broadcasting Trust (PSBT) and made in a five month schedule from May to September 2006 with a team of four people and at a cost of under Rs 100,000.
So far the versatile artist cum film maker has screened her animated short film at The Open Frame Film Festival, Delhi, Sept 2006, Wide angle Democracy film festival Bangalore, Dec 2006, 8th Madurai Film Festival, Madurai, Dec 2006, International Peace Festival, Mumbai Dec 2006, Vikalp screening in association with Awishkar & Short Circuit Mumbai Dec 2006, and also telecast on DD1 and DD News Oct 2006 in a short span of four months. Additionally, it is also selected for the 2007 Tricky Women Film Festival competition, organized by culture 2 culture, Austria.