Being organized by Association of Bangalore Animation Industry, the upcoming ABAI Fest ’06 to be held on Sunday 3 September at the JN Tata Auditorium, Indian Institute of Science Campus, Bangalore, has generated great enthusiasm and anticipation from across the Animation Ecosystem including professionals, students, studios and sponsors.
To quote ABAI Fest 2006 Chairman Ashish Kulkarni, “Though there are a few elements dedicated to the business part, this is not a business seminar. The whole event is focused on enhancing skill sets and it is our great pleasure to witness great enthusiasm and anticipation from animation professionals not only from Bangalore but from across South India as well as from other parts of the country. We already have had 450 registrations and the event will be completely booked to maximum capacity of 750 seats in the next couple of days”
“It demonstrates the hunger that our talent base has for learning and enhancing their skill sets” he added.
“We thought that we are planning our first event at a very short notice and almost at the end of the third quarter of 2006. Although the time was short the push and support received from all educational institutions, tech companies and working professionals has been overwhelming” added ABAI President Dr Suparno Chaudhari.
Sponsors for the fest include Intel which is the platinum sponsor, IBM which is the technology partner, Gold Sponsor Arena and Adobe, Silver Sponsor MAAC, Kit sponsor Visual Computing Labs, a division of Tata Elxsi, Online Media Partner Animation Xpress.com. The event is also supported by FICCI Animation & Gaming Forum, CG Tantra, TASI and Isearch. “We had very little time in which to get this event organized and I must say we are grateful to all our sponsors, partners and supporters for their involvement” shared Chaudhari.
Commenting on the Government response, ABAI’s Chetan S shared “The Government response has been quick and highly supportive. Dr. Anup K Pujari, the Principal Secretary accepted our invitation instantly and has confirmed his participation”
And it is not as if only the professionals and exhibitors are awaiting ABAI Fest 06. Students are equally excited. MAAC’s Aruna Kumar pointed out that “Students from all over have been constantly calling up and enquiring and are pretty excited to attend the event and in some cases even parents requested if they could attend the event”
Giving an official quote on behalf of ABAI, Chairman Kulkarni shared, “Indian animation has evolved. Be it Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Trivandrum, Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi or Pune, the animation, VFX and gaming vertical is growing across the country”.
“Indian studios from across the country are delivering on time to International clients and constantly enhancing the quality, Indian studios are announcing co financing, co production deals for features, we are witnessing the announcement of several features for the local market, the broadcasters are getting bullish on local content. The success story of Indian animation is certain and we have just started seeing investment interest in this space”
“Besides the budding successes of Indian studios, the presence and active involvement of Industry bodies like FICCI Animation and Gaming Forum and NASSCOM, Associations like ABAI, ASIFA and TASI, Dedicated Media like Animation Xpress.com and various events like FICCI Frames, FICCI BAF Awards, Nasscom Animation India, Anifest, 24FPS, ABAI Fest etc are evidence of a maturing eco system” he further added.
With Technology vendors like Intel, IBM , Adobe and Ample partnering the event and with an audience full of artists, the bumper prizes at the event feature tools and equipment that are dear to the Animation Community.
Not to be missed is the Shake and Final Cut Pro quiz contest which one can win an Ipod and a best participation award of a Toon boom kit. With Intel & IBM as key sponsors one cannot rule out what additional goodies lie in store. Digital waves has also announced a prize of a power X system for the lucky dip winner.
The event will also have a line up of exhibitors displaying their ware and services for the animation community. Attendees will have the opportunity to sample and check out offerings from Intel, IBM, Adobe, Arena, Toonskool, MAAC, VCL, Ample Technologies,
Animation Xpress.com, CG Tantra, TASI, Animation Today and of course ABAI. “I have never seen such excitement from exhibitors who have been charged up for over a week now. Exhibitors have been calling me, taking measurements and preparing as if it were a week long festival rather than a day long event” said ABAI secretary and SGS Creations head Sandeep Gangatkar.
Unity for a Better future
The optimism and unity in the Bangalore animation circles is evident in the way the festival is being approached. Commenting on the collaborative spirit ABAI’s C Prakash from Raydrops Studios commented “Though the birth of ABAI has been a recent one it felt like the whole animation fraternity knew each other for years and the support just poured in from all over”
“As a studio owner I feel this is an ideal opportunity where studios of different sizes get together to put forth a better tomorrow” concluded ABAI’s Venkat, CEO Rainbow Animation Studios.