ASIFA India recently announced the successful completion of the second batch of Women Creators Program held in partnership with Unreal Engine. After a rigorous shortlisting process, 21 finalists were chosen for a six-week mentorship.
To empower and train women creators from South East Asia, Asifa India incubated the first ever fellowship program for women creators in partnership with Epic Games during 2021. Under the leadership of Dancing Atoms Studios Inc. creative director Saraswathi Vani Balgam and looking at the success of the first batch of talented women, the program’s outreach was extended across South East Asia in 2022. This new version was designed and crafted by Vani and Shruti Verma from Unreal Engine. There was an overflow of applicants from all parts of Asia.
Epic Games along with Asifa India, Open Air Films and Perforce Software as partners, provided women producers with in-depth training and mentoring. Vani championed the women creators from batch one to lead the new southeast Asia batch.
Asifa India team including its outreach and community services director Sanjay Khimesara, core committee members including Sesha Prasad A.R., Siva Kumar Kasetty, Ramakrishnan Vinod and R.K. Polina as well as manager Priyanka Ajit reached out to very specific talented working professionals in 10 countries and ensured the quality of participants.
The creators were given complete freedom to bring their own ideas and concepts and bring them to life from pre-visualisation to finalising them with the help of real time engine-Unreal Engine 5.0.
The mentors of the women creators program batch two – were Ananya Srivastava, Gautami Vegiraju, Gayatri Rao, Hina Saiyada, Nida Arshia, Pragti Wadhwa, Rouank Magoo and Rutul Patel and Aayshman Pandey.
The program inspired and trained the women creators in the SEAC to adopt realtime production in their workflow. The participant fellows include Aadhya Raj (Mumbai), Abhirama Tejas (Mumbai), Bhavpreet Ghai Talwalkar (Mumbai), Bhumika Thakuria (Indore), Charu Tak (Bengaluru), Ellen Xie (Jakarta,Indonesia), Geethika Dayala (Hyderabad), Jessica Tan (Singapore), Meenu Shekhawat (Bengaluru), Morsal Alemi (Afghanistan), Pracheta Ahana Alam (Dhaka), Poornima Meegammana (Shrilanka), Ritika Bose (Bengaluru), Riza Qureshi (Karachi, Pakistan), Serena Dhillon (Mumbai), Smitha Pandey (Mumbai), Sri Keerthi (Challapalli), Vishakha Bardoloi (Bengaluru), Vrinda Sood (New Delhi) and Zubaida Nila (Malaysia).
There were skilled, talented, professionals who were helping them at all stages of their film making process. The program progressed in a phased manner with a pre-visualisation evaluation and shortlisting 11 candidates.
The six-week intensive training program covered animation, DDC workflows, world building, terrain tools, lighting and post processing, material editor, sequence, livelink and blueprints. Epic Games business lead India/SEA Shruti Verma and tech evangelist Arvind Neelakantan played a key role in the implementation of both editions of WCP with great commitment. Quentin Staes-Polet from Epic Games has been a strong influence and instrumental in making this programme successful.
The Open Air team, led by Wasim Khan, managed all the workflow and scheduling for the candidates. Ramesh Anumakoda and his team helped with technical support. All the 21 applicants were supported by free training for all the weeks. Unreal has once again proved that it believes in community building and continues to create opportunities for women in film, gaming, VFX and animation.
It was a paid programme for the women creators batch two. Gitanjali Rao also reviewed the ideas of the women creators. The mentors were super excited and thrilled and everyone celebrated the victory of a successful completion. Asifa India truly believes in making an impact on the people around.
Please enjoy the films created by Women creators batch one and batch two:
Batch one – shorts – Blog-
Batch- two Films on Vimeo-
All the Women Creators from batch two , will share their voices and the making of their projects on 28 September 2022, at 7.00 pm IST. Please register on https://tinyurl.com/wcpbatch2 and celebrate the films of the women creators programme.