Co-productions: Pros & Cons

The first animation session at The Powai Ballrooms was on co production in animation and gaming. The speakers included Crest CEO AK Madhavan, DQ CEO Tapas Chakravarti, Toon Boom CEO Joan Vogelesang, UTV’s Animation Head Moy, and Cinnamon’s Chris RICE from UK. The session was moderated by Moving Pictures CMD,Ramesh Sharma. Amongst the highlights of the session were the awe inspiring Crest showreel and the presentations by Tapas and Chris. While Madhavan’s showreel featuring Pet Aliens demonstrated the stretch & squash in 3D, Tapas spoke about how and why one has to be careful while co producing. “We have completed close to 12 co pros in 2D, and 2 in 3D” beamed Tapas. Drawing from his experience Tapas explained that the shrinking of licensing fees and also pruning of subsidies in countries like Canada were making it difficult for producers to do it alone. “Besides one of the best things about a co pro is that all the parties involved get a joint platform for credits and publicity” he added. Co productions involve partners from different countries with different laws across the regions. The parties involved need to engage the best of lawyers who can read between the fine print and safegaurd interest. Continuing from where Tapas had finished, UTV’s Moy then drew attention to the fact that ‘Equity in projects always brings out the best in producers’ “There are more than 30 co pros currently signed on by Indian production houses” said Moy. Last up on the Dias was Chris Rice from Cinnamon UK, which is a part of the Quintus group. The company is a financier of and investor in animation. Chris demonstrated some slides of Finley the Fire Engine which was being co produced by Cinnamon and Kerela based Toonz Animation India. ” Be transparent with your partners ; they will know what your costs are” said Chris. “While the CO pros have a legal and monetary angle to them there is also a creative advantage that co producing offers” concluded Chris.