Indian animation is winning big – hearts as well as awards! Independent animator and IIT Bombay IDC student, Divakar Kuppan’s well known animated short, The Fox of the Palmgrove has bagged the ‘Best Indian Animation Film’ at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Film Festival 2020 (SVPIFF) in the student category and has also won ‘The Best Animation’ award at Trame Independent 2020, Italy.
The animated short that depicts “how a random television visual triggers the memories of an old man in which we go through a sequence of random events which summarises his entire life,” has also been chosen as a finalist at International Student Animated Film AnimaFantasia Festival 2020. The Fox of the Palmgrove has bagged 12 awards to date in its 12 months festival run!
An elated Kuppan shared with Animation Xpress, “It’s been a year since my graduation film started its festival run last November with a huge recognition of Bhimsain Emerging Talent award at Anifest 2019. The world has gone through a huge phase of metamorphosis in the last 12 months and I ain’t no exception in this. Last week the film fetched me two awards – from Gujarat and Italy, tallying 12 awards in 12 months of festival run in 31 festivals. All this feels like a dream and means a lot to me. I hope I can animate out all the films that are nesting up in my mind.”
The Fox of the Palmgrove is a vividly visual one that looks like a montage chalk drawings. Being an ardent student of Andrei Tarkovsky films and an hardcore student of the works of Russian Animator Alexander Petrov, the IDC student experimented with Tarkovsky’s visualisation/direction using Petrov’s ‘Paint on Glass Animation’ technique.
There’s a strong filmmaking and creative bug inside Kuppan that pushes him to conjure plots and take ideas for his upcoming films. He further added, “Along with making films, it’s very important to get the films out there for the people to watch and criticise them, and give feedback. That’s the ultimate thing for any filmmaker. I think this festival run experience was totally a mind opener for me. I was travelling and attending the festivals before the lockdown that forced the festivals to go virtual. I think it’s very important for independent filmmakers to attend the festivals and connect with fellow filmmakers from all around the world. In the age of the internet, film festivals provide a great space for face to face networking and ensure promising opportunities.”
Kuppan is very hopeful that the world will be back to normalcy soon and is looking forward to a similar enriching and successful stint for his second film Kindergarten, a mockumentary whose trailer will be launched online this month, probably in the second week, before it embarks on its festival run later on.