Sunday, June 4, 2023

Pradipto Sengupta: In a zone of his own animated film creations


Mail News Service

Born in Jharkhand’s Dhanbad, Pradipto was highly creative as a kid.  His  mother introduced  him to the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle,  the  magical  world  of  Jules  Verne  and  movies of Satyajit  Ray  at  a very young age. 

Since childhood, he wanted to make movies; however, as he grew up he realized that it was a difficult dream to live. Coming from a middle class  family  where  education  takes  precedence  and also  being  a    pass  out of prestigious  Ramakrishna  Mission,  Purulia,  one  of  the best  schools  in  West Bengal,  it  was  extremely  difficult for him to convince everyone that he wanted to leave  studies  and  make movies.

When asked why he chose to be an animation filmmaker, Pradipto reflected, “Animation is one of the most difficult yet satisfying form of filmmaking. It is an art form that can bring joy to people of every age, especially kids. It is also a  medium which can fulfill  the dreams of small town guys like us with limited resources to be a part of the  movie industry.  All you need is  creativity, passion and  perseverance  to  be  successful.”

Pradipto  currently  works  at  Dreamworks  Animation in LA, one of the finest animation studios in the world that made ‘Shrek,’ ‘Kung Fu Panda,’ ‘Madagascar’  and many others.

However, the journey to become an animator was not easy.  He started by borrowing money to study at Toonz Webel Academy in Kolkata and got his first job in a studio at  Pune,  where he worked on an Indian TV series ‘Little Krishna’.  He fondly remembers that when he started he had never  imagined  that  someday he would be part of Dreamworks Animation. His  only  regret  is  that  India, which  is  known  for  Bollywood  and its  movies across the world,  does not produce  many world class animation movies.

“The general awareness and media coverage about animation work is less, and unlike  the  rest  of  the  world,  animation  is  treated as  kids’  movies  in  India. I still have a hard time convincing  half  of  my family  that  I  make films for a living and I  have credit for working in  10 critically  and  commercially  acclaimed Hollywood movies”. 

The lack of awareness also meant that there were  not  enough parents to support   their  kids  to venture into  animation filmmaking  as  a career  in  India. Sudipto stated that during  the  global  COVID  pandemic when kids and adults were stuck  at  home and   there was a hunger for newer content especially since  traditional  film  shootings  had  been  stalled or delayed,  the  animation  movie  and TV industry thrived through  the  past  year .

Pradipto’s  most  recent  work  is  on Sony Picture Animation in  collaboration  with  Tencent  Pictures  and BseFX’s, ‘Wish Dragon’ which is currently available on Netflix  and trended No1 in US and Dreamworks Animation’s ‘Boss Baby: Family Business’ distributed by Universal  Pictures in  theatres  across  the  world and streaming  on Peacock,  in  which he has played a lead artiste’s  role.    With  his  story  of  journey  into  animation, Pradipto  wants  to  inspire  more  aspiring  artistes  to chase  their  dreams  of becoming  animators .

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