Ankur Kapoor is a student of Animation, Film Making and Visual Effects at Frameboxx Animation and Visual Effects and has been a passionate film maker ever since stepping into this industry as a student. He has won numerous national and international accolades and has most recently been awarded the Platinum Achiever's Award at the 1st Annual FrameFlixx Awards, Organized by Frameboxx Animation and Visual Effects. Here is an interview with this young achiever.
Q1. Tell us a little about yourself?
A. My name is Ankur Kapoor and I'm from Panchkula. After my initial schooling in 2003, I went on to pursue my engineering degree from Kurukshetra University and graduated in 2007. Ever since then I've been studying at Frameboxx Animation and Visual Effects where I'm pursuing a course in Visual Effects Specialization and Film Making.
Q2. What made you opt for a career in the Animation and Visual Effects industry?
A. I've always had a keen interest in animation films as a child. I remember one of my friends introducing me to an animation software back when I was in the 10th standard. This led to my interest in Blender, an open source animation software. But, I could not pursue animation as a full time career due to lack of adequate awareness and also the fact that it was considered more of a hobby rather than a profession back then. So, we kept on doing small time simple animation work work during our school and college days at home. After my college, I got a job as a Software Engineer, but I decided not to join. Instead, I joined a course at Frameboxx to pursue my passion. Luckily, my parents supported my decision.
Q3. Tell us a bit about your work?
A. In addition to studying Animation and Visual Effects at Frameboxx, I make short films. It was around July, 2007 that I read about a short films contest by Sony Pix that set the things in motion. I called up a couple of my friends and we shot our first film 're[green]' using my cell phone camera. Though the film did nothing at the contest, but there was a lot of encouragement as everyone liked our work. This gave me the drive to continue making films. Since then, I've made around 20 shorts of different genres including live-action, documentaries, animated shorts and PSA's. All these films can be viewed at www.movies.ankurkapoor.com
Q4. Your work has received numerous accolades and recognition. Tell us more.
A. Yes, I've been pretty fortunate as far as awards are concerned. I first tasted success when 'Voices of Reason', my 3rd short film, won at Filmaka India. This was a huge confidence booster. After this, six of my films won at Filmaka India, two of which were Jury Level wins where films were judged by eminent people from the industry including Anil Kapoor, Anupam Kher, Rahul Bose and Deepak Nayar.
One of the most memorable experiences was being selected as a finalist for 'Get Shorty' which was aired on Zee Studio in November 2008.
Other important awards included the 'Brand Choice Winner Award' for my entry for the Cisco Digital Cribs Contest by Filmaka and also the 1st Runner-up award for my first ever documentary, 'Goonj' at I am The Change Film Festival, 2008 in Mumbai.
Lately, the three animated films that I have completed at Frameboxx have got good recognition including a nomination at the FICCI BAF Awards 2009. I'm also excited at my recent win at the 1st Annual Frameflixx Awards where my animated film Child's Play won the 1st Runner Up Prize and my live action film 'Half the Truth'won the Best Live Action award
In all, most of my films have been either nominated or awarded at various film festivals and contests over the past 2 years. A summary of my films, nominations and awards is as follows:
1. re[green] (short film, 2007)
2. Chak le 100 (short film, 2007)
3. Voices of Reason (short film, 2007)
4. Ek Baar Dekh Lo (short film, 2007)
5. Hum Sab Bandar (short film, 2007)
6. Love's Lost Labour (short film, 2007)
7. God is Always Write (short film, 2007)
8. Nannu (short film, 2007)
9. Stuck in Time (short film, 2007)
10. Half the Truth (short film, 2007)
11. Edge (short film, 2008)
12. The Secret of Happiness (short film, 2008)
13. Time Time Ki Baat Hai (3D-animated short film, 2008)
14. Tomorrow 5.33PM (3D-animated short film, 2008)
15. The Long Wait (short film, 2008)
16. Goonj (short documentary, 2008)
17. Child's Play (3D-animated short film, 2008)
18. When on the road... (PSA, 2008)
19. Jasmit's Digital Crib (corporate short film, 2008)
20. Gandhi Fellowship (short documentary, 2008)
Q5. What made you join Frameboxx Animation | Visual Effects?
A. In the last couple of years of my college life, I did a lot of research visiting various animation schools. I was a bit confused at first, so I took a lot of opinions from old students, some industry professionals, and also interacted with the faculties. I soon found out that Frameboxx fit the bill and joined the course immediately.
Q6. How was the Frameboxx experience?
A. My experience at Frameboxx has been absolutely amazing so far. The kind of support I've had from the faculties has been top-notch. I can attribute the success of my animation films completely to the standard of skills I've acquired during my stay at Frameboxx, Also with the live-action stuff, there's enough help with frequent seminars and workshops they conduct on various facets of film making like acting, production pipeline, cinematography and lot more!
Q7. What is the single most important advice that you would give to aspirants who want to get in the Animation and VFX Industry?
A. Well, I would say that the best advice a CG artist can get is to preserve his creativity. Learning particular software is important to get out thoughts out onto the screen in the best possible fashion, but don't just get lost into the technicalities of the software! Keep innovating!
Q8. Where do you see yourself in the future? Is there a long-term career goal?
A. Since I love making films, I would like to make feature length films some day. And due to my bend towards animation and visual effects, I want to make something in India that beats the quality standards of Hollywood films. This medium of storytelling has not been exploited very well so far in our country and I would like to change that.
Q9. Do you have any role models whom you look up to or have done in the past?
A. I find inspiration in great motion pictures that invigorate my passion further to innovate new ideas and concepts for making good films.