Biren Ghose’s joie de vivre is infectious. One may have met him before but that does not mean meeting him a second time is any less exciting. Last time around, he was still feeling his way around Technicolor, but now after four years at the helm he has converted himself into an industry spokesperson.
So what has changed? “Happily, many things have remained same. And you don’t want the basics to change,” he says, settling down into the conversation.
Technicolor has matured and has become a tighter team, he says, with a chuckle.
The animation game in India has been changing quickly with the level of detailing that goes into it having increased tremendously, with the specifications getting better all the time. “Imperfections, if any, stand out more these days. The kind of detailing that goes into creating any one character is high,” says Biren, looking very relaxed in his blue sweat-shirt and jeans.
Biren has been instrumental in establishing India as the primary hub for Technicolor’s foray into the CG animation business, besides developing India as a centre excelling in VFX. He has also played a key role in managing alliances including the one with DreamWorks Animation. Technicolor was the firm behind animation features like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle and Kungfu Panda. “We are now working outside of DreamWorks and still doing international movies. This is a major step as the quality and talent required to make large movies are huge. Early sciences were inspired by the arts and today we have come a full circle, where animation in the form of technology/science is completing art,” Biren says, giving the kind of quote that he seems to specialise in.
Hiring top quality talent remains a priority and a challenge. “We are getting different skill sets and are hiring people not only from art colleges but from the IITs. A lot of the talent in the high end though has to be still managed from overseas, because we are in a vicious circle where we need both artists and engineers,” says Biren.
Data security and process security are two of the aspects that are crucial to the industry and Biren has a close watch on them. “A movie or TV serial which is in development maybe for a year or more should not go (spill) out; that will be the deal breaker. It is important we have data security, process security etc. But