It was her first film. An animated one. It took her all of two-and-a-half years to make it. And when it was complete, around September, success was sure to follow. It did, in a flood. Within weeks Shilpa Ranade’s Goopi Gawaiyaa...Bagha Bajaiyaa drew attention, opening at the Canadian Film Festival, an Asian premiere at the Busan Festival, an Indian premiere and then one in Dubai. Next March, it is to screen at the New York Film Festival.
On Thursday, the 78-minute film opened at the 18 International Children’s Film Festival of India to seemingly endless applause.
“I am glad my first feature film has opened in such spectacular fashion. I used fun and adventure to tell the story in a manner that kids would like, complete with the morals,” says Ms. Ranade, who has several short films to her credit, including Mani’s dying… .
“Three years ago, I did about 50 illustrations for Gulzar saab ’s book on Satyajit Ray’s classic film Gopi Gayne Bagha Bayne from the 60s.It has everything a child would think of. And being an animator basically, I thought it was apt for my debut feature film. My belief that the story was surely something that is ‘very given’ for animation was not wrong,” Ms. Ranade told The Hindu .
After an M.Phil in animation from the Royal College of Art, London, she now teaches animation as an Associate Professor at the Industrial Design Centre, IIT Mumbai.
Interestingly, Shilpa says she is not new to Hyderabad, having spent two years of her life as a student of St. Ann’s, Secunderabad between 1976 and 1978.
Does she remember her childhood here?
“Oh, yes. I can’t forget my principal Marion Regis and my most lovable teacher Mrs. Murthy,” she signs off.