By Sneha Mahale
This Independence Day, a 45-minute 2D animation film on Mahatma Gandhi will be released in India. Titled My Dear Bapuji, the film details the life of Gandhi and has been made in association with the Mahatma Gandhi National Foundation.
Initially, the film was supposed to focus only on
Gandhi’s childhood. “But we saw some blogs criticising his views and principles. The authors were all below 25 and didn’t have a clue about the man or his principles. So we decided to re-form the plot and explain his principles to the younger generation,” says director AK Saiber.
GandhiMaking the movie
The film is in 2D format but the backgrounds of some scenes are designed in 3D. The animation medium was chosen to ensure that the film’s message reached its target audience. “We could create characters with better resemblance to the real-life characters. Animation allows better understanding and generates interest.”
The film took 15 months to complete. Around 2,000 photographs related to Gandhiji’s life, his autobiography, other books referring to Bapuji, documentaries and feature films were referred to in a bid to maintain accuracy. Says Saiber, “We can’t explain everything about Gandhiji in 45 minutes. But if this film could change the viewpoint of some youngsters, it will be our reward.”
The makers are also hoping to clear misunderstandings regarding Gandhi’s involvement in the partition. My Dear Bapuji will release in Kerala on the big screen today and will also be available on YouTube for viewers in Mumbai and across India. The film, releasing in Malyalam, Hindi and English, will later be dubbed in other Indian languages as well. Next up is a similar project on Subhash Chandra Bose.
Saiber says, “Every Gandhian principle has significance. His life highlights honesty, simplicity, integrity, and his compassion towards people across boundaries. And these principles can be applied in today’s world too.”
This is a story of three kids who meet a genie. Unlike the other genies who grant material wishes, this genie shares knowledge. The children ask the genie about Mahatma Gandhi and he tells them Gandhiji’s story by highlighting important incidents in his life.