Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Nomination for Best Animated Ad Film (International) at the FICCI Best Animated Frames awards 2014

As a startup success always seems fleeting and elusive, but when it does arrive it is a rather calming and reassuring experience. It is simply an acknowledgement of the risk and effort involved and often serves as an encouraging reminder that bigger, better things await. At Last-Bench, despite our infancy, we've had many such moments and none bigger than getting nominated for a prestigious award - Best Animated Ad Film (International) at the FICCI BAF awards.

The FICCI Frames is a three day global convention covering the entire gamut of Media & Entertainment like Films, Broadcast (TV & Radio), Digital Entertainment, Animation, Gaming, Visual Effects, etc. with nearly 2000 Indian and 800 foreign delegates encompassing the entire universe of media and entertainment attending the event in 2014. It is also Asia’s largest global convention on the business of media and entertainment. The highlight of the conference is the Best Animated Frames (BAF) awards that celebrate excellence in the digital entertainment and animation industry over the last year.

Last-Bench representatives at the FICCI BAF's
What's makes this recognition extra special is to see something we built from scratch, enthused with all our hard work, get recognized on an international stage. It's almost like a David vs Goliath story, where we were pitched against some industry heavyweights like Prime Focus, Cartoon Network, Hungama, Disney, Nickelodeon and still managed to get recognized. Of course winning the award would have sent us to cloud nine but getting nominated itself was far beyond our imagination.

Our entry was our in-house sales video for our content design services. Prior to development, our goal was simple: create video that would convince every viewer that they needed a video made by us. For that we'd have to truly create something special. And we did. In retrospect, we did accomplish our goal but it would be a lie to say we were supremely confident about getting there. It is through sheer effort, dedication and creative brilliance of the entire team that we even came close to achieving something this big.

Our Content Design Services video

What made the development process even more challenging were the many hurdles that we had to face as we lacked the size or muscle power of a bigger production house. Remember, when we developed the video we were a team of 5 and it would be impossible to dedicate people to the making of this video without negatively affecting other aspects of the business. The big question was: Can you develop a high quality video, inclusive of ideation, scripting, storyboard, animation, editing, etc., with a virtually zero budget, within a month and without a dedicated team? What turned the odds in our favor was the abundance of skill and creativity within the team. Discounting timelines and budgetary constraints we not even for a moment ever doubted if we could build something this special. We knew we could create something spectacular but the real challenge was developing a 3 min animated video with a minuscule budget and within a month! Suddenly we felt like we were our own clients! And like every other client of ours, didn't we end up satisfied :D

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