“I always enjoy being the first one” — a fairly apt statement issued by Academy Award winning documentary filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, while discussing her soon to be released feature-length animated picture, 3 Bahadur.
The production which will be Pakistan’s first animated feature film is being created by Waadi Animations, and will be a joint venture between ARY Films and SOC Films. The team behind the animated movie hosted a press briefing at the Nueplex Cinemas on Tuesday to unveil the first look of the much-awaited flick.
Hosted by Fahad Mustafa, the event boasted several notable personalities from the industry, such as Humayun Saeed and Ahmed Ali Butt — all in attendance to express support for the new-fangled undertaking in Pakistani cinema.
The Na Maloom Afraad actor spoke of his own familiarity with film, saying it is imperative for the Pakistani audience, especially children, to have their own local characters and heroes to look up to.
“Growing up we never had any animated characters that were based in Pakistani surroundings and it is good to know that we would finally be having some new local heroes,” said the game show host who strongly believes it’s time to idolise icons that belong very much within the border.
The film, which is set to release in May 2015 is based in the fictional town of Roshan Basti (Town of Light). It revolves around three 11-year-old friends, Kamil, Amna and Saadi, who attempt to save their community from the many evils that plague it.
BTS videos for the movie illustrated the generous amounts of effort put into the movie and the tricky voice over process for the film. The movie includes the voices of distinguished actors, such as Alyy Khan and Behroze Sabzwari, alongside newcomer Bassam Shazli.
The soundtrack of the film has been composed by singer Shiraz Uppal and the ostensible track was being played in the backdrop during the red carpet event for the film.
Speaking at the event, Obaid-Chinoy commented, “The film is not about children but is a movement of the children.”
The filmmaker further added that given the tragic events of the gruesome Peshawar attack last week, it was essential that they ensured 3 Bahadur proves to be a thriving accomplishment. “We have to make 3 Bahadur a success not because it is a film but because it is a mindset and we have to strive to make it a success because it will define our coming generation’s frame of mind,” remarked Obaid-Chinoy.
Partners and sponsors of the movie also unveiled their marketing campaign and promotional strategy leading up to the release of the film. One of them was to launch a website which will contain detailed information about the enterprise and other downloadable content, such as BTS videos, photos and music.
Waadi Animations is also working on a 3 Bahadur gaming application for smartphones on multiple platforms like iOS, Android and Windows whereas other tie-in products such as children’s books and comic strips are also going to be launched.
Jerjees Seja, CEO of ARY Digital Network, wished to provide quality entertainment to children through the film. “A huge portion of our population is under the age of 15 and there has been very little film entertainment for them locally. We strongly believe that 3 Bahadur will definitely fill the gap and in the process create more marketing opportunities for brands that cater to our young population,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 25th, 2014.