ARE VFX the way forward for Bollywood? Experts say special effects will be needed to complete new films.

The hero can't marry the heroine in an elaborate wedding sequence, nor can he beat up 20 goons at once. And since these are the times of social distancing, the lead couple can't romance either.

The guidelines suggested by Maharashtra government to resume film shoots has made this clear. So, what's the way forward? VFX.

One might not have even realised that but in the past few years, this special effects technology has come in handy for almost every small or big film. TV or web show that Bollywood has made. And now, with ''new normal'' in place, it'll be used more heavily.

Producer Ananad Pandit, who has two films lined up, namely Chehre and The Big Bull, agrees and adds that the budgets allocated to VFX will shoot up in a post-Covid industry. ''Of course, the use is going to increase and absolutely going to help. But I feel it's a temporary phenomenon.

As soon as the vaccine comes up, or the intensity of the destruction of the virus goes down, we'll get into the normal mode. But for the next one year, VFX is going to be extremely important to complete films,'' he told Hindustan Times.

Trade analyst Joginder Tuteja concurred : ''VFX was anyway used in Films for crowd scenes. Now, all the more, because the fact is if there are 10 people standing in a frame, you can't have them in close proximity.

So, there'll be three or-four shots which will be merged together. Even for background dancers, VFX could come into the picture, as we've seen in  regional films.

The experts weigh in..............
Rohan Desai, Global Head of ReDefine, the company behind the VFX for upcoming films such as Brahamastra and '83, reveals that with the need to adhere to social distancing and maintaining minimal human contact, visual effects will come to the fore.

''For years, VFX companies have been of great help in keeping people safe. Some of the notable examples include the crowd being digitised. Doing so is practical in the current scenario as it eliminates the need for any additional costumes, make up and props, all of which involve human contact,'' he says.

Similarly, scenes like physical explosions that require safety protocols and extra crew, ''can now be shot separately'' in a more controlled environment, he added.

It all has to be in the story.............
Film-maker and choreographer Remo D' Souza, however, doesn't feel that VFX will be the way forward.

''I don't feel that we can shoot, say a wedding sequence, and create everything on VFX., or shoot a dance. You can't create dancers.

The way to shoot will be to shoot smartly and only the stuff which won't require VFX. It would have to be incorporated into the story itself. Makers would have to concentrate on the stuff which would not require a big crowd,'' the 46-year old said.

Pandit added : ''The budgets will increase but all directors and writers would have to make projects in such a way that we have minimum scenes.''

Explaining the economics, Tuteja cited an example. ''In a regular film, 5 - 10% of the budget is allocated to special effects.

For films such as 2.0, 50-70% of it is VFX. For a regular film, the budget will go up by 10%. It depends from film to film. For a biggie it would increase by another 15 - 20 % of the budget.

The World Students Society thanks News Desk / The Express Tribune.


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