At the event
UNIC New Delhi's collaboration with the 24FPS Awards organized by the Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics (MAAC), now in its fourth year, has always resulted in quirky, colourful films that help drive the message home, and this year was no different.
At the annual awards ceremony in Mumbai, where she gave away the Gold, Silver and Bronze awards for the best films on the UN theme ‘My World 2015’, UNIC Director Kiran Mehra-Kerpelman said the only difference this year was “the decibel level in the auditorium”, up by several notches as hundreds of participants cheered for the winners in this increasingly popular competition.
My World is a global survey for citizens led by the United Nations and partners to share their views on the post-2015 agenda with global leaders. “We felt that harnessing the creative energy of young people like you would be an excellent way of giving effect to these voices,” Ms. Mehra-Kerpelman told the more than 1,000 young animation students and experts from the animation film industry. “And that is why ‘My World 2015’ was chosen as the theme for MAAC students to work with, and express their own thoughts and feelings on the topic through the medium of film”.
In a special video message, Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar said he was pleased to learn about MAAC’s collaboration with UNIC which served to highlight issues of global importance with an eye to the ‘Future We Want’. It was a wonderful way to get young people in India to explore themes related to social justice and empowerment, he observed.
Ninad Karpe, CEO, Aptech, Ram Warrier, Business Head, MAAC, and Sanjiv Waerkar, Chief Creative Officer, thanked the United Nations for the collaboration, adding that MAAC was delighted to be able to to spotlight major global issues such as environmental conservation, HIV/AIDS, education for women and more. Under Project YoUNg@70, UNIC’s year-long campaign to mark the 70th anniversary of the UN, MAAC announced the first ever UNIC-24FPS International Animation Award 2014. MAAC students worked with various themes of My World 2015 as part of this campaign, using their talent to draw attention to critical global issues.
“We have an eminent jury which includes Shelley Page, head of International Outreach at Dreamworks, Jeff Markel, VFX Head, Rolling Dice Studio, R. Mani, General Secretary, Federation of Film Societies of India, Sanjot Sonalkar, Associate Vice President, Reliance Media Works, and many more,” said Mr. Warrier. “An award from this Academy on a student’s CV almost guarantees him or her a job in this industry”. He pointed out that the winning film in the main category had taken eight 8 months to make.
Ms. Mehra-Kerpelman also asked the participants and winners to be the UN’s partners in achieving global development goals. “The UN is ‘young’ at 70, we believe, because it still has a long journey ahead – and a lot of energy too! – as it attempts to fulfill and strengthen its key goals,” she said. “You, as young people, are partners in this process, and I do hope that participating in this competition and coming up with great ideas for a world beyond 2015 will only be the first step in your exploration of the world and its challenges”.
As the cheers rose to a crescendo, Ms. Mehra-Kerpelman said she hoped that the students would continue to use their skills and talents not only to fulfill their personal goals but also to help the United Nations spread its messages of peace, sustainable development and a world that guarantees human rights, justice and dignity for all.
UNIC hopes to work with MAAC during the 70th anniversary year to use animation as a medium for outreach and spread the messages of the UN to ever wider audiences.