"Even with a 100-minute run time, The Good Dinosaur doesn't leave as much of an impact as Sanjay's Super Team, the six-minute, dialogue-free short that plays before the feature. Sanjay will go down as one of the (Pixar) studio's best, in league with classics like Presto, Partly Cloudy, and Day & Night."
That's heady praise that's gone the way of Sanjay Patel, Pixar animator and illustrator of Ramayana: Divine Loophole, who just made his directorial debut with his short animated film that appears in front of Pixar's feature animated film The Good Dinosaur that launched on Thanksgiving weekend.
For the first time in the studio's history, it has produced a short film inspired by true events. The synopsis given in wired.com of the film is:
It is " highlighting the contrast between little Sanjay's love of superhero cartoons and comics and his father's daily rituals of meditation and prayer. Drawing his own comics, Sanjay realizes that he can depict heroic Hindu deities of Vishnu, Durga (the Mother Goddess), and Hanuman (the Monkey God of strength and energy) the same ways as western superheroes. Daydreaming, he finds himself in a sprawling temple, where he sees the three deities facing off against a mythological Hindu demon, in a direct parallel to the cartoon show his father shut off at the beginning of the short. Snapping back to reality, he connects with his father; the short ends with shots of the two characters, alongside a present-day picture of Patel and his own dad."
Watch the short clip from Sanjay's Super Team on YouTube here:
anjay's Super Team is the first Pixar short directed by an Indian-American. It is also the 'most personal and autobiographical project put into theaters by the studio'. Apart from his work at Pixar, Sanjay Patel has created children's books featuring detailed, colourful and fascinating illustrations about Hindu mythology and culture, particularly the Ramayana.
John Lasseter, producer and Chief Creative Officer of Pixar, and producer Nicole Paradis Grindle insisted that it was time for Patel to take his work to the next level and thus it was that Patel committed to directing the Sanjay's Super Team. It took Patel three years of work to complete the filmmaking process, design the characters, and get the musical score done with composer Mychael Danna.
Wired.com quoted Patel as saying: "This has been therapy for me in terms of finally giving myself permission to feel included in this community, the studio, and its story." And there seems little doubt that Sanjay's Super Team will get a nomination for the Best Short Animated Film at the next Oscars.