Rakshak will hopefully inspire more comic book film adaptations in India
Recently, Yali Dream Creations’ Rakshak became the first superhero comic book series to be adapted for the big screen. Directed by famous filmmaker Sanjay Gupta, the film adaptation is produced by White Feather Films and co-produced by Yali Dream Creations CEO and graphic novel editor Asvin Srivatsangam, starring Vivek Rangachari. It was The passion of Srivatsangam which led to the founding of Yali Dream Creations and provided the wind in the wings for graphic novels like Rakshak to climb higher.
Srivatsangam dreamed of creating and sharing stories in one medium or another. He came from a family of high performing students. His paternal grandfather was a lawyer from Paramakudi, Tamil Nadu, India. His father, Dr. Srivatsangam, was a scientist, who received his doctorate from Fort Collins, Colorado, and worked for NASA. He maintains a relationship with legendary superstar and actor, Dr. Kamal Haasan, who happens to be his father’s first cousin. AnimationXpress had the pleasure of discussing with this creative spirit:
1. Tell us about yourself and your journey with Yali Dream Creations and its creation?
My early childhood was enriched by cartoons, then by Indian mythological stories. While years of corporate life suspended this possibility, he continued to weave stories until one day he decided to start his own comic book business. I have always loved storytelling and using visual aids such as graphic novels fascinated him even more.
I am based in San Jose, CA and work as a UI / UX designer in the tech industry. However, I’ve always wanted to do something with comics and storytelling. I started by creating two graphic novels, The Dynast and Neelakshi: Amrit’s Quest. The biggest problem for me was finding a publisher. This is where it occurred to me to start a publishing house. It was Yali Dream Creations, which I launched in August 2012. Our first graphic novel was Caravan, an original idea of ââthe writer Shamik Dasgupta. This one was released in June 2012 at Bangalore Comic-Con. Since then, we’ve released prequels for Caravan, Devi Chaudhurani, Rakshak Origin Series then The village. It’s a journey of over seven years now.
2. What is the meaning of the name Yali dream creations?
The name “Yali” is inspired by Hindu mythology. Untold Story of a Hindu Mythical Animal – Yali (à®¯à®¾à®³à®¿) The Hindu mythical animal or monster Yali can be found in Hindu temples as ancient art. It was widely used in the pillars of temples in southern India. Part of the Lion and the Elephant as body and head. These types of ancient mythical animals can be found in various parts of the world and religions. Yali Dream Creations is a comic book company focused on creating original stories to engage global audiences using comics and graphic novels. It brings original and imaginative stories with a mixture of horror and fantasy; mind-boggling science fiction and mythology. We encourage and enlighten the next generation to jump on the comic book storyline through our gripping stories and stunning artwork. Our team, from highly creative artists to exceptionally talented writers, has the same agenda: unveiling great stories.
3. How do you feel about it Rakshak will now be adapted as a feature film?
Delighted ! That is exactly what I feel ! Of course, this is just the start. And director Gupta is the right person to direct content like this. We, Yali Dream Creations, are absolutely thrilled.
After spending days, weeks, months creating a comic book series of over 350 pages in four issues and then talking to stakeholders and collaborators for so many days, this is a truly fulfilling time for me. . Initially, my writer, Shamik Dasgupta, titled this series Dansh. Although it is linked to the story, the name didn’t sound very appealing. We thought about several names after that. I found the name Rakshak, which is pan-Indian. After much debate, we thought this was the most appropriate and appealing name we could find for this vigilante story. So it is Rakshak.
4. As publisher and co-producer of Rakshak, where do you think graphic novels or Indian superheroes could be turned into movies? How do you find this market?
While DC and Marvel comics and their screen adaptations are heavily consumed in India not only in English but also in Indian languages, now is the right time for a native comic book character to appear in theaters. With a bit of luck, Rakshak will pave the way for a new start for Indian comics. And create a new trend in Indian cinema!
5. Tell us about ‘The Village’, which will become a series on a global OTT platform?
One of our other graphic novel properties, The village, was optioned on a global streaming platform. So-and-so, someone who worked with legendary director Mani Ratnam, is going to lead the project. It is going to be made in Tamil and production will start in August 2020.
6. What is your vision? What are the finances like?
Our vision is simple. We want to create good content in the form of comics, and in that form we have a visual storyline ready for filmmakers and studios to use. I think most of our income would be generated from screen adaptation. With today’s OTT platforms, a story doesn’t need to be told in just 150 minutes and have a theatrical release. In other words, we have a bigger market and reach than ever before. As for the income coming directly from the comics, it has been modest. I think this would continue to be the case for a while as the comic book readership is quite a niche in India and relatively new. We are also looking to license our properties to game companies as there is a huge market for mobile games. Also, we don’t want to limit ourselves and remain just a simple comic book company. To empower ourselves, we launched a production house that would make it easier for us to convert our comics into screen adaptation.
7. What are the current and future projects of Yali Dreams Creation?
We are working on suites for Caravan and Rakshak at present. We are also working on a great dark-fantasy Scions of the Cursed King. This was largely inspired by Game Of Thrones and The Mahabharata. We are also working on a mythological fantasy called Gandiva.