How adversity brings us closer together

Insights from our Creative Director for VFX - Viral Thakkar


In the VFX and animation community, we are lucky to have wonderful and caring colleagues. When disaster strikes, everyone rallies around to help each other out and keep their spirits up. I have seen a lot of this over the past couple of weeks at ReDefine as our teams persevere through the current situation and have witnessed it during my 19 year career in the industry as well. I have faced an office fire, recessions and company bankruptcy which made me reach big lows but also showed me how important it is to care for those around you.

Some years ago, before my time at ReDefine, I was on a two month shoot across Europe when I got a devastating call from Mumbai. A major fire had taken place on one of the floors of the studio I was working at, due to a circuit that had been shot. It was terrible to hear this when I was away from the studio. You feel completely helpless and like you can’t really do much to support your colleagues from so far away. Thankfully no one was hurt, but our workstations were burnt and what was even worse was that we were in the middle of completing a big project which was due to release soon. When I returned from Europe, I found out that the owners had decided to shut down the company due to massive losses. At that point, I had only one option left – it was to not give up and to set up my own company. In only a couple of months, I was part of a fantastic company that had recruited 250 artists.

Around the same time as the office fire, the economy was going through a recession. They do say that trouble never comes alone. During this time, I realised even more how important it is to care deeply about those around you and that this helps you to get through your own troubles. For a whole year, I started taking pay cuts so that our artists on lower salaries could get paid too. It was a very harsh year but also a very important learning experience. It will stay with me forever as it helped me to create a great community through care and consideration.

As we go through the current situation with our teams at ReDefine, I remember all the lessons I have learnt during my career and ensure that I give my team all the encouragement and motivation they need to go through the difficult times. We are all in it together and we will come out stronger for it. Adversity shows us the importance of caring because without a sense of care, there can be no sense of community.

ReDefine is definitely a great place to be. I have enjoyed every single day here, the work is truly rewarding. The teams share a great bond and that’s what makes it a great place to work.

Shilpa Bhanushali Head of Production (Animation)

We have top-of-line professionals who are not only creative, but also fun to work with. It has created a lot of possibilities for reinventing workflows.

François Schneider Global Creative Supervisor, North America

The people who form ReDefine have come from varied experiences and all have the potential to develop and deliver world-class projects.

Viral Thakkar Creative Director and VFX Supervisor India