GALLERY: Barangay Ginebra back as PBA Governors’ Cup kings LATEST STORIES FILE – In this Feb. 17, 2018, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers’ Larry Nance Jr. competes in the slam dunk contest, part of the NBA basketball All-Star weekend in Los Angeles. Nance has run into an unexpected snag since joining the Cavaliers. “Trying to convince my mom that I’m not living at home,” he said, smiling. “We’re out looking for rental properties and stuff like that and she’s like, ‘Oh, our basement is pretty nice.’ That’s probably been the toughest thing.” Nance wore his dad’s Phoenix jersey and replicated the same dunk Larry Nance Sr. did while winning the inaugural dunk contest in 1984. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File)CLEVELAND — Larry Nance Jr. will wear his father’s retired No. 22 with the Cavaliers.The forward announced Thursday night that the NBA has worked it out so he can switch from No. 24 to his dad’s No. 22 starting next week. Nance Jr. was recently acquired by Cleveland in a trade with the Los Angeles Lakers.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew UK plans Brexit celebrations but warns businesses may suffer Phivolcs records 2 ‘discrete weak ash explosions’ at Taal Volcano Nance Jr. said he’s thrilled to have the chance to honor his father, who spent eight seasons with the Cavs. A team spokesman said the league understood the special circumstances surrounding the number and its significance to the Nance family and agreed the change should take place.Larry Nance Sr.’s jersey was retired by the Cavs in 1995.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkThe younger Nance wore his father’s No. 22 Phoenix jersey last weekend when he participated in the dunk contest at the All-Star Game. Nance Jr. joked that he also plans to wear tight shorts and high white socks the rest of this season. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Nueva Ecija warehouse making fake cigarettes raided, 29 Chinese workers nabbed Sea turtle trapped in net freed in Legazpi City Downed under Phivolcs records 2 ‘discrete weak ash explosions’ at Taal Volcano MOST READ Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments
…as it deported 82 nationals, inclusive of asylum seekers The United Nations system in Trinidad and Tobago on Sunday registered its concerns with the decision of the island’s Government to facilitate the return of 82 Venezuelan nationals, including asylum seekers, who had been in detention back to their homeland.“The United Nations is concerned for the welfare of these people and is in contact with the appropriate authorities in Port of Spain to ensure that any person in need of protection will get it without fail,” the T&T UN Resident Coordinator Richard Blewitt said on Sunday.Blewitt’s comments came after the island’s Ministry of National Security announced that 82 Venezuelan citizens who had been held in detention in Trinidad and Tobago had been turned over to the Venezuelan Embassy for repatriation to Venezuela.“The group, comprised of 53 men and 29 women, included several individuals who had been registered as asylum seekers in Trinidad and Tobago as well as others who had initiated asylum requests or had signalled an intention to do so. They were flown out of Trinidad and Tobago on Saturday aboard a Venezuelan Government aircraft. The Ministry statement said all returns were voluntary although this could not be verified independently by United Nations observers,” the UN said in a statement.“Venezuelans have been leaving their country in growing numbers, many in need of international protection and seeking temporary refuge in countries of the Americas region, including in some Caribbean small island States like Trinidad and Tobago. The United Nations and its local partners have encouraged the prompt adoption of national legislation on refugee issues, and work together to support the Government of Trinidad and Tobago in its efforts to develop an efficient and secure asylum system,” the statement added.T&T National Security Minister Edmund Dillon said the arrangement was finalised on Friday between the two Governments. The military aircraft, flight number FAV2410, landed at the Piarco International Airport South Terminal at 10:51h from El Libertador Air Base Airport in Palo Negra, Venezuela on Saturday.The Trinidad Guardian reported that just under 40 of those 82 Venezuelan nationals were said to have applied for asylum and refugee status in T&T, but the certificates they had in their possession were allegedly disregarded by immigration officers in T&T.Over the last two weeks, members of the T&T Police Service as well as immigration officers made several raids in the southern part of the island where they detained a number of Venezuelan nationals who were in the country illegally.It was reported that approximately 2000 Venezuelans have applied for asylum in T&T and the numbers are increasing. Venezuelans have been seeking refuge in T&T as a result of their country’s current situation.The Trinidad Guardian reports that on a weekly basis between 150 and 200 Venezuelans come to T&T via the sea, but noted that based on the numbers seen at the Immigration Detention Centre, the majority of them—at least 90 per cent – have entered the country illegally or have a criminal conviction.
160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! But the Dons continued to fight back and get shots. They pulled within one on a goal by Alex Rodriguez, who was at the right place at the right time as he directed a pass that deflected off a couple of players and into the net. The Dons, down by one, had a chance to tie the game, but Marshall goalie Eric Alvarenga stepped up and made a big save. The Dons had a player break into the penalty area and he tried to go around Alvarenga, who dove and stopped him from getting by. Near the end of the second half, Marshall had a chance to put the game away, but a great defensive play stopped the threat. Marshall got the ball behind the defense and the goalie came out to make the play. But a Marshall player went around him and took a shot into what appeared to be an empty net. A Dons defender seemingly came from out of nowhere to make the save. “It took pure guts,” Marshall High School Marshall coach Claine Plummer said. “We fought for every ball, and sacrificed our bodies.” Sierra Vista carried the play for most of the second half and Salvador Aguilera scored to make it 2-1. After a Sierra Vista foul, the Eagles were awarded a free kick. Omar Siodia took it and scored. LA PUENTE – held off a second-half rally by Sierra Vista en route to a 3-2 victory on Wednesday and advanced to the quarterfinals of the CIF-Southern Section Division V boys soccer playoffs. Marshall got two first-half goals from Cesar Barajas to take a 2-0 lead.
THIS is the face of evil Jonathon Ayton – the thug behind a crimewave across Donegal and Derry.And it’s the face of a man who on one of his robbery sprees stole a car belonging to a disabled man…and then burned it out in Donegal.Ayton, 36, is from Raphoe but gave an address at Bond’s Hill in Derry. He pleaded guilty at Derry Magistrates Court to six charges involving burglary, four of them on the Donegal side of the Border. But he is no stranger to theft.Donegaldaily.com can reveal the one-man crimewave has an astonishing 63 previous convictions for crimes dating back t0 1990.He was involved in a number of thefts in east Donegal over a 20 year period; stealing cars and cash during burglaries.On one occasion the victim’s car was never found. People in Raphoe say he terrorised the town and surrounding area including Convoy for years.“He is a total scumbag,” said one man who knows him well. “If you shook hands with him, you had to count your fingers afterwards.”A northern judge described Ayton’s crimes as “callous” and jailed him for two and half years.Keep this picture handy. With remission, he’ll be back on the streets in time for next Christmas.FACE OF EVIL…THE THUG WHO STOLE DISABLED MAN’S CAR FOR DONEGAL ROBBERIES was last modified: November 16th, 2011 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:courtsdonegal burglarJonathon Ayton – the thug behind a crimewave across Donegal and Derry.
Part of McSwyne’s stunning walk at Horn Head. Pic courtesy of www.walkinghikingireland.comThe future of one of Donegal’s most famous coastal walkways is under threat after a local landowner pulled out of an agreement to allow people to use it.The internationally renowned McSwyne’s Gun Loop Walk over Horn Head in Dunfanaghy brings tourists form across Europe to walk its 10km route.But its future has been thrown into doubt this week as difficulties with access for the public have emerged. It had been hoped to have it extended in the future as its popularity grew.The promoters of this highly popular walking trail said they are reluctant to go into the details of the problem that has now arisen.However they have confirmed to the Tirconail Tribune that a ‘specific difficulty’ has arisen and if not fully resolved very soon, they will be forced to abandon the trail since an issue of access has created a major obstacle.The local community in Dunfanaghy and Horn Head who raised the issue are reluctant to be more specific about the nature of the access problem. But they did confirm that not all land owners had signed up to the five year lease arrangement.The walk is seen as an important tourism asset and according to the community it attracts a huge number of visitors and many continental tourists are attracted through international publicity of the site.McSwyne’s trail is described as a moderate walk and can take around two and a half hours to complete.The Loop Walk traverses open headland with deep cliffs, gullies and large blowholes along the trail.Walkers assemble at the Haggard Bridge just beyond the GAA grounds. The peninsula forms part of Sheephaven Bay and has many remains of Neolithic stone circles, court tombs and passage tombs and prehistoric field boundaries.Horn Head cliffs rise straight out of the water to a height of almost six hundred feet on the ocean side of the peninsula.They are an internationally important colony for breeding seabirds and designated a Special Area of Conservation. McSwyne’s Gun is a blowhole on the West side of the peninsula.During storms, water gets forced through it to a height of 200-300 feet, with a noise that can be heard ten miles away. These are the attributes that makes the walk a compelling journey, says the local community who now fear that it may have to be abandoned unless a solution to the access problem is found.FAMOUS DONEGAL WALK UNDER THREAT AFTER ACCESS BLOCKED was last modified: July 11th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Horn HeadlandownerMcSwyne’s Gun Loop
MO GHRÁ GAEL 2 WILL BE COMING FROM DONEGAL TOMORROW NIGHT TUESDAY FEBRUARY 28thSa tsraith úr chleamhnais seo, leantar beirt ógánach singil ar turas rómánsúil agus iad ag cuardach a nGrá GaelIs doiligh grá a aimsiú,agus ní ar leac do dorais a bhíonn sé i gcónaí! Tá Síle Ní Scanláin agus Ainle Ó Cairealláin beirt singil, agus tá siad ar lorg grá. Thug siad faoi smacht a chur ar a gcinniúint féin agus d’iarr siad ar dhaoine eile atá singil agus atá ar chomh-intinn leo físeáin fúthu féin a chur isteach chuig an suíomh idirlín Mo Ghrá Gael. I ndiaidh dóibh daoine a roghnú, bhuail siad an bóthar agus chuaigh siad timpeall na tíre ar turas rómánsúil. Ach caithfidh gur duine an-speisialta é don bheirt acu – tá dúil as cuimse ag Síle agus Ainle i gcúrsaí Gaelacha, agus tá liosta fada de thréithe acu le fáil sna daoine a théann i bhfeidhm orthu.Cuirtear tús lena dturas i mBaile Átha Cliath, agus ar aghaidh leo go Corcaigh, Gaillimh, Dún na nGall, agus Béal Feirste. Nuair a stopann siad i ngach áit, buaileann siad le scaifte daoine difriúil atá ag iarraidh dul i gcion orthu leis an dara coinne a bhaint. Cad é mar a éireoidh le Síle agus le hAinle? An féidir splanc an ghrá a mhothú ar an chéad choinne?Sa séú clár, clár deireanach na sraithe, tá ar Shíle agus ar Ainle duine den chúigear óna coinní roimhe a roghnú le haghaidh deireadh seachtaine rómánsúil i mBúdaipeist. Is é sin, cor cinniúna an ghrá!Craolfar an tsraith Dé Máirt ag 10.00 i.n., ag tosú ar 7ú Feabhra ar TG4 agus is féidir an bheirt a leanúint ag moghragael2.com A new entertaining dating series following two singletons on a romantic odyssey in search of their Grá Gael…Finding love can prove difficult……and it’s not always on your doorstep.Singletons Síle Ní Scanláin and Ainle Ó Cairealláin are looking for love. They’ve decided to take destiny into their own hands and have appealed for other like-minded singletons to upload videos about themselves to their Mo Ghrá Gael website. Having selected some potential dates the duo go on a road trip around Ireland to see if they can find true love. But not just anyone will do. Both are passionate about all things Gaelach and they have a long list of requirements for anyone hoping to win their hearts.Their journey begins in Dublin and onto Cork, Galway, Donegal and Belfast. In each location they meet a bunch of other singletons looking for a significant other and chose someone to go on a proper ‘first date’ with. Will their dates do enough to impress Síle and Ainle? Can love be found in one day?In the sixth and final show Síle and Ainle have to select someone from their road trip to take on a 2nd date for a romantic break in Budapest. This is make-or-break time for love! The series will be aired on TG4 on Tuesday nights from the 7th February at 10.00pm and you can follow their journey online at moghragael2.comMO GHRÁ GAEL 2 WILL BE COMING FROM DONEGAL THIS WEEK was last modified: February 27th, 2012 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:MO GHRÁ GAEL 2 WILL BE COMING FROM DONEGAL THIS WEEK
SENIOR Gardai have hit out at a policy which sees half the annual transport budget of the force spent on repairs – as it emerged one car which collided with a donkey in Donegal cost €4k to fix….more than the car was worth.The Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors has called for a cost-benefit analysis to be carried out on the Garda Transport Fleet.Delegates at the association’s conference in Wexford say half of the annual budget of €24.5m is spent on repairs. The AGSI said money is being wasted on a fleet of cars, vans and bikes that is ageing and deteriorating and they cannot be expected to provide a service with poor quality vehicles.Sgt Paul Wallace from Donegal said that a vehicle that had been in service almost six years in Co Donegal had recently been involved in an accident with a donkey, and was being repaired at a cost of €4,000.The accident happened in Gaoth Dobhair.This cost was higher than the value of the vehicle, which would soon pass 300,000km and would need to be taken out of service. “From a cost-benefit analysis viewpoint it does not make economic sense to spend exorbitant sums of money on major repairs for old vehicles.”Sgt Wallace said that because the Gardai owned rather than leased its fleet, when a vehicle was damaged beyond repair it was taken out of duty and no replacement was supplied in the current economic climate.He said the Garda fleet was ageing quickly and this issue had to be addressed immediately if gardaí were to retain the standard of transport they needed to meet their obligations. GARDA CAR COLLISION WITH DONKEY: REPAIR BILL COST MORE THAN CAR WAS WORTH was last modified: April 5th, 2012 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:GARDA CAR COLLISION WITH DONKEY: REPAIR BILL COST MORE THAN CAR WAS WORTH
(CLICK HERE, if you are unable to view this photo gallery on your mobile device.)SAN JOSE — Charlie McAvoy scored with 1:03 remaining in overtime, spoiling Joe Thornton’s revenge hat trick against the team that traded him to San Jose 13 years ago.McAvoy clinched a 6-5 win for the Boston Bruins at SAP Center on Monday after his teammate Chris Wagner tied the game at 18:11 of the third in controversial fashion, letting the air out of Thornton’s big night.Thornton refused to hide his emotions …
Hollywood film stars Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have been shooting in the western India city of Pune for A Mighty Heart, the story of the Al Qaeda kidnapping of Wall Street Journal journalist Danny Pearl. A flotilla of Indian service providers, from film technicians to security guards, has been supporting them.Jolie and Pitt represent just the visible tip of the iceberg. As Hollywood increasingly turns to India to provide some of its needs, business process outsourcing (BPO) is making its way to the top of the credit lines. “The scope is enormous in virtually every area,” according to Pritish Nandy, founder-chairman of Pritish Nandy Communications, a content company in the news and entertainment business. “Currently, Hollywood appears to be looking at three areas: post production, animation and local production support. But these are nothing compared to the real opportunity areas.” Hollywood actor Will Smith talks on the sets of television show “Indian Idol” in Bombay. Smith is in India aiming to build a partnership with filmmakers in the world’s most prolific movie industry. (AP Photo/Rajesh Nirgude)Before getting into how BPO is transforming animation, consider the other two areas of activity: local production support and post production. The first lies in the gamut of “red carpet” services being rolled out for Jolie and Pitt. Even as the duo was keeping Pune on its toes – everyone wanted to see the action, and the international paparazzi had descended in full force – neighboring Mumbai was hosting an International Fair on Film Locales (IFFL). The fair saw other countries showcasing their attractions as locales for shooting films, but most of the participants were from India – state tourism boards, facility providers, film councils and other affiliated service providers.Land of the GodsTouting their scenic charms and rustic settings, some locations have begun tapping this opportunity in an organized fashion. “God’s Own Country,” the banner under which southern state of Kerala is marketed to tourists, is being sold to film producers as a place that delivers “more beauty per frame, more art per shot, more plots per story, more images per set, and more locales per schedule.” The neighboring state of Andhra Pradesh has gone even further. Ramoji Film City in Hyderabad has been involved in several Hollywood productions and offers a whole range of facilities. “It is one of the largest, most comprehensive and advanced film production facilities in the world,” says a spokesperson. Shooting is currently going on for one film (the company says it can’t talk about it) and more than half-a-dozen have been completed.Ramoji Film City offers all sorts of elaborate sets. If a director wants an airport or a medieval castle, she can have it. Also on tap are production crews, grid equipment, cameras and anything else a filmmaker might require. Post-production facilities include processing, printing, and digital and audio editing. “In terms of live-action feature film production, India is on its way to becoming a serious player in the economic ‘runaway production’ phenomenon,” says Dileep Singh Rathore, producer and founder of the Mumbai-based On The Road Productions and the Los Angeles-based Kundalini Pictures. (“Runaway productions,” as defined by the US Screen Actors Guild and the Directors Guild of America, “are developed and are intended for initial release/exhibition or television broadcast in the U.S. but are actually filmed in another country.”) OctopussyRathore, whose company handles the physical production and acts as co-producer for international projects shooting in South Asia, says the Indian film business has come a long way since gaining industry status in August 2000. “Many countries are competing to attract runaway productions,” he says. “But India provides up to 60% cost savings on below-the-line expenses such as crew, materials and logistics. In addition, due to its robust domestic film industry – producing more than 1,000 films each year – the availability of highly skilled technicians, equipment and facilities has put India in an advantageous position.”Chaitanya Chinchlikar, marketing manager at Whistling Woods International, a new institute for film, television, animation and media arts that set up in Mumbai barely a year ago, echoes the same line. “Hollywood has long chased low-cost ways to produce content,” he says. India will gain “in the coming years, as the economy becomes more and more global and competition forces media content producers to get even more aggressive in conserving costs.” But, he adds a caveat: “The market for BPO services from Bollywood to Hollywood is relatively small at the moment.”Whistling Woods hopes to bring professionalism to the Indian film industry. “The institute will be a catalyst in bringing people to India as it offers an opportunity to interact and educate, which many Hollywood professionals are interested in,” says Chinchlikar. “Once they are here, they can see the possibilities for themselves.” Incidentally, the dean of Whistling Woods – Kurt Inderbitzin – is a filmmaker-producer and media business professional from Hollywood.Among films wholly or partially shot in India are The Bourne Supremacy (2004), In the Shadow of the Cobra (2004), Jungle Book(1994), City of Joy (1992), Octopussy (1983), Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977), Tarzan Goes to India (1962) and The Drum (1938). Says Rathore: “Approximately 80 productions from Hollywood have shot in India since the 1940s. In the past five years since the industry hreforms, the number has grown exponentially. On an average, according to the union ministry of information and broadcasting, 15 feature productions are shot in India each year.”The Animation ArmyIndia is becoming more prominent on the Hollywood locale list. But much of the current action is in animation. “India, with its wide base and intellectual property in the field of animation, offers key advantages to the global animation market,” says a report produced by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) and PricewaterhouseCoopers. “With technical expertise, highly-skilled manpower and international collaborations, the industry is going from strength to strength….“Animation outsourcing is the primary work coming India’s way and this trend is expected to continue over the next five years. During this period, a large chunk of the work will be of this nature, even though the industry has begun to move towards the next level in the animation outsourcing business as certain co-production assignments have started coming to India.”Animation companies are sprouting up all over India. These include UTV Toons in Mumbai, Moving Picture Company in Noida (near Delhi), Pentamedia Graphics in Chennai, Jadoo Works in Bangalore, Color Chips India in Hyderabad, and Toonz Animation India in Trivandrum (in Kerala).The Mumbai-based Crest Animation Studios has several successes to its credit, though they are more in the TV arena. Its recent series Jakers! The Adventures of Piggley Winks has received an Annie nomination for the best animation television production for children. Crest’s U.S. subsidiary – RichCrest Animation – has teamed up with independent producer and distributor Lions Gate to create three state-of-the-art animated feature films for Hollywood. This includes one based on William Steig’s classic children’s book, Sylvester and the Magic Pebble.The Hyderabad-based DQ Entertainment bills itself as the largest animation outsourcing company. “We are now co-producing several TV series,” says a spokesperson. The Mumbai-based Maya Entertainment has also been doing award-winning work in animation and special effects. From Chennai, Pentamedia Graphics has so far released four full-length animated movies, including Sinbad: Beyond the Veil of Mists and Alibaba.“Companies in Bangalore, Hyderabad and Mumbai have all been part of VFX (visual effects) and animation shots for major Hollywood productions like Spiderman 3, Cars, and Lord of the Rings,” says Chinchlikar. For example, the Bangalore (Karnataka)-based Paprikaas Animation Studios is working on 3D-animated TV series, game cinematics and broadcast commercials. “In the pipeline are direct-to-video and full-length feature films with Tier I studios in Hollywood,” says Paprikaas CEO Nandish Domlur. “Unfortunately, as these are unreleased titles, we are bound by non-disclosure agreements not to talk about them.”Toonz Animation is another rising star, with a client list that includes the biggest names in media and entertainment: Marvel, Hallmark, Paramount, Disney, and Cartoon Network. Animation Magazine has written up the company as one of the Top 10 multimedia studios in the world. Its pre-production services include script writing, storyboarding, character designing, color model creation, conceptual artwork, key layouts, key animation and key background. “We are working for television shows and direct-to-DVD feature films for Hollywood entertainment majors,” says CEO P. Jayakumar. “Around 500 people work at our studios, including top professionals from the US, the UK, Canada, the Philippines and India.”In Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh), Color Chips, an animation studio and integrated design solutions company, “is doing a lot of co-productions with Hollywood studios in the animation space,” says chairman and managing director Sudhish S. Rambhotla. Incidentally, Color Chips also runs an animation training center. Some firms have chosen even narrower niches. The Prasad Group in Chennai is into VFX (visual effects) and Digital Film Restoration projects. “We have already completed a number of such projects,” says Mohan Krishnan, head of corporate communications. “We have a production-cum-sales facility in Hollywood and are discussing more projects with Hollywood studios and filmmakers.” The Indian VFX market is expected to go up to $95 million by 2009 from $15 million today.The large Indian IT firms also have a toe in this pond. Nipuna, the BPO subsidiary of Satyam Computers, has signed a deal with the German 4K Animation. The duo will work on animation projects for a Hollywood film – an international action, adventure and fantasy motion picture directed by Paul Nicholas. Infosys has partnered with Hollywood studios to develop customized content. TCS has set up a media and entertainment lab in Burbank, Calif.But these companies seem more interested in back-office work such as writing the software to restrict unauthorized online video and music downloads, and making DVDs piracy proof. They are applying their core competencies to a new vertical and waiting to see whether it is worth extending their skill sets. This is, after all, a very different business.The India Advantage“At present, animation is the biggest player when it comes to outsourcing Hollywood to India,” says Rathore. “India’s cutting-edge IT skills, the large pool of highly-educated English speakers and lower manpower costs are the main reasons for outsourcing. A typical half-hour 3D animation TV episode costs between $70,000 and $100,000 to produce in India, compared to $170,000 to $250,000 in America. U.S. animators can cost $125 an hour; in India, they cost $25 an hour. India offers animation at 25% to 40% lower rates than other Asian studios and much lower than those of American studios. The total cost of making a full-length animated film in the U.S. is estimated to be $100 million to $175 million. In India, it can be made for $15 million to $25 million.”The latest National Association of Software & Service Companies (NASSCOM) report on the animation industry in India estimates that from the developers’ perspective the global market will increase to $35 billion by 2009 from $25 billion in 2005. India’s share will be $950 million; in 2005 it was $285 million. “Apart from the obvious cost arbitrage, the other advantages are high quality work, ability to scale, robust IT infrastructure, which is key to computer graphics content production, a large English-speaking base relative to other countries, and the advantage of a 12-hour time difference which helps to keep work going 24/7,” says Domlur of Paprikaas. Jayakumar of Toonz notes, “Our familiarity with the Western style of storytelling is also a big advantage.”“It’s hard to find a logical competitor to India, because India has a unique combination of three characteristics,” says Chinchlikar of Whistling Woods. There is a huge English-speaking population, there is a vast labor market and the people are technologically up-to-date. “China fits the second and third points,” adds Chinchlikar. “But language is a major barrier. And virtually all other developing countries fall short in at least one of the above areas. So, India is going to be the place to be in.”Back to the Future“The potential for Indian companies is high, as the work outsourced is less than 1% as of today,” says Rambhotla of Color Chips. Nandy of Pritish Nandy Communications has a more holistic vision. There is so much India can do, he says. “Pre-production, for instance,” says Nandy. “Writing. We Indians write the English language far better and infinitely more creatively than most people in the world, including the English-speaking world. And the interesting thing is that our best filmmakers — from Satyajit Ray and Raj Kapoor to Shekhar Kapoor and Ram Gopal Varma — have always written their screenplays in English and then filled in the dialogue in the language they have used for the film. Hollywood and the English-speaking world are too arrogant to notice this talent. But the compulsions of cost and original treatment will drive them in this direction eventually.”Ravi Aron, a senior fellow at Wharton’s Mack Center for Technological Innovation, has a different view. “It is not the quality or creativity of Indian writing that is in doubt. It is the cultural context in which such writing is set,” he says. “Can Indian writers create characters and dialogue, and recreate the cultural experience of North America for American and European audiences? Writing is not a fungible skill that can be deployed independently of cultural context. Indian scriptwriters will not find it easy to write the script for a film set in New York about New Yorkers any more than Americans will find it easy to write about Mumbaikars (residents of Mumbai).”While Nandy claims that India will outstrip Hollywood’s theater revenues in six years, Aron says that’s wishful thinking. He puts the numbers in perspective. “In 2005, Hollywood grossed about $35 billion from 300 films,” he says. “The Indian film industry made about 1,000 films and grossed a little more than $1.5 billion. It is not the ticket revenues that count as much as the unit price of the ticket. Hollywood’s higher revenue is because it sells in the U.S., Canada, the E.U. and Japan. It dominates all the big film-consuming markets in the world except for India. In 2005, the average revenue of a Hollywood film was about 75 times that of an Indian film. For the Indian film industry to challenge Hollywood it will have to sell tickets in volumes in these countries. The odd Indian film does reasonably well in these market segments. But that is just that — the odd Indian film.”Understandably, it is not as though all the fruits of Hollywood are waiting to fall into India’s lap. Domlur of Paprikaas points to a major problem. “There is a dearth of trained and production-ready artists,” he says. “In-house training is mandatory for all production houses who hire students from mom-and-pop training shops.” But he adds that some good training institutes are coming up. Jayakumar of Toonz says that radically improving output quality and productivity will be a major challenge in the coming years.“We need to see further investment in facilities and equipment,” says Rathore. “If a studio is going to pump $50-100 million into a project in a country, then you to want to ensure that the government is cooperating and inviting them with open arms. Otherwise they’ll go elsewhere, where they are welcome.”The role of the government is a common grouse; everyone complains about lack of support. There are no tax breaks and incentives. In countries like South Korea, China, Canada and France, the industry has been fostered by the governments.Aron points to a much broader issue. The Indian film industry can’t be everything to everyone. “It is important to ask the question -what drives firms to offshore production centers?” says Aron. “Not just movie production houses but any business –why does a business start producing offshore?” He provides the answer: “In most industries – spanning heavy manufacturing through electronics, apparel and banking services – offshore production is rarely the first option. It is a firm’s response to one or both of the following factors:• Competition in its principal markets resulting in erosion of revenues;• Rapid changes in the industry: in production, distribution and pricing of production and services.“There is another reason why companies produce offshore. In fact, until the mid-1960s, this was the principal reason for U.S. multinationals to take this route. The corporation wants to extend its business imprint in a region. To do so, it locates some production in that region partly to produce content to local tastes and partly to anchor the corporation to its market. It can be seen that both sets of factors are operative in the case of the entertainment industry.“For the year 2005, the average cost of production and marketing of films in the U.S. was between $92 million and $97 million. This means many large movie studios had returns of no more than 8% at best, while some hitherto successful studios had returns of 5% or less. Sales of DVDs declined, further eroding revenues. Online distribution of movies — downloadable films — is a serious concern for all production companies. Not only is technology (online distribution) changing the nature of the competition, but new players and new forms of content are rapidly competing for the same viewership dollars. Finally, other computer-mediated content forms – online games, video games and independently-produced video content on sites such as YouTube – are competing with films for audiences. So, like many other industries, Hollywood faces the double whammy of high costs and revenue pressures. And, like other industries, it is looking at alternatives. For instance, Canada is the destination for several productions, and now New Zealand and Eastern Europe are beginning to attract attention.”Aron argues that India needs to expand its business imprint in media and entertainment. The country has one of the largest cinema-watching populations and, with the rapid growth in size as well as the buying of power of the middle class, the Indian movie-watching market has become even more attractive. An additional feature is that growth of broadband in India will not penetrate the rural retail market in the near future. Even where it is available, it is small enough to leave a robust theater-going population intact. This, too, makes India an attractive destination.All those who are scrambling to get onto the BPO bandwagon should realize the distinction between “Made in India” and “Made for India,” Aron says. “In the traditional sense of offshoring – that is, using Indian skilled (and non-skilled labor) for global audiences – we will witness the following phases of growth. Production can be divided into artistic production (the output of writers, actors, musicians, cinematographers, directors, etc.) and non-artistic production (the set of activities that go into bringing a production to distribution-ready status). The first to be tapped will be the latter set of activities: production support to pre-production and post-production finishing.“The artistic production activities will not easily migrate from the U.S. and other locations. There are various reasons for this. First, anything that needs to be shot on location will be shot at the intended location. Just because Kerala markets itself as ‘God’s Own Country,’ you cannot shoot a film such as You’ve Got Mail there. Second, even studio pieces will largely be filmed in the U.S. (or Europe).Recreating scenes from the U.S. in Indian studios is not easy. For one thing, technologically many of the studios in India are generations behind their western counterparts. And, for another, there is considerable artistic participation in studio production – set designers, costume designers, etc. So these, too, will not migrate in the near future in great volumes.“‘Made for India’ is a different story altogether. Hollywood studios and independent financiers are now working with Indian counterparts to make films in India for an Indian audience but with some global reach, too. As this trend accelerates, we will see more films made for India through collaboration. Sony Pictures, Paramount, Hyde Park Entertainment and Disney are some examples. This, in turn, will have a second-order impact. It will see the diffusion of technologies and production techniques in India and will further enable India to bid for more segments of the production activity. So ‘Made for India’ will over time feed into the ‘Made in India’ trend.“But this is not going to happen anytime soon. Recall that with IT and financial services, the presence of MNCs in India for more than a century created a robust Indian middle- and upper-middle-management layer that was fully acquainted with the West and was ready to offer services and production standards on par with the Western corporations. It will take some time for that to happen in India.“Then there is another trend to keep in mind: the corporatization of Hollywood. As large corporations acquire movie studios (GE’s acquisition of Universal is a case in point) and investment funds increase their funding of movies, there will be greater willingness to see it as ‘a business’ — that is, decouple those parts of production that can be done offshore from those that need to be done onshore.“Finally, don’t underestimate the power of organized big labor in Hollywood. The entertainment industry is the bastion of unionized labor. Many actors and artists will not cross the union picket lines out of ideological sympathy. In the short run, unions will erect stiff barriers to offshoring. But over a period of time, it may well become counterproductive. Union intransigence and labor inflexibility were among the reasons that U.S. firms moved manufacturing to China. Now European firms are beginning to move to Asia for that reason.“So, for some time, India will have to take a two-tack approach: welcome ‘Made in India’ projects and encourage Bollywood to collaborate with Hollywood in the ‘Made for India’ projects,” says Aron.For the optimists at home, it is only a question of whether it will happen tomorrow or the day after. Bringing India up to speed can be done. It will be done, says Nandy who is bursting with confidence. “We are good at virtually everything we do,” he says. And India costs much less. “We are also ready to learn,” he continues. “So anything that is BPO-ed out here will result in innovative options that could teach Hollywood a trick or two in terms of finding creative solutions to complex techie problems. That will be the ultimate benefit of offshoring in this space.”Back in Pune, Jolie and Pitt provoked a debate. Some residents argued that the movie should not have been allowed to disrupt life in the city, though the grumbling was directed less at the stars than at the army of foreign paparazzi surrounding them. At one point things got so tense that one of the guards — who belonged to an outsourced security firm — pulled out his gun to threaten a photographer. Though no bullets were fired, it was an apt metaphor: Whether it is a cameraman or a security guard, everybody in India wants to get in on the action.Reprinted from knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu Related Items
Money flowed like the water of a flooded river in Bangalore on Saturday as top players in international cricket were bought by the 10 franchisees of the Indian Premier League. The amount splurged in the 2011 auction trumped the millions spent in the inaugural sale in 2008.If $1.55 million (Rs 7.13 crore) was the biggest amount spent till last season – on Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff – the fourth edition of the league kicked off with franchisees spending over $2 million (Rs 9.2 crore) on players like Gautam Gambhir ($2.4 mn; Rs11.04 cr), Robin Uthappa and Yusuf Pathan ($2.1 mn; Rs 9.66 cr).A player like Andrew Symonds commanded $1.35 million earlier (Rs 6.21 crore at current rate), but the trend this time around is clear – if you have to splurge, splurge on the Indian players. What emerged from the auction on Saturday is that the team owners have become smarter. It’s not that they didn’t make sound business decisions earlier or that the deals struck for the new season were reasonable.But if one is allowed to spend up to $9 mn (Rs 41.4 crore), it makes sense to spend one’s millions on Indian stars than on international ones.There are a few reasons behind it. Firstly, the Indian team is one of the top sides in world cricket right now and most of the players are in red hot form. And more importantly, they will be available for the entire duration of the IPL, unlike players from England or the West Indies.The unavailability of foreign players in previous editions hurt the franchisees, who paid them huge sums but couldn’t play them for a large number of games. The team owners have become wiser and have taken the availability of foreign players into account while deciding on their buys.advertisementIt is for that reason that the top seven most expensive players are Indians and the highest amount commanded by a foreign players is $1.5 million (Rs6.9 cr) – for Mahela Jayawardene by Kochi. What the teams have learnt is that irrespective of the quality of the international players, it will be the Indian stars who will form the backbone of the sides. They are the ones who will attract most of the crowds and will be most sought after.Another trend that was visible is the loss in market value of the Australian players. With the aura surrounding the players from Down Under fast diminishing with a string of defeats over the past year, the Aussies are not so much in demand.However, the stock of the English players hasn’t risen correspondingly. It has, however, gotten more to do with the uncertainty over their availability. In the inaugural auction, a lot of money was spent on international players who did well in their domestic T20 tournaments. But this time, the moolah has been splurged only on proven international performers as the franchises would rather take chances with unknown local talent.But the fact remains that unheard of amounts have been spent on players for a one-anda- half month tournament. Even in this apparent madness, there is a method. And the method is to back the Indians.IPL 4 teams till now:KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS Previous squad Sourav Ganguly; Ajit Agarkar; Shane Bond; Ashok Dinda; Chris Gayle; Brad Hodge; Murali Kartik; Brendon McCullum; Angelo Mathews; Ajantha Mendis; Cheteshwar Pujara; Wriddhiman Saha; Owais Shah; Ishant SharmaCurrent squadGautam Gambhir (Rs 11.04 cr), Yusuf Pathan (Rs 9.66 cr), Jacques Kallis (Rs 5.06cr), Brad Haddin (Rs 1.49), Shakeeb Al Hasan (Rs 1.95cr); Brett Lee (Rs 1.84cr); Eoin Morgan (Rs 1.61 cr); Manoj Tiwary (Rs 2.18cr)ROYAL CHALLENGERs BANGALOREPrevious squad Anil Kumble; Mark Boucher; Rahul Dravid; Dillon du Preez; Shreevats Goswami; Jacques Kallis; Virat Kohli; Praveen Kumar; Abhimanyu Mithun; Kevin PieteRs en; Steven Smith; Dale Steyn; Ross Taylor; RobinCurrent squad Tillakaratne Dilshan (Rs 2.99 cr), Zaheer Khan (Rs 4.14 cr), AB de VillieRs (Rs 5.06 cr), Daniel Vettori (Rs 2.53 cr), Saurabh Tiwary (Rs 7.36 cr); Dirk Nannes (Rs 2.99 cr); Cheteshwar Pujara (Rs 3.22 cr); Virat Kohli (retained)RAJASTHAN ROYALSPrevious squad Shane Warne; Swapnil Asnodkar; Johan Botha; Abhishek Jhunjhunwala; Kamran Khan; Michael Lumb; Morne Morkel; Naman Ojha; Munaf Patel; Yusuf Pathan; Shaun Tait; Siddharth Trivedi; Adam Voges; Graeme Smith Uthappa; Cameron WhiteCurrent squad Ross Taylor (Rs 2.6 cr), Rahul Dravid (Rs 2.3 cr), Johan Botha (Rs 4.37 cr); Paul Collingwood (Rs 1.15 cr); Shane Warne (retained); Shane Watson (retained)MUMBAI INDIANSPrevious squad Sachin Tendulkar; Dwayne Bravo; Shikhar Dhawan; JP Duminy; Dilhara Fernando; Harbhajan Singh; Zaheer Khan; Dhawal Kulkarni; Lasith Malinga; Ali Murtaza; Abhishek Nayar; Kieron Pollard; Aditya Tare; Saurabh TiwaryCurrent squad Rohit Sharma (Rs 9.2 cr), Andrew Symonds (Rs 3.91 cr), David Jacobs (Rs 87 lakh), James Franklin (Rs 46 lakh); Sachin Tendulkar (retained); Harbhajan Singh (retained); Kieron Pollard (retained); Lasith Malinga (retained)advertisementDECCAN CHARGERSPrevious squad Adam Gilchrist; Anirudh Singh; Azhar Bilakhia; HeRs chelle Gibbs; Harmeet Singh; Ryan Harris; VVS Laxman; Mitchell MaRs h; Pragyan Ojha; Ravi Teja; Kemar Roach; Rohit Sharma; RP Singh; T Suman; Andrew SymondsCurrent squadKevin PieteRs en (Rs 2.99 cr), Cameron White (Rs 5.06 cr), Kumar Sangakkara (Rs 3.22 cr), JP Duminy (Rs 1.38 cr), Shikhar Dhawan (Rs 1.38 cr); Dale Steyn (Rs 5.52 cr); Amit Mishra (Rs 1.38 cr); Ishant Sharma (Rs 2.07 cr) Pragyan Ojha (Rs 2.3 cr)MUMBAI INDIANSPrevious squad Sachin Tendulkar; Dwayne Bravo; Shikhar Dhawan; JP Duminy; Dilhara Fernando; Harbhajan Singh; Zaheer Khan; Dhawal Kulkarni; Lasith Malinga; Ali Murtaza; Abhishek Nayar; Kieron Pollard; Aditya Tare; Saurabh TiwaryCurrent squad Rohit Sharma (Rs 9.2 cr), Andrew Symonds (Rs 3.91 cr), David Jacobs (Rs 87 lakh), James Franklin (Rs 46 lakh); Sachin Tendulkar (retained); Harbhajan Singh