Uzair Zaheer Khan, director of Allahyar and the Legend of Markhor, and Founder, 3rd World Studios, in conversation with Karvan. 

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1. What inspired you to become an animator?
As a kid, I’ve always had a fascination for art and animation!

2. What were your early animation projects?
My early animation projects were mostly international commercials and game projects.

3. You were associated with Burka Avenger as director and head of production. How was the character conceived and how did the audience respond to this animated series?
Burka Avenger was conceived by Haroon Rashid. We were fully satisfied with the response as we achieved our goal of setting a new benchmark in Pakistani animated content.

4. Allahyar and the Legend of Markhor (AATLOM) received unprecedented praise from Pakistan and the world. Were you expecting this kind of praise?
The response to Allahyar was a pleasant surprise as we didn’t expect the audiences to appreciate our debut project to this extent.

5. What challenges did you and your team face when making AATLOM?
I could write a whole book on the challenges faced however the final product came to be worth every effort.

6. AATLOM was the first Pakistani movie rendered on an Unreal Engine (game engine). Tell our readers a bit about this software and how did you decide to use it?
Allahyar wasn’t the first Pakistani movie to be rendered in a game engine but was, in fact, the first ever film to be made using a game engine! We decided to use Epic Games’, Unreal Engine because it is the most impressive and powerful software available out there.

7. How do you see animation evolving in Pakistan?
I think that Pakistan has a lot of potential and a great future in this field.

8. You have been a part of animated projects for both television and cinema. How different is to work for these two industries?
Cinema is the acme of creative expression and therefore requires the best standard of production.

9. What is the current state of our animation industry?
It’s growing day by day and gradually turning into an industry.

10. Your message for aspiring animators of Pakistan?
Even though it’s a lot of fun, it is also a lot of hard work hence it is important to have realistic expectations and be prepared to put in a lot of effort towards learning and growing.

Special thanks to Eyad Ibrahim from 3rd World Studios in coordinating with this interview with Uzair Zaheer Khan.

KARVAN envision to showcase the best and the brightest talent from Pakistan. If you have achieved an academic, personal or a professional milestone, or know someone who did, do send us a brief profile at [email protected].

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