Pixar experiments with religion in Hindu short film Sanjay’s Super Team.
Pixar released a teaser of its short film Sanjay's Super Team that touches the touchy subject of religion. The short film project is headed by Pixar animator and illustrator Sanjay Patel. While it's Pixar's first stint around the subject of religion, it also happens to be Sanay's first as a director. Joining Pixar in 1996, his first film was A Bug’s Life. Patel has been a part of several films over the years including The Incredibles, Monsters, Inc. and Toy Story 3.
The trailer shows Sanjay, a kid who is busy watching a cartoon on the television. He is excitedly watching the “Super Team” show, with a matching superhero figurine in hand, when he’s suddenly interrupted by the ring of bells indicating that it is time for morning prayers. His father is preparing to perform Hindu rituals.
Sanjay is not keen on taking his eyes off the television and turns up the volume to drown out the sounds of the bells. His dad immediately puts down the bell and turns down the volume with the remote. Sanjay then turns up the volume to maximum, only to have his father turn it off. Sanjay turns around to see his dad signaling him to come and sit beside him and join him with the routine religious practice. Sanjay reluctantly walks to the mat where his dad is seated, concealing his superhero toy in one hand. His dad signals him to hand over the figurine that he has behind his back.
Pixar's latest short film explores religion and cultural and generational differences. The film captures the director Sanjay's experiences when he was young. It shows the conflict of interests between a young boy who is immersed in pop culture– from Sanjay's perspective as a first generation Indian-American, and his father who is deeply involved with Hindu traditions and practices. Sanjay, who is bored by the religious practices of his father, instead pictures Hindu Gods as superheroes. Soon, Sanjay sets out on an amazing journey, taking home a renewed outlook on the situation that has them arrive at a common ground of sorts.