2020 is always seen as the year of the pandemic. It is the year when all of humanity was forced to remain socially distant and locked in their homes for fear of an unknown virus that could neither be seen nor heard. With its numerous disadvantages came numerous possibilities. The opportunity to spend more time with your family, to have as many vacations at once as it was our lifelong dream, the opportunity to reflect and reflect on our lives and so many others.
One such opportunity that we all saw as a film brotherhood was the surge in viewership on OTT platforms. Since multiplexes were closed and our main source of entertainment was a show on Netflix or Hotstar, we loved this medium, which was in secondary education until the pandemic.
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Casting director Mukesh Chhabra shares his thoughts on this huge change in the entertainment industry, where content is mainly consumed on the OTT platforms: “Most of the films have been released online, including my directorial debut Dil Bechara and some shows and films that I was cast as a casting director. The heartwarming response I received even though Dil Bechara was published online was simply overwhelming. I was really concerned and kept wondering if people would actually see it if it streamed online before it was released. But to be honest, I couldn’t be happier and more blessed with the response I received to my directing film. The potential of an online platform is so great that we haven’t even explored it enough. I feel that as an audience we have more accepted and, to some extent, fallen in love with this online medium, which can view and stream content from the comfort of their own home or anywhere. “
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He adds, “The fact that these platforms offer so many options that we even explored shows and movies that we wouldn’t normally see. Aside from that, it has opened up numerous opportunities for actors and filmmakers. Without the concept of a box office hit, producers are also willing to take the risk of investing in what appears to be new content. Actors experiment with roles and break the stereotype. “
“The pandemic has been a blessing when it comes to consuming more content and making content more accessible to viewers. From a personal standpoint, I’ve played and enjoyed so many series that I probably never would have had the time to watch them on a busy day at work. Through the content I’ve seen online, I’ve been able to identify and discover new talent. “
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“I have also taken the initiative to open offices across India in various states. The online medium is perfect for me and my team to discover talent in every corner, not just in India but around the world. I have set up offices in Delhi, Lucknow, Chandigarh in addition to my Mumbai office so that actors don’t have to spend money traveling to Mumbai and staying here for an additional cost. You can sit in the comfort of your home and send me your introduction / auditions. My team in the offices will help the actors and support them with the audition. “
This emerging entertainment platform has also increased opportunities for young talent in India and shared its views on this aspect. Mukesh says, “This creates more opportunities and I am very happy when I can bring more and more talent to the world of cinema and give actors. It also creates a space for actors to reach out to us. We want to be more accessible to talent. I always say we only exist because of good actors. I have to surprise everyone with new faces and powerful actors. Faces that come from different parts of the country. I also want to enable everyone to dream and realize their acting dreams. “
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As a content consumer, Mukesh says, while highlighting the economics of online platforms, “As a viewer, I’ve been given unlimited access to different genres of content at a very competitive price. For example, if I had to see a single movie in a theater I would pay around 500 rupees, but in this case I can see 10 films or more for the same price or even less. This obviously gives OTT platforms an advantage over multiplexing. Of course there is no comparison to the viewing experience, but with most people this is not an important factor. “
He sums it up: “So much has changed in the way we run our projects now. I’m just glad that almost everything is now back on track. With the required SOPs we also started the shooting schedules and the work almost feels like normal. I think it’s only a matter of time and we’ll be as good as normal. Until then, we’d better stay safe and protect everyone around us. “
With huge and exciting projects like Brahmāstra, 83, Atrangi Re, Shaabash Mithu and Laal Singh Chadda in his pipeline, Mukesh Chabbra is ready to start with a bang in 2021!