With no box-office pressure and the lines between web series and feature films blurring, Bollywood actors like Abhishek Bachchan, Arjun Rampal and Kunal Kemmu are more than thrilled to get a taste of the “interesting space” — the digital world — that is “breaking different geographical and time barriers”.
After lending his voice to the Hindi dubbed version of Netflix’s ‘Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle’ last year, Bachchan will be making his digital on-screen debut with the second season of Amazon Prime Original series ‘Breathe’.
Actor Emraan Hashmi’s first web series ‘The Bard Of Blood’ will also premiere on Netflix soon.
Actor Kunal Kemmu is already keeping the audience on the edge of their seats with his maiden web series ‘Abhay’, an eight-episode crime thriller that premiered earlier this month on ZEE5.
“It’s a new platform for me and new experience. It’s a longer commitment. By the time I will be done with eight episodes, there will be about seven hours of footage. So playing a character for seven hours and playing a character for two hours on screen... There’s a difference. It’s a process that I am enjoying,” said Kemmu.
“The OTT platform is not dependent on a Friday. So, makers are not like ‘Oh! if I have to put in money, I need a star who will get a good opening on Friday’. This is subscribers-based platform,” he added.
For the ‘Golmaal Again’ actor, it was an “instinctive call”.
“It was a break away from the kind of roles that I was doing. In the past few years, I have been doing a lot of comedy. Then suddenly, there was a comeback to intense and drama parts. Most importantly, when you are on set working, it is no different from a film’s set,” he added.
'Web series as good as movies'
Senior actor Sanjay Mishra, who has joined the cast of ALTBalaji’s upcoming web series ‘Booo... Sabki Phategi’, said: “Web series are now no less than a movie in terms of production quality, writing and other aspects.”
“I think web is a new space and the next big thing, the audience can watch content anytime and anywhere so why not provide them with content.”
Along with him, actor Tusshar Kapoor will make his digital debut with ‘Booo.. Sabki Phategi’.
“Comedy is something that comes naturally to me. I love the genre — horror-comedy and it gave me immense joy to hear that I would be working with [director] Farhad Samji and [producer] Paritosh Painter,” he said.
“As soon as I heard the narration from them, it was an instant reaction for me to be a part of this. There was no strategy involved behind a horror-comedy being my debut web series. Also, Farhad being like my family is an addition. We have been together because of ‘Golmaal’ for many years now.”
Kapoor said the digital space was extremely “huge right now, breaking different geographical and time barriers”.
Among other actors, Rampal recently made his digital debut with ‘The Final Call’. Huma Qureshi will be seen in upcoming Netflix series ‘Leila’ and Arshad Warsi will star in VOOT’s ‘Asura’.