4 More Shots Please stars Sayani Gupta and Maanvi Gagroo spoke on how streaming platforms are a huge leveller and more on India Today e-Mind Rocks 2020.

globalmovie     30 Jul,2020         No Comment

Sayani Gupta and Maanvi Gagroo on e-Mind Rocks 2020: OTT is a huge leveller

sayani-guptaActresses Sayani Gupta and Maanvi Gagroo, who’ve worked in both films and web series, feel OTT platforms are a huge leveller. With the pandemic and the lockdown, films of big stars like Amitabh Bachchan, Akshay Kumar and Ajay Devgn are also making its way to the streaming platforms. However, content is the king here.

On Indian Today e-Mind Rocks 2020, in a session titled Shot to stardom: The sassy women conquering the streaming space, Maanvi Gagroo and Sayani Gupta spoke on how OTT platforms have brought everyone on the same level. “I agree that OTT is a huge leveller and has changed things for actors, especially for them who are starting out. I have always given the example of Pankaj Tripathi, who has been this exquisite actor. He has been amazing in everything he has done but only in Mirzapur, you could see him in huge hoardings. And suddenly everybody was talking about Pankaj Tripathi and everyone wanted to cast him. It’s not like overnight he became a good actor but overnight the limelight shone on him that it hadn’t before and that was only possible with OTT platforms,” said Sayani Gupta.

Sayani also feels that shows like Paatal Lok proved that good projects don’t need star power anymore. “With shows like Paatal Lok and many others, you realise that you don’t need a star anymore, you need an actor who is fit to play that particular part in the best way. That has also given scope to writers and directors to flesh out characters that are not stereotypical hero, heroine and villain. It’s really changed a lot of things.”

Sayani also said that it is better for small-budget films to release on OTT platforms. “With the pandemic, you don’t really know when we are going back to the theatres. Unless it is a big-budget, huge film, it also doesn’t make sense for people to release it because anyway theatres are going to cut 50 per cent of their capacity. Even monetarily it doesn’t make sense for smaller films or any film to go to theatres right away. But I hope we get back to theatres because it’s a different vibe and different experience to watch a film on the big screen,” added Sayani.

Maanvi Gagroo feels films and TV shows were beginning to get jaded and people needed something fresh to be offered and OTT platforms are catering to that need. She said, “A couple of things happened together that was in favour of the OTT platform as a medium. Because it is new so the voices are more contemporary. Films and TV were old media and they have been around for a while. So, they were beginning to get a little jaded in terms of content and modus operandi. People are also trying different things, so everybody is experimenting with formats. So, there is a lot of freshness for sure. And in our conversation, thankfully, we are talking about things like women not getting enough fleshed-out characters. Also, what has happened is the target audience is very different, at least in the beginning when the OTT platform started as a medium. OTT catered to audience ages 15-45, who had nothing to watch apart from films or international series. Now, because of OTT, accessibility to content has been levelled out completely. Anybody can access it. Because that levelling has happened, now the only way you can compare or weigh people is on the basis of content or performance.”

When asked how comfortable they were during the lovemaking scenes in 4 More Shots Please, Maanvi said, “In Season 1, I was little more uncomfortable because I was doing it for the first time as an actor. During the production of Season 1, it changed. I was making it bigger than it was. As it is like any other scene that you are shooting but that is something you realise on your own. We just build a ‘hauaa’ around it. In Season 2, familiarity was there, not just with the nature of the scene but also with the co-actors. That way it was a lot easier. I am really worried about Season 3 because I don’t know what’s that going to look like in a post-pandemic world. Both Sayani and I are paranoid about that aspect of it.”

Sayani Gupta had a different take on it. The actress said that she was the only one who wasn’t worried about it, as she had done such scenes before in many of her films. “I remember asking Maanvi am ‘I the only one not worried?’. I went to film school then and I had done a lot of projects, which required intimacy and I had done workshops. I knew it’s a technical thing and you have to get the technicalities right. I wasn’t worried at all and I remember asking Maanvi ‘should I be worrying?’.”

However, now Sayani has started worrying about these scenes. “It was never something that worried me but I think with time it started worrying me. And now, I am like maybe I don’t want to do it. Because later it just gets misconstrued. People make weird videos and then it becomes viral. With the editing, it becomes strange and vulgar. It wasn’t like that before and is totally out of context. After the release of the second season, there was a meme where half a sentence of what I had said in the show had been taken out and it was made into these strange videos, which was horrifying. Now, after the show I have become more cautious,” shared Sayani.

Maanvi Gagroo and Sayani Gupta will reprise their role in 4 More Shots Please Season 3. The third season was announced immediately after the second season began streaming and became a huge hit.

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