'Our show won't take the saas-bahu route'

Published: Nov 19, 2019, 08:42 IST | Letty Mariam Abraham | Mumbai

Ready with their second outing Dil Yeh Ziddi Hai, creators Viraj Kapur and Karan Raj Kohli on why television has its charm despite the advent of OTT

Viraj Kapur and Karan Raj Kohli
Viraj Kapur and Karan Raj Kohli

Viraj Kapoor and Karan Raj Kohli, producers of the web series Haq Se and the television show Dil Yeh Ziddi Hai, are probably the youngest producers in the entertainment business. We catch up with the creators, who are keen to try their hand at the television after making a splash in digital entertainment. Edited excerpts from the interview.

Was production always the dream?
Kapur: My grandfather owned one of the first independent studios in Mumbai [Khanna House]. So, I have grown up on sets. Karan and I met at film school. We both had the hunger to tell socially relevant stories. Our first offering, Haq Se, was about the ambitions harboured by four sisters from Kashmir. Dil Yeh Ziddi Hai is about an ordinary girl with the hunger to achieve goals regardless of the fact that she is blind.
Kohli: I am a Delhi boy; I moved to Mumbai seven years ago. It has been a learning experience since. Ekta Kapoor has been a big support because she knows how to back her talent. We learned the tricks of the trade from one of the best.

Why make a television show when everyone is shifting to OTT platforms?
Kohli: We are excited to tell stories regardless of the size of the screen. Digital is a smaller screen, films play out on a larger one, but this is a screen that is in everybody's homes. Through television, we reach out to not only viewers across India but all over the world. The problem is that people have been stereotyping television shows for long.

Several shows start with honest intentions, but turn into saas-bahu dramas to garner TRPs.
Kapur: Our show will not be going in that direction as of now. We are trying to keep it different and young.

Isn't web a more viable option since it doesn't have the pressure of TRPs or of churning out episodes daily?
Kohli: We will explore films and digital entertainment, too. At the moment, we want to do TV regardless of the constraints.
Kapur: The medium doesn't matter as long as the story is relevant. Internationally, creators don't differentiate between TV and digital entertainment. Nowadays, people divide 50 episodes into seasons.

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