With City of Dreams in its third season, creator Kukunoor and producer Nair on how political thriller was initially imagined as interpersonal relationship drama
A still from the series
In City of Dreams, which is running in its third season, creator Nagesh Kukunoor takes us into the malicious world of politics, telling the story of a politician father-daughter duo. Oddly though, during its inception, the Atul Kulkarni, Sachin Pilgaonkar and Priya Bapat-led show was not envisioned as a political drama. Producer Sameer Nair, whose banner Applause Entertainment backs the series, reveals, “Nagesh had written a fully fleshed-out story called The Affair. It was about a group of people in Mumbai and how their lives intersected. I told him that we loved his story, but had a [suggestion]: instead of the story going from city to city, why don’t we make it as a political drama set in Mumbai? So, it became City of Dreams from The Affair.” He adds that several sub-plots from The Affair found their way into the Disney+ Hotstar series.
Nagesh Kukunoor and Nair
Kukunoor, game for trying something new, displayed no reluctance in changing the story and attempting a genre that he had “zero knowledge about.” To the filmmaker, the show’s success is a testament to the creative partnership Nair and he have forged. The two are teaming up again for the web series, Trail of an
Assassin. Kukunoor says, “We’ve been working on other projects. Six years are ample proof of the bond Sameer and I have [developed]. None of our meetings are dreadful, or filled with stupid questions, which often happens otherwise.”