Films skipping theatrical releases amid the pandemic means many of the big names of Bollywood are heading to OTT by default given the circumstances. But Aahana Kumra feels that that is not a concern to those who are already established names in the OTT world.
“It will happen, now we have to share our platform with big stars. Earlier they used to share their platform with us. There is no way out, what do you do?” she asks.
Kumra says it is all about getting work and being visible in front of the masses but even that has its own challenges.
“Films for theatres are hardly being made. So many OTT projects are being made but the time been crunched. A 50-day shoot is being done in 25 days. The budgets have shrunk, and everything has shrunk. For us it is like ‘should I take up the work or not and should I be a snoot and be unemployed in a time like Covid when everyone is trying to hold on to their jobs,” she says.
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The actor, who has starred in web series such as Inside Edge, Rangbaaz, Marzi and Betaal, says even the big stars have the same concern to come into unchartered territory. “They are like, ‘should I be relevant now on OTT or should I just wait for films to happen and release.’ That might be a long wait. It is not easy for them, to come down to OTT. It is not an easy decision. But there is no choice now.I won’t say it is a step down but they don’t know this territory, they don’t know the audience,” she explains.
Kumra feels that even if the OTT players and makers start chasing big names from now on, there is no guarantee for success as the biggest critic is the audience, which is different from their theatre audience.
“This audience is brutal. They will bajaao you if you performance is not good. They don’t care, they are mean. They say it to you face. They are not trolling you, if they don’t like your work, they will tell you to look in to the mirror, pull up your socks and do something,”
And the audience is not forgiving, Kumra point out, while adding, “They are like there are other young actors who are better. So suck it up. This is fine because for all our life what actors like us got to hear was that we are not good enough, big enough, or just not enough. Even if big stars are coming on OTT, they will have to prove their mettle. They might chase stars but it means nothing if the content is not accepted.”
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