The 70 year veteran actor Naseeruddin Shah has weighed in on OTT platforms during the month of the release of his first OTT web-series “Bandish Bandits”. He plays a classical musician on the show and is a no-nonsense mentor to his grandson (played by Ritwik Bhomwik) in traditional classical music.
When Mahesh Bhatt’s film “Janam” premired on DD National” back in 1985, Shah said he already saw a wave coming. This platform showed that the great movie palaces (cinema theaters) were not going to be the same ever again. It opened up the possibility that one day theaters will start declining. Now while that hasn’t happened in the age of Television, we can notice a certain trend in streaming platforms. There can be parallels drawn from both scenarios.
Plus a lot of good writing happens in OTT; a lot of new ideas can be tested out and there are no proper censors over our heads, says “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” actor. That won’t be the case for much longer he adds. Besides, there is no pressure from studios or producers to cast a certain actor or to include this scene or to add that song, etc, continues Shah. As a result a lot of interesting work happens on OTT platforms.
It is interesting to see him working in this new format while in the web-series, he is an orthodox, close minded teacher who regularly instills ‘my way or the highway’ with his students. The theme is a duel of traditional and modern music, and we can draw several parallels with the ‘old’ cinemas and the ‘new’ OTTs.
Naseeruddin has already worked on a few short films in the digital format and has cited that he has enjoyed working on the platform and the young people he met during his work. “Bandish Bandits” will premier on August 5th which will be available to watch on Amazon Prime Video.
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