With OTT, we are still in the nascent stage. Exploiting the medium is herd mentality but that happens everywhere: Ali Fazal
When he landed the role of Guddu in Mirzapur, Ali Fazal didn’t imagine the immense popularity the show would garner. With the rise of OTT especially in 2020, the actor feels this is just the beginning. “On OTT, we are still at a nascent stage. It is hard to understand when there’s content coming every week but we also have to see what is holding the standard up or competing with international shows. Jahan shahed giregi wahaan cheetiyan hongi. The problem is that we jump to conclusion before we see the results. This is the time when we are finding a voice on OTT. It was the same with films. When we learnt how to make new and original ones, bahut chaupat films bhi banti thi,” says The Victoria & Abdul (2017) actor.
There might be fresh content out every week on various OTT platforms but Fazal is hopeful that we won’t lose quality. “I think we have realised that there is a lot of audience for a variety of content in India and people are milking it. That is the mentality of the business! Fresh content out every week doesn’t mean we lose quality. When we make 300 films a year, there are some shitty ones while only a handful are blockbusters but one or two are etched in history. We would label films like arty, commercial, low- budget film which we should avoid as it doesn’t help,” he shares.
The actor agrees that there is herd mentality and people are perhaps even going overboard as businesses take advantage of the rising trend and therefore exploit the medium. “That happens everywhere. OTT is the next big thing and it is taking over the whole country. We have to be mindful of quality. Like TV and films had a distinct identity for a long time and there was a beautiful culture and value attached to both, which we sort of lost it. Today, both mediums need work. We have lost the simplicity and we have to navigate our way back to the quality we used to produce. Shows like Dekh Bhai Dekh and Nukaad were so simple and impactful. Viewers had fun,” he signs off.