Call it a coincidence but in the week when Sanjay Leela Bhansali unveiled the teaser of his Alia Bhatt starrer Gangubai Kathiawadi, the makers of Kamathipura announced plans for the arrival of their web series. Though former still has some time to go before its theatrical release this summer, latter is all set to arrive on OTT platform Disney + Hotstar this Women’s Day (8th March).
“Well, as I have always maintained, life is a trip and you never know where it can take you. To think of it, we shot for Kamthipura back in September 2019 and completed it soon. I am sure Sanjay Leela Bhansali may not have even thought of making Gangubai Kathiawadi back then since he was shooting for his love story with Salman Khan and Alia Bhatt,” chuckles Tanuj Virwani, who would be back on the OTT medium after the hattrick of successes (Inside Edge S1 & 2, Poison, Code M).
Readers would remember that the filmmaker was making Inshallah with Salman Khan and Alia Bhatt before it was shelved. A few months later, Bhansali began work on Gangubai Kathiawadi, though by that time Kamathipura was ready.
Tanuj is not thinking much about comparisons, “I actually feel that a massive project like Gangubai Kathiawadi is good as it puts Kamathipura in light. Of course at the end of the day the content needs to be good. I picked this up as I love thrillers. I have been fond of it over the years and even though I have worked for just 6-7 days in Kamathipura, I wanted to do it since the character that I play has a larger role to play even in a small duration. It helps propel the story forward.”
In the web series, Tanuj plays an out and out antagonist who has a bone to pick with the cop character played by Meerra Chopra. Meanwhile, for someone who was amongst the first to step into the OTT medium when it was in infancy, it was nothing short of ironical that he had to wait for an entire period of lockdown for his offerings to start coming in, what with as many as six to seven releases planned for 2021.
“I wasn’t worried even during the delay since in knew that I had various projects in different stages of production,” smiles Tanuj, “It was an improbable situation for all of us as nothing could be done due to pandemic. In fact the only time I was worried was when after the first season of Inside Edge my next web series Poison came only in 2019. That was the time when I wanted to consolidate my position. As for 2020, I knew that it was just a matter of time as there was light at the end of the tunnel. I was happy to keep my head down, keep shooting and play the waiting game.”
Well, it has all turned out to be worth it after all, what with Kamathipura and Tandoor, followed by second season of Code M, Cartel, a (yet untitled) web series with Disney + Hotstar, Illegal 2 and Murshid slated to arrive in quick succession.