2020 has seen many peaks and valleys, but it was sure a great year to start for Ace casting director Mukesh Chabbra. His film, Dil Bechara as a debut director has received a huge response from viewers across the nation. Mukesh talks to Media Infoline about his casting process in the Emmy Award-winning show Delhi Crime. Also expresses his thoughts on OTT platforms, movies, and his upcoming projects. Let’s dig into the interview.
Q) How has 2020 treated you?
It was a year of a lot of ups and downs. There were many happy moments as the year started with Dil Bechara (debut directorial film). Then Delhi Crime got into Emmys. There were also sad moments with Sushant (Singh Rajput) leaving us. It was a year full of mixed emotions with a lot of learning.
Q) What is your feeling about ‘Delhi Crime’ winning for ‘Best Drama’ at the Emmy Awards?
It was a very overwhelming feeling. It feels great when you get appreciation globally. To be frank, I am surprised also but very glad about the win. It was a happening show to cast and a challenging one. Delhi Crime is a very well made show and I am happy for everyone.
Q) How was the casting procedure?
It was very difficult to do casting for Delhi Crime. As we all know, it was a heinous act that trembled the entire nation. So, it was a real challenge to re-create and talk about the incident. I am happy that people liked the casting. But it was a very disturbing story so, yes, the casting was difficult.
Q) Is there a difference between casting for web-series and cinema?
I think casting involves hard work. Whether it is a web-series or a cinema, both need perfect casting. The good thing about casting for the digital platform is having no pressure. You can cast anyone, whosoever is right for the role. And the difficult part is you have to select a number of people for casting, as there are a lot of characters that go in a story. All else is the same for both platforms.
Q) How was your overall experience as a debut director Dil Bechara?
Because of the pandemic, Dil Bechara was released on OTT platform. It got very good coverage in the form of viewership. Everyone saw it, from small towns to big. I feel very blessed to have received so much love and appreciation. We got all the emotional support.
Q) Your reaction to Self-regulation Code on OTT platforms?
I think it’s okay that restriction is imposed. In case, they must have detected some issue that is why put a restriction on it, which correct. I also believe we should concentrate on our work and keep on making good shows which are available to all.
Q) OTT platforms play a role for emerging actors. What do you think?
It is a very good platform for all actors. OTTs are one of the biggest revolutions. A lot of newcomers have made their path starting from OTT. Anyways, all actors are equal, no big daddy is required. So it’s a great platform for everyone.
Q) OTTs are becoming a new medium of entertainment. Do you think it can eradicate the existence of theatre in the future?
I don’t think so. Because the theatre experience is totally different. That outing culture for watching a movie at the theatre will never go. People will definitely go to theatres once Covid19 is over. Because of this pandemic situation, OTT has taken over the place of theatre. But it would resume soon.
Q) What are your upcoming projects for the year 2021? Are there any films you are directing?
A lot of them are coming this year, Brahmāstra, 83, Atrangi Re, Shaabash Mithu, and Laal Singh Chadda. No directorial project as of now.