Given the kind of content OTT platforms cater to and the reach they offer, Kirti Kulhari is a big fan of the medium. Maybe that’s why when asked her take on the current OTT versus theatre debate, the actor doesn’t see any problem if a maker wants to choose either of them to release a ready film during this ongoing pandemic.
Kulhari tells us, “Everyone is looking out for themselves, which is understandable. The whole theatre thing is a big question mark right now, while distributors are suffering. A film which is ready technically, theatrically — the lockdown has changed everything. I personally love OTT platforms, and watch most of my stuff on it.”
The 35-year-old goes on to add that what also works in the favour of online platforms instead of a traditional release is reach.
“I really don’t feel anything wrong in the producers and makers taking this decision together. Right now, distributors are at the receiving end. Rather than letting everyone suffer, somebody can get their money back if they have a deal,” opines the Mission Mangal actor.
Kulhari who garnered praise for two seasons of her web show Four More Shots Please!, further points that web content is easily accessible. “The kind of reach OTTs have is humongous, so why not? Producers take their chance to secure themselves first, and then have a reach which is what every filmmaker looks for that whatever they’re making should reach as many people as possible,” she explains.
However, she doesn’t deny that cinema has its own charm and maintains that nothing else can replace that experience. “Cinema is very experiential. It’s about experiencing something on a 70mm screen. That’s irreplaceable. But practically speaking, I also feel that OTT has worked out very well, in terms of my work reaching a lot of people, which I feel is always somewhat limited in Bollywood,” points Kulhari.
One might have distributors in some countries, but the actor feels that the internet transcends that, resulting in the project grabbing more eyeballs. “OTTs are there in 140 countries, that experience can’t be replaced. It’s a practical time, and not to get sentimental about things. If you have finished the film, do you want to wait for whatever time, or ultimately get it out?” she asks.
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