Audiences No Longer Forced Into Appointment Viewing

Mumbai: Filmmaker Ram Madhvani during the success party of film Kapoor & Sons in Mumbai on April 3, 2016. (Photo: IANS)
Filmmaker Ram Madhvani during the success party of film Kapoor & Sons in Mumbai on April 3, 2016.


After garnering critical acclaim for his film “Neerja”, Ram Madhvani is working on a web series titled “Bodhidharma: Master of Shaolin”. The director feels going digital is the future, and says that audience is no longer stifled by the practice of setting time aside to watch particular content.

Madhvani along with lyricist, screenwriter and ad guru Prasoon Joshi, is working on the action series, based on the story of a warrior prince of the sixth century who became the founder of the Shaolin Temple in China and the founder of martial arts.

The show – which is one of the Indian original shows for Amazon Prime Video – is expected to be a visual spectacle with martial arts, music backed by great storytelling.

Madhvani says he wanted to make a film on the same story initially.

“Prasoon Joshi and I have been working on a feature film called ‘Bodhi Dharma Master of Shaolin’. And as Prasoon kept writing, we realized that it was becoming longer than what a feature film length normally is,” Madhvani told IANS over an email from Mumbai.

Talking about his decision to go digital, he said: “Digital is the future and content viewing on the digital platform is where the world and India is going and we are very excited to be at the forefront of this.”

Madhvani said: “The audience is no longer hand cuffed by appointment viewing and have the freedom to see what they want, when they want, at a very reasonable cost”.

He explained that this “not only expands the audience base but is very liberating for both the audience and the creators”.

Many people see Hollywood as a threat to Bollywood. But for Madhvani it doesn’t hold true.

“India is a pluralistic society and our past has told us that we somehow can invite, assimilate and yet be our own. We as Indians see no contradictions in that idea of being rooted in our culture, yet embracing the best of any other. That’s true whether it’s for food or films. We know that we need to speak to our audience in our ways within our culture,” he said.

For now, Madhvani is busy with the ten-episode web series.