In Conversation with Director Deepak Pandey: On EORTV, (the OTT platform aimed at the LGBTQ community) and more

Deepak Pandey is a renowned industry veteran and has been helming EORTV (the Premier Video on Demand, OTT media service platform with a differentiated philosophy to focus on the LGBTQ audiences and other communities) right from inception. He started his career as a cinematographer in the Indian television industry. He made his directorial debut with ‘I love US’ which was released on Footloose Youtube channel. He has also directed ‘Shaurya’ which aired on Sony LIV, The Bull of Dalal street, Halala, Paanchali, Singardaan, #metoo, Dance Bar, Tadap and many more for Ullu channel. He was awarded the best director award for the series, Halala. He plays a vital role in establishing the series and is known to experiment in his craft while exploring new technologies in the market.

We at MAM spoke to Deepak recently & given below is an excerpt from the conversation-

How does it feel to straddle multiple areas, television, OTT and cinema? How challenging is it?
It gets difficult sometimes if I’ll be very honest. To understand the psyche of the viewer is not easy. Writing stories around the LGBTQ community is more challenging. I always try to create emotional magic in my content. Currently my focus is to manage content for EORTV only and tell stories which will be loved by the audiences.

What do you enjoy more, cinematography or direction? Why?
I like this one and it’s difficult to pick. Cinematography was my first love and will always be. When I was into cinematography I was flowing through every frame of my life and told stories through my visuals. Now I tell the story through audio visual and this is my new found love. So I am having a good time and enjoying the process. Cinematography is like my strong base. It helps me in creating magic in my direction. Photography always deals with the technical aspects and direction always deals with human emotions. So it’s a perfect balance that I am trying to maintain and apply in the content I create. At the end of the day, I’m a storyteller, have always been one. I have done that through my lenses, by using best of my knowledge and creating the magical world as needed in the script. This journey through lenses further pushed me to become a director. To envisage the entire story and sharing it with my audience is what I feel made the transition. My years in cinematography helped me understand the medium better for the stories to unfold better. I cherish the great grounding that I have had.

Does your long experience as a cinematographer help you when you are directing a project? Could you elaborate on it?
Of Course yes, the journey begins when I go for the recce to finalise the location or have to communicate with the art director or deal with the dop. When I am building a set or a frame, two things come to my mind, how my cinematographer is going to create magic through the light and how is he going to create a source for it. In the meanwhile my other side of the brain thinks how my art director is going to pop up the set so I can create movement and direct my actors. These two battles always happen in my mind and because I have experience of being on sets for years now, it’s easier to support my team and make quick decisions.

How was the experience of working on Shaurya?
I
t was a great experience. I always wanted to tell the story about people who lived for others and died for the nation. It was an emotional journey while writing because I got into the depth of it while viewing the journey of these real heroes. This series has created a value of life towards the nation.

Tell us about the inception of EORTV, what led you & the team to come up with it, challenges faced etc.
I
 wanted to be a voice of reason in this second phase of my life. I have always wanted to do something to bring about some significant changes in society, and whenever I met people from the LGBTQ community,  I felt sorry for them. I always thought, why are they not studying, why can’t they become pilots ,why are they not doing larger than life things ,why are they not happy? And mainly why are they not getting accepted in society? That’s how I thought I would tell the stories and aim to create an awareness in the society.  The people in our community are one of us and are with us. We have to accept them. Talking about challenges, challenges are huge. Being a director, being a storyteller I have pitched the stories to all GECC and OTT platforms and nobody accepted them. That’s what led me to start our own independent OTT platform EORTV. EORTV is the first LGBTQ focused platform in our country.

What do you think about the present Indian OTT space & how do you visualize the same in the near future?
I feel the present Indian OTT platform has a huge market where they can gain a big audience if they tell good stories for the future. Whoever will say good and engaging stories will sustain.  The current streaming business is experiencing the golden era, due to the pandemic, people have become more informed about various streaming platforms and are happy to use it. Due to this directly or indirectly people’s views are broadening and they are accepting unusual content, even out of their comfort zone and have started liking and supporting the same. Social media is a big influence in this, as word of mouth through social media is playing a crucial part.

Could you share some of the future plans of EORTV?
EORTV will create a couple of franchises in the country. So we will meet with new talent and technicians. We want to expand our brain, get more hands and legs and minds to work together.  Through this journey we are going to motivate the youth and provide a platform to them.

I want to play roles which are challenging: In Conversation with Model and Actress Roaleey Ryan

Hailing from Delhi, model turned actor Roaleey Ryan has worked in Bollywood Films like Faactory, Blood D, Be – Careful. Most recently she’s been seen in the lead role in She is now being seen playing the lead role in EORTVs web show called I love Us 2, a lesbian drama which deals with same sex relationships. Here’s an excerpt from a conversation with her-

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I am obsessed with the idea of creation: Says Actress Shalini Pandey

Shalini Pandey who has been active in both Gujarati and Hindi cinema, has been recently receiving a lot of attention for her appearance in the music video, Sajna by Vikram Montrose. Here’s an excerpt from a recent conversation with the talented actress.

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Prakash Jha provides the right atmosphere for actors to deliver truthful performances’: Actor Rajeev Siddhartha

The third season of Aashram has hit the web and is receiving amazing response from the audiences and critics alike. Actor Rajeev Siddhartha who plays a prominent role through all 3 seasons as ‘Akki’ is flooded with messages on social media and feedback from peers and colleagues on his performance and the show’s success.

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Actor Shalini Pandey features in Vikram Montrose’s music video ‘Sajna’

Actor Shalini Pandey is seen in up-and-coming music composer Vikram Montrose’s (Sanju and Shershaah) recently released music video, titled ‘Sajna’. Shalini had garnered a lot of positive reviews for her Gujarati film Rachna No Dabbo and short film, Dwand as their leading lady and is now gearing up for a Hindi feature film, alongside the release of Sajna.

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Souvik Gupta’s web-series Yeh Dooriyan starring Manjari Fadnnis and Paresh Pahuja releases digitally

Writer-director Souvik Gupta whose last outing was creative direction for the anthology series “Fuh se Fantasy” released by VOOT is now out with his next web series called “Yeh Dooriyaan” starring actors Paresh Pahuja (Tiger Zinda Hai fame) and Manjari Fadnnis (Jaane Tu..Ya Jaane Na fame) on the popular YouTube channel Humaramovie. Yeh Dooriyan which was entirely shot during 2020 lockdown is a love story about a long-distance marriage. Even though it was shot during the lockdown, it is not a story about lockdown or the pandemic, it’s just a catalyst and finds very little mention in the series.

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Producer Mansi Bagla makes a splash, shoots for a music video at the Cannes Film Festival with Raveena Mehta

Talk about making noise in tinsel town! Mansi Bagla is no new name in the industry now. From announcing her first film as a Producer for Forensic to walking at the Red Carpet at Cannes Film Festival 2022, Mansi has surely come a long way. As she was leaving for the Cannes Film Festival, where she was invited to talk about her collaboration with Ruskin Bond and his stories, she confirmed signing director Mohit Suri for the same project. She released her first promotional song ‘Tujhse Milne Ki Aas’ from Cannes starring renowned artist and singer Raveena Mehta, created in gratitude to Mohit Suri, for coming on board for this project. The teaser was launched at Monte Carlo for the Red Carpet Fashion Week at the prestigious hermitage hotel.

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The Harry Potter Series inspired me to become an actor: In Conversation with Model & Actor Medha Rana

Model turned actor Medha Rana has been noticed of late for her presence in the music video, Armaan Malik: Barsaat and the web-series London Files (streaming on Voot). We at MAM caught up with Medha for a brief conversation about her career so far, given below is an excerpt from the same-

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The Script Room completes 3 years with over a 100 ad films, coming soon-the first Script Room Original Series

The Script Room, the young bespoke advertising outfit which is modelled as writers’ room completes three glorious years hitting it out of the park with more than a hundred ad films. A pioneer in creating and producing engaging content, The Script Room has worked as a creative agency with a diverse portfolio of clients. Founded by Rajesh Ramaswamy (Ramsam) & Ayyappan Raj in 2019, the agency has been offering content strategies, script writing & production support to clients.

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