‘Saw the lure of in­ter­net long be­fore most peo­ple did’

Hindustan Times (Chandigarh) - City - - ENTERTAINMENT -

Ac­tor R Mad­ha­van is back, this time in a web se­ries. The star, whose last Hindi film was the box­ing drama, Saala Khadoos (2016), and the lat­est Tamil film is Vikram Vedha (2017), says that the dig­i­tal medium is worth­while.

Mad­ha­van, who com­pletes 22 years in cinema in 2018, be­lieves that web se­ries con­tent works be­cause of its re­lat­able qual­i­ties.

Asked why he is do­ing this par­tic­u­lar web se­ries, he replies, “Be­cause this is where I saw some­thing worth in­vest­ing my time, en­ergy and ef­forts in, apart from movies.”

He con­tin­ues, “See, the magic of the large screen won’t go away. But at the same time, the lure of the In­ter­net is some­thing I saw com­ing long be­fore most peo­ple in the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try.”

So, like many others in the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try, does Mad­ha­van, too, think that con­tent is king?

“Not just any con­tent, but pow­er­ful, fresh con­tent. And a web se­ries can­not be treated on a par with the big-screen ex­pe­ri­ence,” he says.

The ac­tor re­counts how he has watched San­jay Leela Bhansali’s Pad­maa­vat and has felt that the big-screen epic drama “trans­ported us into a dif­fer­ent world”. He says, “We stared at their larger-than-life world, heads raised, look­ing up at the screen. When we see a web se­ries, our heads are at level with the screen. We are one of them on the screen. It’s the re­lat­able qual­ity that makes a web se­ries work. Just as Pad­maa­vat can’t work on the small screen, [my web se­ries] would have fallen flat on the large screen.”

Mad­ha­van is amused at the sug­ges­tion that view­ers might now start doubt­ing his ca­reer in cinema. He points out, “In the West, the big­gest stars do web se­ries. Os­car win­ner Meryl Streep is do­ing the sec­ond sea­son of Big Lit­tle Lies. I saw the po­tency of the dig­i­tal plat­form long ago.”

The web, he says, is not the fu­ture; rather, “I see it as the present.”

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