Content creators should focus on viewership in the beginning: 'Gippi' director Sonam Nair

She is all set to direct a Netflix show called 'Masaba Masaba' next.


MUMBAI: Sonam Nair, the director of Kaafir, Gippi, Khujli and The Trip - Season 2, never had any plans to enter B-town but has been praised by audiences and critics alike. At The Content Hub 2020, an initiative by indiantelevision.com, Nair at spoke at length about directing digital and television series.

Nair poured her heart out while addressing social stigmas and how she was bullied and body shamed as a kid.  However, things were never easy for her; she had to wait for almost three years to make a sex comedy film. Finally, a short film named based on the same ethos of sex comedy Khujli starring Neena Gupta and Jackie Shroff resurrected Nair’s career.

Khulji’s success inspired Nair to work for digital platforms.

Sonam echoes, “I don’t think having lots of special effects and an ensemble star cast works. I think simple, relatable stories that have humour attached to it do. This whole digital platform opened up for me and I could tell stories I wanted to tell. After Khujli I directed the second season of the show called The Trip, I directed Kaafir and now I am working on a story written and directed for Netflix called Masaba Masaba. The show is based on the bond between a real-life mother-daughter duo of ace fashion designer Masaba Gupta and Bollywood actor Neena Gupta."

Her interest in movies increased only after working in Ayan Mukerji’s Wake Up Sid. Post that she worked as an assistant director in Vishal Bhardwaj’s 7 Khoon Maaf. After working in two critically acclaimed movies Nair went on to direct a film based on her own life titled Gippi.

While addressing the issues prevailing in the content industry Nair said, “It is difficult to sell stories to a particular platform because this not how OTT platforms work. It is an anthology of supposedly six short films that works. Otherwise platforms are quite scared to take just one story. Initially one should focus on viewership and not selling the story to the OTT platforms. With this move you create confidence in audiences and also at the same time prove your work.”

Expressing her view on the term showrunner Nair said that the term is now a days completely misused. Sometimes a head writer becomes a showrunner, or sometimes a producer is a showrunner. "In my previous show, Kaafir, Siddharth Malhotra was a producer and a showrunner. His gets the credit for bringing in the cast together. He was responsible for the scripts. That makes him a showrunner. I am still figuring out this term. Getting credit for the work which you have not done still scares me.”

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