Content is king: How Raj & DK cracked the formula to OTT success – Leisure News

If there was at the moment a contest for which OTT filmmakers have been the most prolific and sought-after, Raj Nidimoru & Krishna D.Ok. (Raj & DK) are certain to win convincingly. The duo’s upcoming slate, underneath their D2R Films banner, speaks for itself. First, there’s the extremely-anticipated second season of The Family Man (2019-), which is able to stream on Amazon Prime Video from June 4. This will then be adopted by one other Amazon Prime sequence which marks the OTT debut of Shahid Kapoor, and in addition stars Vijay Sethupathi. Raj & DK have additionally produced and helped write Gulkanda, an internet sequence being directed by Rahi Anil Barve of Tumbbad (2018) fame. And then there’s the largest one of all of them—the Indian instalment of Russo brothers’ epic Amazon present, Citadel. In between their busy schedule, Raj & DK have one way or the other even discovered the time to begin D2R Indie, a boutique studio which seeks to assist filmmakers with ingenious concepts however restricted monetary sources. Its first title, Telugu movie Cinema Bandi, just lately launched on Netflix. They even have three movie scripts prepared to roll. The query asks itself: do the software program engineers-turned-self-taught filmmakers ever take a break?

“We are writing all the time,” says DK, the quieter of the two filmmakers. “In fact, if in any week, it doesn’t look like there are two or three scripts in progress, I wonder where we are going wrong.” The understanding they share and their common circulation of concepts could be attributed to the incontrovertible fact that the two have been working collectively for twenty years now, going again to the US the place they made their first two English options—Shaadi.com (2002) and Flavours (2003). Speaking of what it takes to maintain a working partnership, Raj says, “You need a tremendous amount of patience and a pretence of respect for each other [laughs]. Otherwise, it won’t last.” While Raj loves to make a listing of all their tales and is identified to change the order, it falls on DK to preserve tabs as they shuttle between tasks. “There comes a point where people hate writing, but for us, it is fun. We have made a habit of it,” provides Raj.

A nonetheless from Telugu movie Cinema Bandi, D2R Indie’s first title

Raj & DK are additionally seeing their creativity surge as a result of they’re now collaborating with extra writers—Mitesh Shah (Gulkanda), Suman Kumar (The Family Man), Hussain Dalal (untitled Amazon-Shahid Kapoor sequence) and Sita R. Menon, who has labored with them on all their directorial ventures—from their Hindi debut 99 (2009) to their characteristic A Gentleman (2017) and now Citadel. Currently, the largest benefactor of Raj & DK’s output is Amazon Prime Video, which has, in flip, contributed to their success. “They put a lot of faith in us and gave us full creative freedom,” they are saying. “Whenever we had an idea for another series, they [Amazon] just became the go-to people.”

Given the present D2R movies roster, nonetheless, it appears options aren’t a precedence for the author-director crew whose preliminary fame had resulted from the gritty Shor in the City (2010) and the zombie comedy Go Goa Gone (2013). For their half, Raj & DK disagree. The pandemic, they are saying, led to a change in plans. “The [theatrical] film format took a beating last year,” says DK. “Any film plans we had we have put on a backburner until things get better.”

The present goes on, no matter format. With their stockpile of prepared scripts, Raj & DK are actually keen to let others direct their creations. “We don’t want to be sitting on our scripts,” they are saying. “It also gives us the opportunity to make more films than what we do, which is one film in two years.” This endeavour to share began with Stree (2018), which noticed their former assistant Amar Kaushik make his directorial debut. The horror comedy would go on to be their most profitable movie, incomes over Rs 120 crore.

It was with Family Man, although, that Raj & DK earned the vital acclaim, viewers adulation and studio success that almost all filmmakers can solely dream of. Congratulatory calls poured in, a few of them from actors expressing a want to do a sequence. One of these was Shahid Kapoor. This is why Raj goes on to assert that there isn’t a single actor “out there who doesn’t want to do a series”. “Every actor relishes the fact that a series affords you an extended period of time to pin down your character and see a 360 [degree view] of it,” provides DK. “As writers, we love that too.”

In the midst of what could be seen as their most profitable cinematic spell, Raj & DK are eager not to lose the impartial spirit. It has, in any case, introduced them this far. As techies who give up their profitable jobs in the US and poured their financial savings into relocating to Mumbai to make movies, they’re acquainted with the wrestle, and D2R Indie is their means of constructing the journey for passionate outsiders like them much less fraught. What a conventional studio might shrink back from, D2R Indie might be sport for. “With an indie, you are down to your wits and a story which doesn’t have a commercial mould to it,” says Raj. “You are enthused to have a fresh take on a genre.” And it’s that enthusiasm which pushes them each day. Only now they don’t have to borrow cash from pals. For now, the world’s richest man, Jeff Bezos, [Amazon CEO], has their again.

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