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Ekam showrunner Sandeep PS says some stories are so hard-hitting that the show may not be a...

Journeyman Productions’ Sandeep adds that Ekam, which releases on July 13, is a bunch of disconnected films connected by a theme

Ekam showrunner Sandeep PS says some stories are so hard-hitting that the show may not be a...
Sandeep PS; the showrunner of Ekam and (right) Raj B Shetty in an episode from the show

Last Updated: 09.50 AM, Jul 10, 2024

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On July 13, actor-filmmaker Rakshit Shetty’s first-ever web series from his banner Paramvah Studios, will be available to audiences. Produced by Sandeep PS’ Journeyman Productions and presented by Paramvah, the 7-episode show, BTS moments from the making and some more unique content will be made available for a sum of Rs 149 if they are from India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan. For viewers in any other country, it will cost them a one-time fee of $4. Speaking to OTTplay about the show, Sandeep had elaborated why he and his team had to find a way to release the show on their own platform, which, he admits, may not be a perfect model, but is a great distribution model.

“It’s taken us nearly four months to create the platform, which, we believe should hold its ground. We had a soft launch and tested it out with 60-70 people, based on which we made some corrections. This, of course, is not a load test in any form, but that’s not something we can do unless the site and the contents actually go live. We’ve tied up with a firm that deals with large enterprises, so our servers can hold up to 20 million users at the same time,” says Sandeep, adding that building the platform came from a point of solving a problem (releasing Ekam) and that he and his team have not given a thought about offering it for other Kannada content to be hosted.

Prakash Raj, Prakash Thuminad, Shine Shetty and Raj B Shetty are among the cast members of Ekam, the web series produced by Rakshit Shetty
Prakash Raj, Prakash Thuminad, Shine Shetty and Raj B Shetty are among the cast members of Ekam, the web series produced by Rakshit Shetty

All about Ekam

As for the show, Swaroop Elamon and Sanal Aman directed two episodes – Identity and Tradition; Shankar and Vivek Vinod directed Flight, while Sumanth Bhat handled the remaining four. The episodes average around 35 minutes in run-time, which could not be bundled together as an anthology film because the content was curated to be a series, Sandeep explains. “Also, some of these stories are quite hard-hitting; you may not want to watch anything else after a particular episode. It’s not really a continuous experience. Ekam is a bunch of disconnected films connected by a theme. It’s almost like Black Mirror in that sense, but not by the darkness, but that the theme of the stories is Karavalli.”

Given that audiences tend to prefer bingeable content, why did Sandeep and team then go ahead with this set of 7 stories? “Sumanth Bhat, who has co-created the show with me, had reached out to me some years ago to make a short film. Once we finished that, the plan was to send it to festivals, but then we had several discussions wondering if this is the ultimate possibility of a short film. Yes, it will do the festival circuit, but the people we’d made it for were not essentially the festival crowd. That wasn’t the intent and we wondered if there was any other way to get it to the audience. That’s where the idea the idea of making a series came about – ‘What if we were able to make a few more shorts and curate it in a way that it can work?’,” Sandeep says about the origin of Ekam.

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The team spent a month putting together the stories, which were then greenlit by Rakshit almost immediately. “Three of the stories are by my Physics teacher from school, who is an undiscovered talent from Bengaluru. There’s one by Shashikanth, while the rest are stories that Sumanth either wrote or found in Udupi,” he says, adding that the initial plan was to have 8 films. “The 8th story was the one that I was to direct, but that got dropped because of the second phase of the pandemic. We were shooting for the show when lockdown relaxations came, but during the second phase, the pandemic was quite bad and one of our actors passed away. Then it got very real that the risk is not worth it.”

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