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Exclusive! Bhoot Police producer Ramesh Taurani: OTT has given opportunities to many actors who didn't get work earlier

The ace producer also clarified that films are either good or bad, nothing else.

Aishwarya Vasudevan
Sep 10, 2021
cover image
Ramesh Taurani/Instagram

After three years, Tips Films' head honcho Ramesh Taurani is returning as a producer with horror-comedy Bhoot Police. This marks veteran producer's entry into the OTT space and the film is all set to stream on Disney+ Hotstar from Friday. In his career as a producer for nearly three decades, Taurani has backed films in every possible genre. He has produced many commercial movies but in an exclusive interaction with OTTPlay, he said he doesn't go by such definitions that are given by filmmakers and media, films are either good or bad and nothing else.

Moreover, the ace producer also spoke at length about preponing the streaming of Bhoot Police and also skipping theatrical releases due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Talking about the same, Taurani stated, "We got a very good buzz around the film. Hotstar is excited to release the film earlier and it's a holiday weekend, that's why we preponed the release."

But it was a tough decision to skip the theatrical release. He said, "Theatres are not fully operational even now. We didn't know how the situation is going to be further. That's why we opted to release it on Disney+ Hotstar and we are happy about it. We are releasing the film around the same time it was announced to hit on the big screens. Irrespective of any medium, if it's a good film, people will love it."

While praising the script of Bhoot Police, Taurani revealed what drew him towards the film. He said, "We liked the script and felt that this film should be made. The story is also good and the timing was also right, so we were sure about the film."

Bhoot Police was initially announced with Ali Fazal and Fatima Sana Shaikh along with Saif Ali Khan when Fox Star Hindi was producing it. Of course, now there’s Arjun Kapoor with Yami Gautam and Jacqueline Fernandez. This change of cast was announced last year. The Race 3 producer said, "When the initial cast was announced, the film was with someone else. But when we got the script, we did what we felt was right. We felt this would be a better cast, that's why we went ahead with this."

The script of the film also underwent several changes. Ask if it was altered after he took over and he said: "The story keeps on updating now and then. When we got the film, at that time, only Saif Ali Khan was attached as the cast of the film."

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Saif Ali Khan, Ali Fazal, Fatima Sana Shaikh - Bhoot Police

He further praised the script by adding that he is confident that people will definitely love the film. "They will be scared, while at the same time, they will enjoy and laugh aloud too. The film has an amazing star cast, dialogues, so we are sure people will love the film."

When asked how the entertainment industry has evolved in the post-COVID-19 era, the ace producer said, "Theatres will always work and should work. The experience of watching movies at the theatres is always preferred by the people. There will never be a change in that. People are waiting for theatres to open fully and no matter what, they will enjoy watching movies on the big screen."

Over the years, the definition of commercial cinemas too has changed. But Taurani clarified that movies are either good or bad. He went on to say, "Commercial cinema and art films are the names given by us and the media; films are either good or bad. Now, due to multiplexes and OTT platforms, the films for which as they called had 'niche' audiences have changed over the years."

He added, "Films with hard-hitting subjects and different stories work nowadays. Bareilly Ki Barfi, Badhaai Ho, Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan; these movies also work nowadays. At the same time, when Sooryavanshi releases, it will get an amazing opening at the box office, so will Golmaal movies."

Taurani recalled producing a 'female-centric' film about two decades back and the trend is not new. He said, "In 2000, I had produced Kya Kehna when there were no multiplexes. But the film was a huge hit and is considered to be among the 'women-centric' films. People feel that female-oriented films work nowadays more, it's nothing like that. Movies are either good or bad!"

Before Bhoot Police, the veteran producer's last release as a producer was Race 3 starring Salman Khan in the lead role. Although the film was a box office blockbuster, it was bashed by the critics and people too. Talking about how he balances out the success of the film, Tips Official's head honcho said, "The main thing is that the public should like the film. We get to know from the box office collections if people have liked the film or not. There are films which are good and the box office collections are also amazing, it's sone pe suhaga for us. Films such as 3 Idiots, PK and Munna Bhai series - these films have worked commercially and the stories are also great."

On the concept of the 'content is king', the producer had an interesting take by stating, "The content was, is and always be the King, there's no denial in that. One good thing about OTT is that it has given me options on whether or not to opt for a theatrical release. If it's not getting a release on the big screen, I can rely on OTT platforms for my film to come out and also work well. OTT has opened up a lot of avenues. Earlier we used to think about how a specific story will be made on screen, but now it's easily created and liked by the masses. Moreover, OTT has allowed many actors who didn't get work earlier to have a second inning and many new actors are also getting to kick start their careers."

However, he felt censorship of OTTs is not practically possible. "If a web series is being made, nobody has time to watch 10 episodes. Nowadays, many are opting for self-censorship just like on TV," he said and signed off.

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