Her banner, Nandhi Entertainments, will produce two OTT shows in the coming months
Actress Nandini Rai, who wowed audiences with her intense performance in aha's In the Name of God and was seen in ZEE5's critically acclaimed cop drama Shootout at Alair, will be turning a new leaf soon. The four-time pageant winner and former Bigg Boss contestant is all set to turn a producer with a couple of Telugu web shows for two major OTT platforms. The directors of both the shows have been finalised, but interestingly, Nandini won't act in any of them. Her production banner has been named Nandhi Entertainments.
The first of the projects will be for Netflix, a big-budgeted show tentatively titled Daasi, to be helmed by Palasa 1978, Metro Kathalu director Karuna Kumar. "We're still hunting for the lead actress. I am keen on casting a Telugu girl from Hyderabad for it. There are 12 new faces that we need for the show and I'll make sure Telugu-speaking girls get them. I am always asked why don't Telugu girls make it big in the entertainment industry and I want to put my best foot forward to create opportunities for them. We plan to utilise local talent who may not have got their due in feature films and give them a platform to showcase their worth. Netflix is quite happy with the idea," Nandini says, exclusively to OTTplay. The show will commence shoot in August.
Another untitled show will be directed by Baddam Rajasekhar Reddy, a first time director who had associated with Nandini Rai for a couple of short films Why and Why 2. "When he narrated me an idea, I took an instant liking to it and approached ZEE5 if they would take it up. In a matter of time, the proposal was okayed and my production house took off," she adds. When asked why she wouldn't be interested to act in the projects should produce, Nandini justifies it, "I have staff and family who'll manage the production activity. I don't want to force someone to cast me just because I'm producing a project. It's an uncomfortable situation for both of us. I also don't want someone to offer me an acting offer with an expectation that I would produce it."
What prompted her to turn a producer in the first place? "It's my passion for storytelling and filmmaking that's making me do it. The pandemic is eating away so many lives; life suddenly feels so temporary and you never know when you may lose your beloved. Production was a long-term goal for me and I didn't want to delay it any further. I want to inspire many women to not give up on their careers. I have seen so many actors drowing into depression because of no work and I want this venture, projects to give them hope and strength."