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Real-life stories take center stage in OTT narratives

True story-based shows on OTT platforms have emerged as the latest trend, captivating audiences with gripping narratives rooted in reality. From the intense revelations of Aakhri Sach to the adrenaline-fueled accounts in The Railway Men, the investigative prowess of Scoop, these shows delve into the complexities of real-life events. With shows like Mumbai Diaries 26/11 and Scam 2003 Telgi Story, the genre is gaining momentum, providing a compelling blend of drama and authenticity. Makers and actors share insights on real lives turning into real stories on OTT. Harman Baweja (Actor, Scoop) says, “There is something far more engaging and thrilling for the audience when you know that something has been inspired by a true story or event, because truth is usually stranger than fiction. If one can capture the true incident in a dramatic fashion, it raises the excitement levels a lot more. A lot of films are also being made on true stories these days. I always feel that a true story has marginal edge, but has a fare share of restrictions. it has its pros and cons.”

Gagan Dev Riar (Actor, Scam 2003, The Telgi Story) agrees and adds that its the natural attraction towards real life stories thats growing. “I think the educated audience today is naturally drawn towards real life stories as for a long period they have been served fictional stories that have reached their saturation point. OTT gives us a choice as to what to take from these real life stories. Every trend is part of a cycle. One thing goes another takes space,” he quips, to which Tushar Hiranandani (Director, Scam 2003) adds, “I have only made true stories thus far, be it OTT or theatre and I am definitely drawn to them. Going by the success of these stories recently, the audience seems drawn to them as well. There is a protocol called SNP (standard and practices) which is dedicated to foretell sensitive points and manage them the best possible way, so we try not to offend anyone in the process. There will always be a market and demand for true stories. True crime is thrilling for people as you are experiencing controlled danger.”

While Abhishek Banerjee (Actor, Aakhri Sach) believes that it is generally a trend, be it an OTT or a theatrical release. I don’t know if its an OTT trend or usually the makers get attracted to an incident which has already happened because it gives you material. But, OTT definitely gives us a chance to tell the story as it is and not make too many changes- according to a particular mass, like in theatres. OTT helps in re-imagining the stories through our own creativity, which is why the audience enjoys these stories,” the actor says.

Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub (Actor, Scoop) on the other hand says that there was less content of this type earlier. “The audience was always interested in watching real life stories content, but we were not making them enough, there are many commercial liabilities coming into play. But with OTT, you have to freedon because you don’t have to worry about people coming to the theatres or numbers. It is always intriguing for the audience to watch something happening in the world around us. It is a major reason as to why so many people are making so many real story based shows on OTT these days.”

Shivin Narang (Actor, Aakhri Sach), concludes, “People are always intrigued and attracted by true story based shows. OTT platforms convert the news headlines to shows, and they give all the details about the incident, in a little glamourised way, that’s the beauty of it.” Hindustan Times

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