Veteran TV actor and Producer Dheeraj Kumar is quite optimistic about the success of the new ZEE5web series, Ishq Aaj Kal.
“This romantic thriller with a hotel industry backdrop is a one-of-its-kind web spinoff of the ongoing popular Zee TV show, Ishq Subhanallah,” he says.
Talking about making a leap from one medium to the other, he says, “This is based on hard analytics and not any whim. The two audiences do overlap.”
“The lead actors of the latter (Adnan Khan and Eisha Singh) will play an important role in the former as well. Zara (Eisha) is the bhabhi of lead character, Aaliya (Ankita Sharma), who is the love interest of Faraz Shieikh (Paras Kalnawat). Angad Hasija, Shagun Sharma and Roshmi Banik complete the principal casting.”
“We are confident that Ishq Subhanallah viewers will tune into ZEE5. Also, there are many who like Ishq Subhanallah but are not able to confirm to its appointment-viewing format. They will surely check out Ishq Aaj Kal,” Dheeraj Kumar adds.
“This overlap ensures that we not only take the brand value of Ishq Subhanallah forward, but also add our fresh ideas to it, thus making it a sure-shot winner,” quips Dheeraj, whose banner, Creative Eye is a brand name in mytho shows such as Om Namah Shivay, Jap Tap Vratt and Ganesh Leela.
Talking about the format, he says, “It will follow the non-linear format to make the viewer binge all eight episodes (streaming from 4th July) in one go. The shooting style and writing are very much in conjunction with what the youth wants.”
“We have shot the first season in Manali. Web series prefer actual locales as opposed to proper sets on TV,” adds Dheeraj.
Will a Muslim social work (Ishq Subhanallah) on the web? “We will not have hard core Urdu; rather, our characters will speak about every day issues in common parlance.” His other social shows have included Ghar Ki Lakshmi Betiyann, Maayka and Tujh Sang Preet Lagai Sajna.
Also, most web series are very bold. So will Ishq Aaj Kal also have nudity? “While we might show kissing which is a very normal human emotion when couples come close, where we draw the line is at intimacy and lovemaking scenes, which I regard as vulgar.”
Here Dheeraj informs, “We have already started shooting season 2 in Mumbai. There might be a gap of 15-20 days before it goes live, allowing us some time to make minor changes as per social media feedback.”
“Depending on the responses to the first 2 seasons, we will think of its possible third avatar,” he ends.
Best of luck to Creative Eye for this one!!