Candid chat with Producer Rajan Shahi

At a time when most new launches have been quite lackluster, producer Rajan Shahi’s Yeh Rishtey Hain Pyaar Ke on Star Plus has done comparatively much better.

“Although I don’t have technical details, number have come down across the board due to the subscription system still being fine-tuned. In some areas, certain channels are not yet available and subscribers have also not chosen their favourite. So it will take a little bit of more time for things to get back to normal.”

“In this above scenario, I can say I am satisfied with the initial run of Yeh Rishtey Hain Pyaar Ke. Having confidence in our product, we took the risk of first establishing our respective characters, rather than going for high drama first up. Ideally, any show should be given some time to find its feet, but today broadcasters want ratings from day 1, hence storyboards move from high point to high point.”

Talking about lead actor Shaheer Sheikh, he says, “He was the ideal fit, given that he is not only what our character demanded, but is very popular as well. He was in Indonesia when the casting process happened over the phone. It did not take more than three or four calls to seal the deal. Soon he came back home and signed the contract.”

Ask whether Shaheer’s recent track record (Dastaan-E-Mohabbat Salim Anarkali sank without a trace) did not act as a deterrent, to which he replies, “Our casting is never based on an actor’s last TRP. Like I said, he or she should fit my bill, period. Also, it would be wrong to either credit or blame any actor on a show’s success or otherwise, which is always the result of teamwork.”

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