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Mukul Abhyankar on Convincing Mithun Chakraborty, Shruti Haasan for Bestseller: Script Did the Job

Among the numerous genres of shows OTT platforms offer us, thrillers have become the favourite of filmmakers and the

number of shows and movies lined up in this genre is a witness to that. The latest thriller series to hit the digital platform is Mukul Abhyankar’s Bestseller, which also marks the OTT debut of veteran actor Mithun Chakraborty, Shruti Haasan, and Marathi actress Sonalee Kulkarni. In an exclusive conversation with, director Mukul Abhyankar and producer Siddharth Malhotra talked about their series, the actors and how this thriller is going to be different from the others.

Talking about his show, Malhotra said, “Thriller, as a genre, keeps you compelled. That’s why people do a thriller but for us, the reason to make the show was not the genre. In fact, our promo promises you an ‘edge of the seat’ thriller with action, but it is also a psychological and emotional thriller.”

The director added, “We have invested a lot in the human aspect of the story. And so the thrill is a byproduct of it. This is also a ‘relationship thriller’, if I’m coining a new word. When you call it a thriller, people tend to put it in one particular category because they want to know what the thing is about. If you are looking at it only as a whodunnit, it is more than that. It is, who done it, why done it, when done it, where done it and so many things. We have tried to make the characters very endearing and that has happened through the thrill.”

Talking about why thriller as a genre has gained so much popularity, the producer explained, “In the OTT world, you’ve got to tell the viewer to come to the next episode and the genre automatically compels you to watch the next scene, if it’s good writing. Actually, the genre has also failed if not done well every time because the writing has to be extremely good and then the actors, the direction and all of that has to come together.”

The series will also see veteran actor Mithun Chakraborty making his debut in the digital space along with Shruti Haasan. However, it was not difficult to convince them. Mukul shared, “The groundwork was already done by Siddharth. He was already in talks with Mithun dada and I happen to have known him for over 15 years. But both of us wouldn’t have influenced him so much as the scripts did. Because when we went to meet him, he had already read the scripts and was already the character who was standing in front of us. There were zero efforts from my side to convince dada to be part of it. The character from the scripts had already won him over.”

Talking about Shruti, Siddharth shared an interesting anecdote, “I have always been fond of her as an actor.

We approached her and the script did the job. And what I actually loved, this is one thing we have never brought up in any other interview, is that the first thing she asked me was not who her co-stars are but who the technicians are. It’s such a delight when an actor asks who is the DoP or who is doing the camera, who is doing the music. She never once asked me anything about her co-stars and you will never hear this from any actor. They never ask who are the technicians!”

Bestseller also stars Arjan Bajwa, Gauahar Khan, Satyajeet Dubey and Sonalee Kulkarni in prominent roles and it is currently streaming on Prime Video.

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