Posted: Posted Date – 4:29 PM, Sat – Mar 5, 22
Hyderabad: After long reigning on the big screen, Madhuri Dixit Nene recently made her digital debut with the web series ‘The Fame Game’. The series, a family thriller, sees the actor try out the role of a superstar, Anamika Anand, who suddenly disappears one day. As the tale progresses, many of the family’s dark secrets are uncovered along its journey, creating imagery that draws its strength from shades of gray.
In a recent chat, Madhuri and the series’ creator-showrunner, Sri Rao, talked about the actor’s digital debut, what happened behind the creation of the series, the main character and the universe. from “The Fame Game”.
The main character is a broken soul and a lot of that comes from the people she loves or who are close to her. Revealing his process of extracting pain from the emotion of love, Madhuri says, “We see so many ups and downs in our lives, we see our loved ones leaving us. I think extracting the pain from it is easy. Many artists and poets have turned their pain into art. As we often feel, it is not so difficult to represent it on the screen.
Madhuri has reunited with her 90s co-actor Sanjay Kapoor for the show after a hiatus of more than 20 years. Sharing her feelings about working with the actor again, she says, “I worked with Sanjay a long time ago in ‘Raja’ and ‘Mohabbat’. At that time, I was a star and he was just a newcomer who made 2 or 3 films. When we got together and started shooting for “The Fame Game”, I realized what a great actor he had become. We have a lot of scenes together that are very emotional and very layered and it was important to have that level of comfort. Also, we used to talk between shots and reminisce about past things where we vibed very well together,” she adds.
Commenting on what excites him about the OTT world, the actor says, “When you make a movie you only have two and a half hours to show your story, but with a series you have more than eight hours to create the entire world because it’s not just the central character, but everyone around the central character has their backstory.
“You start to feel like you know everyone. I watched ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ as they drag you into their lives. Additionally, content on OTT is released simultaneously for the world with both dubbed and subtitled versions. It’s something that makes the OTT medium both interesting and exciting,” Madhuri shares.
The series alternates between cool and warm color shades with respect to past and present events. Explaining his approach to designing the look and feel of the series, Sri Rao says, “The story might be a bit difficult to follow, but we wanted it to be very easy to understand and follow for folks, and we’ve done it successfully using different color tones for different timelines. The past timeline is very warm in color and very comforting – it embodies who she is as a character and the current timeline where she’s not there encompasses a very cold feeling.
He further defines the demarcation between the two timelines: “It’s a subtle difference that some people might not even grasp, but it’s something that will subconsciously register in their minds. We worked on that with the help of our brilliant cinematographer Manoj and an equally brilliant production design team, as well as costume design.
Ask him if he was somehow inspired by Christopher Nolan’s neo-noir mystery thriller “Memento” and he’ll say, “I love ‘Memento’ as a movie and saw it in theaters on day of its release, but we weren’t directly influenced by this movie or any other movie. It was more about the story because we wanted to guide viewers to where the story leads.